Rising Nigerian Singer/Songwriter COCOA is poised to leave a lasting first impression [make a huge splash] on the current African music landscape with her excellent debut single “Why” and is not only taking a different route in doing so, she is also making a bold statement with it! With her excellent R&B/Soul ballad of a debut aptly titled “Why” – laced with its exceptional vocals and moving lyrics that tug at your heart strings, Cocoa is giving listeners and critics alike a very welcome departure from the club tracks and dance floor fillers that have dominated African music in 2012. Superbly produced by TeeBeeO [Big Boyz Ent.] and wonderfully co-written by Cocoa and TeeBeeO, “Why” is a captivating and emotional debut that heralds the arrival of an exceptionally gifted new talent into the world of African music. About her debut single, Cocoa says, “this song is a ballad narrating the emotional turmoil of being in the wrong kind of relationship. A lot of women out there share similar experiences so this track lets them know that they are not alone and hopefully they gather strength from that”. The emotion filled vocals and captivating lyrics that fuel this beautifully crafted ballad make for a perfect introduction into the world of Afrobeats and African music for Cocoa. | ENJOY!!!
Born in the little town of Ibadan and raised in the vibrant city of Lagos, the natural talents of Singer/Songwriter Cocoa were very apparent from early on in her life. She started performing Church solos at the age of six, won her first ever talent show at the age of 14 and started leading solos backed by an entire mass choir at the age of 17, so it’s a bit of a wonder that she never really considered a career in music until much later. “My father used to be a DJ and my mother has always been in the choir, so my musical abilities were always encouraged but it was never an option as a serious career choice”, she explains and as expected of any child from a West African household, Cocoa went on to complete her education and earn herself a degree in Psychology. However, shortly after graduating, Cocoa abandoned any such promising career her degree could have offered and instead, chose to pursue her passion and immediately enrolled in The British Academy of New Music in London to develop her musical skills further, be mentored by professional musicians and gain a broader perspective of the music industry. While at the British Academy of New Music, a performance of one of her original songs “Good Girl” at the MY UNI ROCKS competition where she represented her academy garnered Cocoa a regional title and attracted the attention of popular underground radio station Playvybz. Cocoa has subsequently gone on to perform at several live music venues across the UK including Rich Mix, Music Bar & Salford’s Blueprint Studios to mention a few. Commenting on her music, Luke Hannam of Gramme describes Cocoa as “solid, contemporary and stylish” and after reviewing her performance at The Gramophone in Shoreditch, Rod Kitson of Greenwich Times writes that “[Cocoa] looks and sounds every inch like a star in the making”. With her musical influences coming from such great artists as Bob Marley, Michael Jackson, Beyoncé, Anita Baker and Amy Winehouse, Cocoa has successfully blended these different styles and sounds of music to shape her own very unique and distinct sound. “Growing up I was exposed to a lot of different styles of music,” Cocoa explains, “I’d wake to the sounds of Fred Hammond early in the morning, be welcomed home from school in the afternoons by the sounds of Fela Kuti and watch the likes of Destiny’s Child on the music channel with my sisters”. Cocoa is constantly seeking to develop herself and continues to record and write new music with various producers and in the process, has had the privilege of meeting and working with award-winning Afrobeats artist and producer JJC, sibling Afro Pop duo 2Kriss and Teebeeo among others while garnering valuable lessons about the African music landscape. Her debut single, the excellent R&B/Soul ballad “Why” is out NOW.
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