Violin / String Arrangement / Voice / Shamisen
Youka Snell completed a Bachelor of Music (Classical & Jazz Violin) and Master of Music Technology (Production/Composition) at Queensland Conservatorium of Music. She has since made a career of performing in live music ensembles around the world, spanning genres from hip hop to flamenco, swing jazz, rock, soul, RnB, folk and electronica/house. Youka currently lives in Berlin, where she is a regular on the live music scene and founding member/manager of world music group Mitsune.
Alongside her passion for live performance, Youka is also a prolific recording artist. Her appearances include television productions Bluey (Disney, BBC, ABC), The Family Law (ABC), Ronny Chieng International Student (SBS); film and documentary recordings Revelations (ABC), Donkey in Lahore (SBS); advertising campaigns and theatre recordings. In the realm of popular music, Youka has recorded several releases with her own bands and appeared as a guest on a multitude of pop/indie recordings as both a violinist and backing vocalist.
As a vocalist & VO artist, Youka has voiced audiobooks (Castalia House) and animated TV characters (The Strange Chores). She sings topline vocals for advertising, as well as live and recorded backing vocals.
Youka's love affair with the shamisen, a 3-stringed Japanese lute instrument, began in 2015 when her Grandma helped her purchase her first instrument in Osaka. Youka is currently a student of Hibiki Ichikawa, and a founding member of all-female shamisen trio Mitsune, who are based in Berlin and perform regularly across Europe. Youka engineered and produced Mitsune's debut album, and is interested in recording shamisen for mixed genres and visual productions.
Youka's specialty is multi-layered violin and string arrangements. She is passionate about creating dynamic arrangements to add texture and emotion to a recording, and is also a skilful soloist capable in many musical styles.
Examples of Youka's recorded work across all instruments are available in the audio player below.
If you'd like to chat to her about your project, feel free to send her a message using the contact form below.
Violin (Italian-built, 1999)
Shure Beta 87A
UAD Apollo x6
LR Baggs Para DI
Logic Pro X
Photos by Tania Bahr-Vollrath & Ali Mitton