Interviews

Ayah: Emotions

While Canadian rappers Drake and Kardinal Offishall are attacking Hip Hop airwaves; Ayah provides R&B/Soul enthusiasts an intoxicating mixture of Funk, Soul and Hip Hop. Her music production combines Hip Hop Soul instrumentals with poetic lyrics of her experience as a young woman. As some artists chase making hit records similar to Billboard chart toppers, Ayah focuses on making unique songs that separate her voice from the pack.

Singersroom was able to catch up with the soulful northern neighbor to learn more about her musical style, mentor and the art of being a fool for music.

Singersroom: Why do you love R&B?

Ayah: I love all kinds of music, not just R&B everything from Hip Hop to Rock N’ Roll, even Country sometimes. If you heard the new record you see me dive into Country and I have a Rock band on the side. Really music is music. I think all music comes from soul music. Really good music evokes feeling and emotion and that is what I try to do. Being honest with myself and reach into my feelings and hopefully that comes out. If it’s coming through R&B right now then so be it.

Singersroom: Do you feel there is a particular sound that allows you to tell different stories or give out different emotions?

Ayah: I don’t know if it is different genres or different sounds within each genre because I can do a sad R&B song or a happy R&B song. I can do a Pop-ish upbeat R&B song and I can do a really slow old school make you cry type of song. I think it is the same in every genre, you can go hard on a Hip Hop beat but then you can calm down and do something more emotional. No matter what the genre is, I think there is a certain tempo and melody that give you a certain feeling rather then genres.

Singersroom: Are there certain producers that help to bring out particular emotions in you?

Ayah: Yes and no. If there producers that really put out one kind of sound then I can expect what is going to happen then yea. I think that a lot of the producers I work with feel the same way I feel so I try to be very versatile and multifaceted and just do different things.

Singersroom: You don’t feel like you have a sound?

Ayah: I definitely have a sound but like my sound will always be me because I feel like sometimes I make Rock music and sometimes I make Soul music and I love it all. As long as I am true to me and I do what I feel rather than try to do something someone else has done. My sound is a music that evokes emotion.

Singersroom: It sounds like what your saying is music is you being comfortable with yourself and growing rather than attempting to put something out there that is not you.

Ayah: I have a lot of very talented friends and I know a lot of people who are talented and a lot of time you get in the studio and you be like what are you working on and they say something like “I have this song that kind of sounds like this or kind of sounds like this sound by this artist or I’m trying to work on a song that sounds like this person’s album.” I just scratch my head like don’t do that. Don’t say you want to do something that sounds like this person’s song that is out already. Even if you feel like it is a little similar, do what you can to make it as different as you can.

Singersroom: Uniqueness is key…

Ayah: It doesn’t have to be unique to the point where you are doing something so different. Because music is new and you can experiment but at the same time music is a very classic old thing that has been through the history of time so at the same time everybody borrows from everybody. Everything that you do now was obviously influenced by something you’ve heard along the way whether it be bad or good. I’m not saying people are going to do something totally different but don’t try to be the same.

Singersroom: So when you are making songs do you think about fans?

Ayah: Right when I am making…no. I can’t afford to think about anything but the song right when I am making it. [I] do later down the line. You hope that your fans like your creation. You hope you will find new fans. You hope the old [fans] won’t hate what you just did. But at the end of the day, I can’t say I don’t have the fans in mind but do I what I feel is right for the song.

Singersroom: Since you put so much of yourself into the music, do you have a fear people will not understand you at times?

Ayah: Me personally, throughout my life I have been misunderstood a lot and I know a lot of people through their lives will be misunderstood at one point or another. I’m twenty-three now and I want to say I have reached an age…point in my life where I will try to be as honest as possible, as detailed as possible, as intricate as possible and as understanding as possible and try to really understand myself so I can try to help the listeners understand me.

Singersroom: You are working with the Girls Action foundation; it seems like a great thing because you are helping to shape young girl’s self-esteem or body image. Was there something you went through that lead you to work with the foundation?

Ayah: I guess that within my life, being a girl and trying to becoming a woman, I went through all those things a lot. I moved around a lot [and] sometimes I had to grow up too fast. I had to learn to adapt really fast to different culture and different people. I went to like four different high schools and four different elementary schools and things like that. It was definitely difficult growing up but that is what helps me now. Maybe that is what makes me feel I have to help where I can. I can help younger girls to try to put their priorities in order and realize what life is really about and how to go about certain things.

Singersroom: Do you have a mentor?

Ayah: Not specifically but yes. My dad is so cool; he’s such a good businessman. He is into taking risk. We moved around my whole life because he felt there was a better life where ever we moved to or whatever job he took. There are a lot of people I could look up to in the world but a mentor I actually get to sit with and talk to and watch [it’s]; my dad.

Singersroom: You said you have so much emotion and you can take risk. Do you feel it is freeing to have the ability to take risk?

Ayah: I think you have to [take risk]. A few months ago my sister bought me these tarot cards, I don’t know why. I went through them one day and I opened up the fool card. The card was of this guy walking happily about to walk off a cliff. I looked in the book and it said the reason why he is a fool is because he didn’t care about the outcome. He’s just like I have to do this; I have to jump off the cliff and hope I can fly by holding an umbrella. I am the fool, for music I am the fool.

Singersroom: What does your album title 4:15 mean?

Ayah: 4:15 is when I feel I am the realest me. My glasses are on, my contacts are off, my make-up off, I’m wearing my sweats and I’m chillin at home working on music. —— By: Interview By Adeniyi Omisore

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