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Ganavya: Touching the sky


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TALENTED vocalist, multiinstrumentalist and composer Ganavya has always offered something unique with her songs.

The musical maestro continues that run of impressive music releases with her new studio album, Like The Sky I’ve Been Too Quiet. Released via Shabaka Hutchings’ Native Rebel Recordings, the album features contributions from leading artists and sees Ganavya deliver 13 immersive songs such as Forgive Me My, showcasing the beauty of her emotive voice.

Eastern Eye caught up with the American artist to find out more.

What first connected you to music?

My mother’s love, her love of music and my father’s constant bathroom singing.

How do you reflect on your music journey up until now?

A pilgrimage. Meeting other pilgrims on the way. Some days are beautiful, some days are in-between. All days are a journey towards love.

What has been your most memorable musical moment so far?

I can’t think of a specific one. For me, every moment feels equally precious.

What inspired your new studio album?

Love. Grief. A desire to keep making music with Shabaka, a brother I genuinely look up to.

Tell us about the album.

Not sure what to say — we gathered, we met each other for the first time, we played and we prayed. And now it exists.

The sound of the album is quite unique, how would you describe it?

Improvisation – it’s just the sound of people meeting people, of grammars meeting grammars.

Of understandings, misunderstandings, of language, of gathering…

Who are you hoping connects with these songs?

All my people. And my people are everyone.

Do you have a favourite song on the album?

Nope. To be honest, I probably won’t listen to the album much. I don’t listen to recordings of myself.

It’s unnatural, and sometimes I feel sick if I do. I trust Shabaka to do it for me, though.

I trust Shabaka with many things. He is a good brother to have in life.

How do you manage to generate so much emotion in your voice?

(Laughs) Live a difficult life. I wouldn’t recommend it, though.

What music is currently dominating your own personal playlist?

Nothing. I wish I had time to listen to music, but it’s been an insane month. I turn on Star Trek to watch and am asleep before the credits are finished.

If you could master something new in music, what would it be?

Master is a word and concept that should be retired. I am not trying to be anyone’s master – what a word. But yes, a skill I want to spend more time developing is probably sight reading. Or is it site reading?

That should tell you how much I just don’t work with scores. Most of my life I have had the honour of working with musicians, who let me sing each part out to them, and they listen and play back.

Who would you love to collaborate with?

Les Filles de Illighadad.

Why should we all pick up the new album?

I’m not answering that. That’s not for me to answer. It’ll find the people it’s meant to find.

That’s how life works. I don’t say or do anything.

What does music mean to you today?

Prayer. And prayer done right is love.


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