Speaking to the Independent on Saturday this week, Asa, 37, said she drew her musical inspiration from personal experiences, observations and from people’s stories - such as those of love, arranged marriages and when parents don’t approve of their children’s choice of partner, among others. “I’m young. What stories could I have? I just hope I do a good service to the people whose stories I tell in my music.”
She said she was also content with solitude. “I’m a simple and ‘chilled’ person; I enjoy reading to an extent that I feel at times I don’t get any work done,” she said, referencing her latest read, Maximum City by Seketu Mehta, which she recommended highly.
She explained how her grandfather was the inspiration for one of her songs, Awe, meaning “hey you”. “Whenever he said Awe, you knew you were in trouble,” she said, joking.
On being a black female artist, Asa said there were challenges, and she advised up-and-coming musicians to believe in and trust in “the process”.
She said artists needed to find their voices, be themselves and trust their own minds because that’s what would made them “stand out”.
Asa will perform in Johannesburg today at Constitutional Hill as part of the country’s Africa Day celebrations.
Her performance at Zakifo is part of her southern African tour ahead of the release of her new album in August. She is working on a second video from the album. For more dates and venues for the festival, visit www.zakifo.com.Independent On Saturday