QUOYAH: The Moment My Sky Cracked Open | CoRoNista June 2023 Issue

QUOYAH: The Moment My Sky Cracked Open | CoRoNista June 2023 Issue

Black Music Month is a time to celebrate the art of black music and its profound impact on American society. It's also a time to reflect on the struggles that Black artists have faced in making their music heard and appreciated by mainstream audiences.

This month's featured cover is Quoyah, is a local Indie artist whose music on Spotify is picking up popularity. My husband introduced me to her music and I can tell you, she definitely has a gift and talent for music.

Thank you so much for joining me today! It's officially Black Music Month and I have a few questions that I want to ask you about who you are and how your music is a game-changer to the Neo-Soul genre. Tell us who you are and what you do.

Hola! My name is Quoyah and I am a singer/songwriter and emerging entrepreneur. You'll appreciate my music if you're a lover of melodic trances, poetic words and hypnotizing beats. My music is truly like a journal/conversation with God and its raw. And I hope its relatable, I just want the peeps to feel something and know they aren't alone in this world.

What got you started working as an Indie artist, and what motivates you each day to do what you do?

So I've been singing since a child. I was heavily influenced by my parent's music taste. My dad used to play Sade, Coldplay, Seal, John Legend, and Cee-lo Green all the time. My mom used to play people like Anthony Hamilton, Mary J Blige and Lauryn Hill.

I used to try my hardest to sing just like whichever artist I was listening to. My grandma also influenced me to sing in the her church in Jersey every time we traveled up to visit family and so that helped me to break out of my shyness. It wasn't until I went to VCU and was introduced to other creatives who legit took their careers seriously when I began to take my music career seriously, too. Before then, I thought my childhood dreams of singing for large crowds were just dreams; unattainable. But once I decided on this path, new doors opened up to me. My main motivation for creating songs is to hope that I can be understood through the best means I can. I feel like singing my message makes it taste a little sweeter, rather than blunt words.

What's your biggest accomplishment as an artist up to date?

My biggest accomplishment as a singer was the opportunity to perform on a YouTube series called "FLWRS ". This series consisted of a range of musicians learning my song "Bad Habits" and adding a spin to it! It was really amazing being amongst so many talented musicians speaking a language I am unfamiliar with but know intuitively. After we recorded the song together, I was interviewed by Jenn (the videographer of the FLWRS series). It felt like a sneak peek into my future as a singer and it was inspiring to me.

What's one of the hardest things that comes with being an artist?

The hardest thing for me to do as an artist is to learn to not value other people's opinions OVER my own.. this is still something I'm trying to overcome. For me, the life of an artist is a vulnerable and strong life. I am vulnerable because I am putting my heart on the line whenever I sing. Those are my values, my thoughts and opinions open freely to the world's critique... But for the same reasons, its strong for the same reasons. And the more I tell my story and sing and write my songs, the more I feel alive and fully in my purpose. So trusting yourself, in my opinion, is the hardest thing for me as an artist.

What are the top 3 tips you'd give to anyone that's looking to live the life of an artist today?

Hmm.. 3 tips to anyone looking to live the life of an artist...

1. Keep going. No matter who tries to stop you with intentions of 'wanting the best for you'.. trust yourself, trust God and keep on your path. The people who are supposed to get it, WILL.

2. Commit. Commit to getting the life that you envision for yourself. It takes a true and deep commitment, just like it does with a romantic partner.

3. Surround yourself with a good solid group of friends who like the same things as you OR friends who wanna see you win and help you get to where you wanna go. Keep that circle small, with good intentioned true friends and you'll bloom, honey. Environment holds a huge key to success, in my opinion.

How can readers work with you + connect online?

Readers can connect with me online through social media or email which are listed below:

Instagram: @whosquoyah

TikTok: @quoyahwilson

Email: shequoyah@gmail.com

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