Tuesday, 23 April 2024

Adaorah: I’m ready for 2024 [Excl. Interview].

I’ve taken this year to create, to restructure my sound and direction or strategy. So next year, you’d be hearing a lot of Adaorah and you are never getting tired of it.

– Adaorah.

In recent times, the new female artists coming into the music industry have been able to attach some form of uniqueness not only to their aesthetics, but to their sonic style and the overall shape they want their art to take. You need not look back too far to find the physical manifestations of how important the uniqueness of these elements have helped catapulted female artists like Tems and Ayra Starr into success in their various forms.

Adaorah’s career may have gone under the radar for its best part so far, but things are beginning to take a sharp turn. Adaorah, born Chantel Adaorah Chukwuemeka, is one the growing list of captivating female artists going through a rise into the bubbly scene and doing it solely with offering a high art quality. Although, so much interesting moments abound for the exciting Adaorah, but it is her knack for creating music that could possibly resonates with different sects of listeners that sets her apart.

Our representative caught up with the exciting and energetic Adaorah, who naturally seems so free spirited and has a charming personality. In our chat, we discussed on her view of music, the application of that knowledge, her career and what’s next for her.

A-T: How would you describe yourself and your personality?

ADAORAH: I think I’m probably your next best friend. In general, I’m very fun, bubbly and like to have people around. My music reflects my personality where its energetic, its fun, it’s a little sassy and it’s sexy. I want everyone to feel the same way when they listen too. Adaorah is your girl next door with a little finesse. Also, she is a fire cracker on the stage. You know how Beyoncé has her alter ego, I also have mine on the stage cause its really different from the girl next door, this girl is a powerhouse.

A-T: The confidence is cool. How was it growing up?

ADAORAH: It was eclectic, I must say. I was born in Nigeria, but I moved to the states in the early years of my life. I grew up in Chicago for most of my adolescence life and then moved to Los Angeles after university. Now I’m in a place where I shuffle between Los Angeles and Lagos because I love Afrobeats and I want to be part of the scene and have my head to the ground. I want to be intertwined in that space and understand how the sound is evolving continuously. LA is great as well cause I want to channel what people are listening to in the States, so I can combine that in my music so its almost universal.

A-T: Since you moved early, you definitely had influences here and there. Tell us about them.

ADAORAH: It’s a long list, get ready. First, I love Beyoncé, I think she’s a default for me because she is so amazing. I think she is the exact replica of what I want to achieve as an artist, not only because she is vocally talented, she is also an amazing businesswoman. She has got this amazing stage presence and she gives a show. I try to emulate her and I try to bring my audience on a journey when I perform. I also love Michael Jackson, he is so creative and he gives his all on the stage as well. I love Tina Turner as well. Those are like my top 3. On the Afrobeats side, I really love Flavour. I love how he channels the hypnotic moods and I really emulate that in his music. Also, I love Burna Boy cause I think he has taken the next step in bringing Afrobeats to the globe. His fusion of Afrobeats with other genre has really elevated the genre. I love Tiwa Savage, I mean she is the OG and is the go to example for all female artists.

A-T: How did they help to shapen you and your music?

ADAORAH: I think vocally, I aspire for like Beyoncé. She adds layers to her music and got impressive runs and vocal ranges. I love that part of her music and it’s something I aspire to do because it’s an intricate part of music ajd it’s almost becoming a lost art. Sonically, I really love the idea of fusing music just like Burna Boy’s direction. I want to take music that we love and infuse with something else. I want to take an old music we all love, remake it into something fresh and new in that it brings those nostalgic feels.

A-T: What fuelled your decision to make music?

ADAORAH: I’ve been doing music for a very long time, since I was a kid. it just makes me very happy and allows me to express myself in a way I can’t when I’m talking to someone. So, music is kind of my safe space because it makes me happy. When I get on stage, that is me in my elements cause I feel so alive. I love music and I love how diverse it can be and I’m happy to be a part of it.

A-T: When did it all start properly?

ADAORAH: Professionally, it all started in high school. When I went to college in this visual arts academy, I actually learned the techniques and theory of music. I used to sing Arias and perform. I understood the orgination of music and its earlier pioneers. I understood the roots, development and concept of music. I was able to take that knowledge and apply it how I approach my own music. I also learned about the African pioneers too because that’s very important. All of this helped me a lot.

A-T: As a disapora, why did you choose Afrobeats?

ADAORAH: I’ll be very honest with you, even though I left Nigeria, Nigeria never left me. My parents were very adamant to ensure we maintained our culture and stayed in touch in all aspect. We were always attending traditional occasions that reminded us of home and we always came back too many times. That part never left me and so it felt so natural to come to Afrobeats and grow it along with my American side.

A-T: Music is a regarded as a release of what the artist is currently feeling. Does this apply to your music?

ADAORAH: That’s a great question. I will say it’s half and half. Sometimes, I might be feeling something and then say to myself that this is so good and I need to get this on paper. There are other times I hear a friend’s story, it didn’t happen to me but I’m able to translate that into music. I think part of creating is telling your story and some other times other people’s story.

A-T: From your music, it easy to deduce that it comes from a place of immense focus. Tell us about your recording process.

ADAORAH: It’s really weird. It goes one of two ways. Sometimes, I would hear a melody in my head and then I start humming it and get a voice memo out. Then I approach a producer who helps to create and bring it to life, I’ve done that a few times and it’s fun. On some other time, our producer would have a beat for me, I start humming and proceed to singing gibberish to it. The word you take out of the gibberish can help to evolve the rest of the music. It’s just a vibe and everything flows out from it.

A-T: As a budding artist, you need to define your sound. How has it been working with other producers to create that?

ADAORAH: Sometimes I feel like producers make beats based on what they feel. Sometimes they feel sad, and I don’t, I feel happy so I want something happy. I like to go through their discography and see what fits my vibe. I don’t let the producers define my sound, I define my sound myself.

A-T: Do you produce or give inputs to assist the producer in the production process?

ADAORAH: I don’t produce. I can vocal record and I can do enough to put my thing together at home. It’s one of my goals to learn how to produce, because some times producers are not always available and you need to get what’s in your head down so badly, so I really need to learn and 2024 I’m going to do that.

A-T: Tell us about your sound, how would you describe it?

ADAORAH: This is a tricky question. I don’t want to pitch myself or my sound into a particular box, so I’ll describe it as FUSION. Although, the music will always be energetic, fun and its gonna make you feel good. My music is always gonna make you feel something. Whether you are sad or happy, or wanting to be loved, my music will always make you feel something.

A-T: Is this a direction you always ensure to follow?

ADAORAH: As much as my music will always make you feel something, or most times, there is a message to it, but truly sometimes you just want to dance and have a good time and forget all your worries. So its one of the things I’ve been working on in my EP set for next year. I’m just really excited for people to vibe to it.

A-T: What has been the highs and the lows since you started making music ?

ADAORAH; I think the high has to be finally releasing Rock My Body. Like I said, I’ve been doing music for a long time, but I have never released something I could call my own. I’ve worked with people and labels to write songs, but I have never heard something to say this is Adaorah’s. So, that was the highest moment, because it catapulted into what we are now because people are only paying attention to the music because of that moment. The lows is just centered around the fact that music is very unpredictable. When doing a normal job, you know what steps to take to get what you want, but with music, it’s so different. You can make music for ten years and it doesn’t go anywhere, but one day you can make a song and it goes viral. I think it just those emotional roller-coaster and second guessing if you’re good or not. However, I think I’m in a great place where I have overcomed the second guessing because I’m confident in my myself and my artistry. All that is left is for the world to see it.

A-T: On major platforms, you got few singles credited to you considering you’ve been making music for a long time.

ADAORAH: I have been making music for a long time and I’m happy to do that. I wasn’t actively creating songs, but I was writing songs for other persons. In the new year, the first quarter, I’m releasing my next single which is a collaboration with an old Afrobeats singer from the late 80s and early 90s. The song is a popular one, if you don’t know it, then your parents will. What we did is we remade the track and we are excited to release it by Q1 next year and the EP soon afterwards.

A-T; This year, you only released a single, tell us about it.

ADAORAH: This year is a lot. It was a lot coming from Rock My Body to Slow Down and then to Peace of Mind. What I want to do is, I don’t want to rush the music. I want to slow down, because music is my art and it’s my child. Since you don’t rush to make a child, so I’m not rushing to release music too. I’ve taken this year to create, to restructure my sound and direction or strategy. So next year, you’d be hearing a lot of Adaorah and you are never getting tired of it. There will be a lot more coming out and the plan is to continue to make music and more ongoing releases so my fans can really enjoy my music and follow me on my journey.

A-T: How do you feel you’ve been able to push the Afrobeats collective in the States?

ADAORAH: I feel like Afrobeats doesn’t need much help anymore. When they say Afrobeats to the world, it is real. You would see a foreigner vibing to Yoruba song. I think Afrobeats has made its stake and is here to stay. It’s obvious with the collaborations we are getting in the shape of Selena Gomez, Camilla Cabello, H.E.R. Everyone wants a bit of Aforbeats and it’s good to see. I just want to bring my sound and let everyone vibe to it as well.

A-T: Which artists do you intend to work with?

ADAORAH: I would love to work with Rema. I think he is amazing and our sound fits perfectly with mine. We will make fire in the studio. The list is long actually but I will like to work with Tiwa Savage, Burna Boy, Asake. I’ll love to do a track with Flavour, 2 Baba, The Caveman, Davido, Wizkid and so on.

A-T: What message should we leave for your fans?

ADAORAH: Follow me on all of my socials, because 2024 will be exciting. Prepare your ears because once you hear this music, you wouldn’t want it to stop.

– This interview is created and written by Adebayo Boluwatife, an Album Talks writer. ( Twitter: @BIG_BOLUWATIFE).

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