Creating the Soundtracks for Life



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A Return to Real R&B

ZanYé (pronounced: ZAHN-yay) is not afraid to be real. She had a difficult childhood. She’s raising a family. She knows marriage takes work. And she’s lost a loved one to tragedy. She’s learned we don’t go through life alone, and the only way to cope is to be real.

She also knows the flip side to hard times is joy. And to get there, and stay there, sometimes we have to talk things out.

“Conversations,” her new SoundThought Recordings release is about relationships, the good, the bad; relationships with life, and romantic relationships – what it takes to stay in one, and keep the fire burning.

As her second CD, there was no better time than now for “Conversations.”

“It’s a project of healing, of real life experiences, and real relationship experiences,” says the singer.

Her aim was to create songs that are counter to a lot of the music of the day. Music that, in her impression somewhat glorifies the “’I don’t need you’ concept.

That’s just not realistic,” she says.

So ZanYé offers what she says are songs that dive below the surface and sing of the all too well-known emotions of what love really is in “Crazy Love,” “Extra Ordinary,” “I’m Gonna Keep Ya,” and “Mistake.”

And tracks that bounce back up and make you want to dance for the sheer joy of living like “Feels Like Rain,” “Keep It Moving,” and “Celebrate.”

Then ZanYé puts her spin on two classic tracks “Funny Valentine,” which she speeds up and jazzes out, and “Don’t Let It Go To Your Head” the 1978 Jean Carne soul/R & B classic.

The title track “Conversations” pulls the whole album together and explains why “just talking” is important.

“A conversation is the beginning of any relationship,” says the singer. “If you have children, when they’re tiny you’re teaching them to talk; you’re developing that verbal communication, which helps to build that relationship.

Conversations are the start of everything. Without conversations we just co-exist. So I thought it was important to call it ‘Conversations’ and bring that out in the music.”

ZanYé is confident this album comes from a place of huge growth – life, lyrically and vocally – since her fist album “My Story Today,” produced in 2012.

“I was very green and hadn’t been in the studio in over ten years,” ZanYé chuckles.

For “Conversations” the singer partnered with producer, singer/songwriter Inohs Sivad on her SoundThought Recordings label in Detroit, Michigan. This partnership brought with it a songwriting team (Inohs Sivad, Lavell Williams, Dana Anderson and Naomi Daniel), adding to the vocalists existing team of Kyle Rushing, Anesha Birchett and Antea Shelton.

There was also a blending of musicians – Tony Gordon (keys), and STR’s team of Deus Christian (bass and guitar), Chris Donaldson and Duane Dawkins, Sr. (drums).

ZanYé believes you can pretty much say anything through music. It’s a format that touches not only her heart, but other’s, as well.

“This music works for me because it’s my outlet for everyday life. Some people cook, some people jog… music is that outlet for me.”



Conversations (2014)

Available July 27, 2014