Bashful Creature

Bashful Creature at the Hotel Cafe Hollywood

Our Philosophy

Within each one of us exists a Bashful Creature. Hidden beneath layers of constructed personalities and externally influenced self-images, it is the most intimate expression of our souls. We each have the power to access this essence through deepest reflection and honesty. Some of us are more bashful; some are more like wild creatures. Songwriters Nailah Middleton and Alex Hamberger draw from both sides of the Bashful Creature to weave emotions, experiences, and adventures into colorful tunes.

Nailah Middleton of Bashful Creature


Nailah’s earliest musical engagement took place in the church. 

An ambitious child, she took to drum set, guitar, and piano, all while singing regularly with the choir at Turnaround Christian Center. In the secular world, she often found herself lost in African American folktales and literary fantasies. She imagined herself immersed in the mermaid kingdom described by Virginia Hamilton and wandering the forest of C.S. Lewis’ Narnia. 

Nailah discovered the music of Eric Satie and film scores of Joe Hisaishi. 

She realized that she could best interpret and communicate whimsical images and narratives through music. She embarked on a mission to create her own musical world in 2011 at the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts).   

Alex Hamberger of Bashful Creature


Alex grew up outside of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and was bathed in live music from an early age. Every year, his parents took him to the Milwaukee lakefront to experience Summerfest (“The World’s Largest Music Festival”), and he had easy access to the Alpine Valley Music Amphitheater. However, he always preferred seeing artists in smaller clubs. To him, nothing beat the feeling of being up close and personal while listening to their stories, save perhaps for sneaking backstage for a chance to chat with them. Alex zeroed in on the electric bass as his musical voice and headed up to Minneapolis for college. There, he studied jazz and ethnomusicology and became immersed in the local music scene. In 2014, he set his eyes on bigger sights and relocated to Los Angeles for graduate school.

Bashful Creature at the Hotel Cafe Hollywood

Where We Are Now

Bashful Creature intertwines introspective lyricism with colorful textures. Alex creates loops with his bass to provide percussive sounds and harmonies while Nailah leads the musical charge with floating melodies and splashes of harp. The material that comprises their forthcoming debut album tackles themes of unrequited love and understated commitment. With equal measures of jazz, synth pop, and folk-inspired melodies, Bashful Creature presents an unforgettable sound and live show.


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"Anime Tears" by Bashful Creature

Words by Nailah Middleton

Music by Nailah Middleton and Alex Hamberger

Video by Nailah Middleton and Ianna Vasale

"Twinkle Lights" by Bashful Creature

Words and music by Alex Hamberger

Performed live at The Hotel Cafe, Hollywood, CA