Music Break: Asa

The self-titled debut album of Nigerian singer Asa (pronounced ASH-ah) came out in 2007, but her hit record “Fire on the Mountain”‘s mere 2,800 views on YouTube tells me that, like me until a month ago, you probably haven’t heard of her.

That’s a shame, because Asa’s beautiful melodies and clean, fresh song-writing are some of the best I’ve heard in a while. Her music is R&B meets Hip Hop meets folk, and she sounds like a cross between Bob Marley, Traci Chapman and, at times, Lucinda Williams. Have a listen/watch:

Now, tell me you’re not in love with her unassuming demeanor, thick-rimmed glasses, perfect timing and intoxicating diction. (What’s up with that selective drawl she uses?)

The 27-year-old was born in Paris and lived in Nigeria since she was two. She’s a big deal in Nigeria, and has made a splash on European charts and around Africa. Her career is just getting started, but Marco Werman’s comparison to the greats — Marvin, Bob and others — doesn’t seem far-fetched.

Asa has been on a loop on my iPod for the last week. Stop sleepin’ on her!

Here’s one more for the road:

One thought on “Music Break: Asa

  1. You’ve gotta be joking if u just heard Asa (what planet have you been on … lol just joking) … anyway good you did find her album. Meanwhile the reason why her Youtube videos have very few views is because her “label” notifies Youtube to take them down whenever they find them. I have some playlists with Asa videos and I find that they “disappear” quite often but happily someone else uploads and voila … we Asa fans keep going.

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