Nana Adjoa’s music exudes a gentle and enchanting resplendence as intricate jazz instrumentation and atmospheric electronica melds with her glorious, silky vocals. Ahead of releasing her much-anticipated debut album next month, she shares five influential tracks with us.
The latest single taken from her debut Big Dreaming Ants, ‘I Want To Change’ sees the Dutch-Ghanaian artist offer her poignant poeticism with gently poised and rousing grandeur. The instrumental and melodic undulations of the track accentuate Adjoa’s gracefully empowering lyrical meditations. As the delicately plucked strings and hushed percussion make way for moments of soaring and full majestic arrangements Adjoa’s sublime, emotive vocals flow throughout with crystalline vibrancy.
‘I Want To Change’ “summarizes all of the thoughts that I was having when I was recording these songs” Adjoa explains. “I’m having these dreams about what my life could be, but I’m also seeing myself as a small part in this chain of people – all these small pieces working on something, and they don’t really understand how it’s connected or if it’s even connected. To me, it was like ants – all working together for a bigger goal.”
Get to know Nana Adjoa In Five…
WILCO – I AM TRYING TO BREAK YOUR HEART
I love love Jeff Tweedy’s lyrics. His wordplay and tone is very much a style on it’s own. To me it’s beautiful and playful mix of being poetic and direct. I love his natural way of singing, which keep the lyrics grounded in way. I love this album and this song particularly because of all these random sounding sounds and parts coming together as one beautiful thing.
LITTLE SIMZ – BOSS
The sound of this album is the coolest. I listened a lot to it during the writing my new album. My album doesn’t really sound alike though hahaha. But my first and foremost instrument is the bass. I love a simple drum groove looped with good bass line. The minimalistic but though production around the strong messages and raps of Little Simz are just stunning on this record.
LAURA MARLING – SOOTHING
Really dig this song and this whole album in general. Big fan of Blake Mills, who’s the producer of this record. His own records and all the ones he produces (like Alabama Shakes, Perfume Genius) sound very fresh, open, very organic and just super good! Laura Marlin’s clean and direct voice really stands out and touches me through all the mysterious stuff going on. Also, very cool video.
PORTISHEAD – THE RIP
Portishead is one of my favourite bands. They have this elusive but also grooving style and sample based sound that I just never grow tired of. This song always inspires me, as this perfect strange entity on it’s own. Their heavy sound mixed with the fragile voice of Beth Gibbons, exist I this space where I often like my own voice to be as well.
NINA SIMONE – EITHER WAY I LOSE
Nina Simone. Her piano playing style and her voice are just this great force that’s unique and unmatched. So much soul and passion. For my upcoming album but for all my upcoming music, I feel her music will never stop to inspire me and my way of approaching music. Great craftsmanship and raw passion. This track is one of my favourites lesser know ones.
‘Big Dreaming Ants’ is due out September 24th via Bloomer Records. Pre-order here.
Photo credit: Latoya van der Meeren