In Conversation With: Indyanah
Indyanah's For Now, is a sexy savage anthem. Produced by music maestro Tendai, the track battles the contrasting themes of love and lust, whilst confronting the pressures of women having to be ‘the submissive one’ in modern day relationships. Indyanah hails the modern day female ‘savage’, ‘the femme fatale’ who exudes fearless energy, is dominant and knows exactly what she wants in life and in her relationships. Written during the pandemic, mid-lockdown, the soulful soundscape was inspired by unapologetically ‘yearning for intimacy’ and living vicariously through flashbacks. Laced with hypnotic harmonies and bold melodies, she flexes her unwavering talent not only as an artist but also a skilful songwriter.
If you were to introduce yourself in three sentences, what would you say?
I would say that I'm a very fun, bubbly, energetic, intuitive woman. I am not here for games, I’m very direct but also with me even though I know what I want, I will do it in a subtle way. Not too abrupt and my last sentence would be “I'm just that girl period!”
How has your family influenced you, when it comes to music?
My mum, my dad - they don't play instruments but I was fully immersed into the different styles of music they played around me. The only person that played an instrument was my grandad, he played the drums and he made me see the depths that were within music. He made me really understand music. He had vinyls, all the CDs of the artists he listened to, I was like “okay, my grandad is actually tapped in”. Also, every Sunday I would have to go to my grandparents on the way to church and he would only play music from Magic FM and Smooth Radio, the music on there was all I knew. So every time we would be on our way to church, that’s the only radio station he would play, and it would piss me off sometimes *laughs*. But little did I know, that was the best stuff. I really appreciate it because now I’m much more musically inclined. It’s not just one genre I like, I can understand and appreciate rock, jazz and classical music as opposed to just sticking to one sound. I try to experiment and implement different sounds when making my own music.
My aunty also influenced me too. Whenever we would watch films, she would pause it and ask “what song is this? Who sang this?” And she would even harmonise with the songs playing *laughs*. She was also quick to recognise when a song had been sampled.
What made you consciously take the step to pursue a career as a singer/songwriter?
I would say, when I was in secondary school and I was doing GCSEs, I picked music and within my school we would do shows and my teacher, Mr Acksford, really pushed me to do music and then when it came to the last year of secondary school and we were looking for the colleges I may want to attend, he told me to go to ELAM (East London Arts Music), I thought “okay, let me see”. I applied and went to my audition, got in and started to really enjoy it, but the thing is I never knew that I wanted to be a singer but I always said that I wanted to do something within the music industry. I've always said that. Maybe subconsciously but I never said it out loud, but when I went to college it made me realise anything is possible, I can actually do this. I didn’t realise that singing was something I could do until I went to college. They taught us how to move, how to do certain things and what not to do. Our college felt like the movie F.A.M.E. It felt like a dream.
Which artists would you say have influenced you the most?
Vocally, I would say Brandy. When it comes to tonality - Jazmine Sullivan, I was so obsessed with her when I was younger. When it comes to soul, I would say Erykah Badu.
3 artists that you would love to collaborate with in this lifetime?
Brandy, Kanye West, and Beyonce. Especially with Beyonce, I really appreciate how she involved herself in every part of the process when making her projects.
So let’s talk about your new single For Now, what inspired you to write this song?
At the time, I was at uni but I didn’t really want to be there. I just went to the studio and wrote it within that session. I was in the studio with Tendai, he had this red light that he put on and I thought “Oop, this light is giving a vibe”, it was giving red light district. My creative juices just started flowing inspired by the red light. Subconsciously, I believe I wanted something out of the ordinary to happen. As I was writing I just felt that the lyrics was giving sneaky link because I had a boyfriend at the time, but I never do that. I think I was writing what I wanted deep down. Even when I played it to him, he was asking who I was talking about? *laughs*.
What was it like having Tendai in the studio with you, and what was the lead up to having him produce this track?
We went to the same college! I heard a track that he produced for one of my friends and I was like “who produced this? This production is like woah! It’s just so sexy” so I thought to shout him and he said “yeah let’s do something!” and I've been working with him ever since. Every time I’m in the studio with him, I feel challenged in a good way, it’s made me realise how intentional I need to be when making music.
When it came to recording For Now with him, it was very intense because it was new territory singing a song like this and mind you, this was one of my first proper sessions singing a sexual song like this. I was in my head a lot but I still felt calm.
For Now addresses the contrasting themes of love and lust. I believe it’s safe to assume our readers know what lust is but what does it mean to love you, what does making you feel love look like?
To love me is to be kind to me, making a conscious effort to understand me, to listen to me and to make me feel safe.
It would’ve been 2 years since your last release, what have you learned during this time when it comes to your artistry as a singer songwriter and why did you decide that For Now was the song to release?
I’ve learnt to be myself! To be me! In the beginning, I was finding it difficult to share my real-life experiences through my music whilst still being able to maintain my privacy. I didn’t want to share the details but share enough that could be understood without compromising the integrity of my story. Before I felt that I was very vague and unrelatable. I learnt that I needed to be real with it because that’s when my listeners will be able to connect.
I feel like For Now was the song to release now because it’s time! I wanted to give a song for the ladies to have some fun. I want the girlies to do them. Getting yours and keeping it moving on your own terms!
What top 5 characteristics would you say are the most important for you in your ideal romantic partner?
He needs to be funny, but I don’t know because I’m the funny one. But besides that, I would love for him to be kind, generous, smart, so he knows not to lose me! He would have to be ambitious and rich, and I’m not just talking about money, I mean rich in knowledge, wisdom, rich in substance basically.
What should we expect from Indyanah next year?
You should expect some bangers coming and straight consistency! I would also love to be added to a Spotify playlist and hopefully be on a billboard
Listen to For Now here! Out Now!