At her core, Savohna has always had music. Singing for as long as she can remember, she would pen songs and poetry as a kid who grew up in the choir and church. However, at 19, her life took an unexpected turn when she lost her brother.
“Grieving his loss reintroduced me to songwriting, and ever since then, I haven’t stopped. I began taking both Classical & Jazz Voice, and each day for the past five years I’ve worked towards my career and never looked back. In my darkest moments music was there for me, music and singing are my light at the end of the tunnel. And in that moment of grieving my brother, I feel like I realized my purpose in life.”
Channeling the darkest moments of her life, Savohna pushed on and from it created beauty and art. We talked about everything and then some from creative choices to those moments of darkness.
Kendra: ‘A Dark Prelude’ was born from some not-so-pleasant times in your life. Did recording this album in some way feel therapeutic?
Savohna: Recording “A Dark Prelude” was tough because when I first started it, I was going through a tough breakup. I was recording other music at the time, but couldn’t let go of the story that a dark prelude inspired. But recording it helped me heal. Not only from that break up, but other trauma in my past as well. Creating those songs not only let me express how I felt but process it as well. So yes, it was very therapeutic.
Kendra: Has music always been the thing you lean on during hard times?
Savohna: I have always leaned on music. Sometimes it felt like music was all I had. Music is my escape. It’s how I grow and learn, and process life and the world around me. I feel like I am music. It’s who I am, and I swear my heartbeat swings.
Kendra: Something that I couldn’t help but notice was that every song but one on ‘A Dark Prelude’ had a one-word title. Was that by accident or a creative choice?
Savohna: I went through this phase where I only titled my songs one word. I wanted it to be my thing lol, that’s why every song on ‘A Dark Prelude is one word. Part of me wanted to capture the emotion and/or the theme of the song, that another part of me was just being a cool kid.
Kendra: I’m a big fan of the ‘Drag Race’ realm and have noticed a lot of the queens are utilizing jewelry in their merch, and that’s something you’re doing as well. What prompted that merch idea, and are there any plans in the back of your head to start a jewelry line in the future?
Savohna: I chose to add jewelry to my merch collection because I’m a big fan of the idea of “lifestyle merch.” I like to think of these necklaces as amulets, a constant reminder to stay cool and breathe. Life gets so crazy, sometimes it’s helpful to have something physical you can touch to get you out of your head, that has a little reminder on it. It brings you back to the present, and it’s really good for anxiety.
Kendra: Posting about your music is one thing, but you also use your platform to share your thoughts and emotions about the ongoing racial inequalities in America. How do you feel the Black Lives Matter Movement has impacted the way artists, especially Black artists, have approached their craft in recent years?
Savohna: I feel like Black Lives Matter has been an ongoing movement in America (and this world) for the past 600 years, although it hasn’t always been coined ‘BLM.’ I feel that as a Black artist, I don’t just represent my clique or my subgroups, I also represent my people. And it’s important to use my voice in every sense of the word, to advocate for me and my people. My music and everything I do comes from Black Culture, both here in America and in Jamaica. So I just can’t take, and not give anything back. Even if what I’m giving is awareness, I still have to represent and give.
Kendra: It’s getting a little easier with the vaccine rollouts, but it’s still kind of hard to have a definite answer when it comes to future plans given the current state of everything, but as far as what you can control when it comes to your career and creativity – what do you have planned in the coming months for yourself?
Savohna: The pandemic has shifted the whole industry. I see a lot of artists moving towards virtual performances, and I’ve done a few as well on FB live. Right now I’m working on new music, and looking for new ways to let my fans in on my creative process. I see myself having more live performances and more behind-the-scenes videos/photos. No one knows how long this thing will last, so right now I’m focused on making new music and connecting with my fans in new and more meaningful ways online.