For many, Sylvia Tosun’s 2008 single “Underlying Feeling” evokes nostalgia for a long past. For Sylvia Tosun herself, it marks a focal point in her musical career. 13 years later, we take a look back at this track and the artist behind the song.
Released in 2008 with the record label Sea to Sun Recordings, “Underlying Feeling” is a progressive house track with Sylvia Tosun’s sultry vocals singing lyrics about the ineffable feeling of being in love. The song ended up landing in the top 20 on the Billboard Dance Radio Chart, at that point the second of Tosun’s songs to do so. That same year, Tosun also released a remix collection for the single. The most popular remixes for “Underlying Feeling” was the Adam K & Soha Radio Edit, which boasts over three million streams on Spotify.
Before releasing “Underlying Feeling,” Sylvia Tosun landed herself on the Billboard dance chart for the first time with the 2005 track “Sanctuary,” from her album Jump In, which succeeds her 2000 EP Too Close to the Sun. Between the two discs, in 2002, Tosun released “Anthem”––an album featuring ten different countries’ national anthems, sung in their native tongues––which landed her on the New York Times’ Top 21 List. In 2004, alongside Alicia Keys and Cyndi Lauper, Tosun was a featured performer at the Great Wall Concert in Beijing, China, the first-ever pop concert at China’s monumental landmark.
All of this, including “Underlying Feeling,” was the build-up to the breakthrough of her career: 2011 electronic dance music track “An Angel’s Love.” The third of Tosun’s songs to land on the Billboard Dance Chart, “An Angel’s Love,” is considered one of the defining vocal trance anthems of the decade and was featured on DJ Armin van Buuren’s “Universal Religion Chapter 5” compilation album.
When examining the artist’s upbringing, it is no surprise why Sylvia Tosun has had such a decorated and impressive career. Hailing from Connecticut, she began studying piano and dance when she was eight years old and was accepted into the prestigious Julliard School of Music at the age of 15. Post-graduation, her career ricocheted from a more classical path than the dance artist she ended up becoming: she began her career with the New York Grand Opera Company and then, a lead vocalist for the Trans-Siberian Orchestra. Her musical talents range from pop, rock, dance, operatic, and much more.
Her musical talent is also no stranger to the theater: a year before releasing “Underlying Feeling,” Tosun wrote and staged a musical theater piece, The Venus Concert, based on the mythology of the Roman goddess of love and beauty.
Tosun is also the recipient of the BMI Songwriters Hall of Fame Award for Excellence in Songwriting, to name one of the prestigious awards she has been merited for her skills as a vocalist and a songwriter. Take a flashback and listen to “Underlying Feeling” for a taste of Tosun’s writing and voice.