The weekend is upon us again, and Chayuta the Belgian-born and Holland-raised newcomer has decided to give us an intimate window into her growth over the years as she transports us back to her younger years with her debut album. “I recorded the tracks on 17 when I was 16 and 17 years old. I wanted to release it as a tribute to my last few teenage years before becoming an adult,” she explains.
With her eclectic sound and vocal prowess, the Ghana-based artist dives into a soundscape that captures the beautiful sides of growth as she artistically tells us her story. Released via Layla Mokoena / Naa Ashitsoo Vanderpuve 17 according to the singer is a closure of her childhood days. In a way, she is telling the world that from 18 a more matured and different Chayuta is expected. To date, 17 is one of the singer’s most notable body of work and the project boasted an intriguing blend of contemporary R&B and afro-pop sensibilities.
Chayuta continues to hone her skills and come up fast on the rise, we speak to the singer talking about her unique sound, younger years, and what we can expect from her next.
Hey Chayuta! How are you?
Hey! I’m doing great! Thanks for having a chat with me.
Where did you grow up and how did your environment influence your music?
I was born in Belgium and spent the first few years of my life in Holland. Then moved to the UK for two years, from there went to South Africa for about one year, and then moved to Ghana permanently in 2013. So I’ve seen quite a lot of the world and this has definitely had an impact on my music. I grew up listening to basically all genres and when making music I pick influences from various genres and fuse them together.
Tell us about your sound! – How would you describe it?
Although I am relatively young in the music industry, I have been doing music for quite a long time. I started music at the age of nine and at that time I was doing training in classical music. I did four years of the ABRSM program at the Royal School of music in London but when I hit my teens, I decided classical music was not for me and I wanted to write and record my own songs. My sound is a fusion of afro pop and contemporary R&B. I love the afro beats sounds and I use the contemporary R&B way of recording and signing to showcase more vocal qualities. But basically, my extensive vocal training which I have been doing for over nine years now has prepared me to sing any genre.
Congratulations on your new album “17.” what was it inspired by?
I recorded the tracks on 17 when I was 16 and 17 years old. I wanted to release it as a tribute to my last few teenage years before becoming an adult. Because I have been doing music for so long already 17 was like closure for my childhood days and a way to let the world know that from 18, they will see a more mature and different Chayuta.
What makes it a body of work?
17 is a very versatile album. I got a lot of help from some big names in the industry during the creative process. The entire album was mixed and mastered by Mix Master Garzy, one of Africa’s best music producer and sound engineer. For songwriting, I got help from the likes of Jupitar, Kelvyn Boy, and Edem and they pushed me a lot to bring out the best in me. Working with Edem was the first time I ventured into reggae and I learned so much from him. It took more than a year to put the album together and I was part of the entire process; from creating the beats with Master Garzy in the studio to writing with various songwriters and eventually being present during the mixing and mastering process and I can say that I am extremely proud of the outcome.
What do you want your fans to take from your music?
It’s not easy being a young female artist in the music industry, especially in Ghana. I have had people advising me to do certain things to trend which I am personally not comfortable with. I want to show my fans and people who are inspired by me that if you have a dream, aspiration, or goal nothing should stop you from achieving those goals or dreams. Working hard, being true to yourself, and staying motivated is still the best way to achieve your goals. I hope when people read about my journey and listen to songs like Motivate, they get inspired to pursue their dreams.
Chayuta what’s next for you?
There’s a lot in the pipeline. I have been working very hard in the studio with various producers. I love to work ahead and have many songs ready so when the time is right to release the team and I will choose which song to release. As much as I love Ghanaian music, I am also working with industry people outside Ghana. The second half of the year will definitely be busy for me and then people will see what exactly I have been doing so far.