Yola Stands Up For Herself

New Yola Release July 21

Yola – Photo: Joseph Ross Smith

YOLA to release new album
via EASY EYE SOUND on July 30

Yola‘s Walk Through Fire was our favourite album of 2019.

Now, the peerless singer has announced an anthemic new album Stand For Myself, to be released via Easy Eye Sound on July 30, 2021. Produced by Dan Auerbach (who was at the helm of her previous offering), the album is reportedly a sonic shift from her debut album, with a diverse and eclectic mix of symphonic soul and classic pop.

The single “Diamond Studded Shoes” has debuted:

About the single, Yola states:

“This song explores the false divides created to distract us from those few who are in charge of the majority of the world’s wealth and use the ‘divide and conquer’ tactic to keep it. This song calls on us to unite and turn our focus to those with a stranglehold on humanity.”

Yola added “The video is in part inspired by the Truman show and is about being trapped in a false construct. It is supposedly perfect, but you’re trapped in a life that wasn’t meant for you. I wanted to convey the feeling that everything you know to be true is not quite working the way it’s supposed to. The island at the end is a paradigm of mental conditioning, we are all trapped on an island of our own thinking, until we change it.”

Last year, the pandemic derailed Yola’s plans to tour stadiums (with Chris Stapleton and The Black Keys) as well as numerous festival plays. In addition, her plans were sidelined to fly to Australia to film a role as Sister Rosetta Tharpe in the new Baz Luhrmann Elvis biopic. Yola used this unexpected gift of time and space as she began to craft the songs that would eventually become those on Stand For Myself.

Some songs began in the twilight hours of Yola’s pandemic isolation, reflecting on her personal and our collective moments of longing and awakening. Other songs germinated years ago and were inspired by personal moments, including “Break The Bough”, which Yola started to write following her mother’s funeral. Tracks were also co-written with Ruby Amanfu, John Bettis, Pat McLaughlin, Natalie Hemby, Joy Oladokun, Paul Overstreet, Liz Rose, Aaron Lee Tasjan, Hannah Vasanth and Bobby Wood. Recorded later in 2020 with a rhythm section that included bassist Nick Movshon, noted for his work with Amy Winehouse and Bruno Mars, alongside drummer and rising solo artist, Aaron Frazer.

Stand For Myself finds Yola urging us to challenge the biases that fuel bigotry, inequality and tokenism, which have deeply impacted her personal life and professional career.

Stand For Myself draws inspiration from seminal albums she discovered via her Mother’s 70’s record collection, as well as the eclectic mix tapes she created, listening to British radio, featuring everything from 90’s neo soul to R&B and britpop. All which sound-tracked her childhood and teenage years in Bristol, England. From stress-induced voice loss to living on London’s streets, Yola has navigated it all to launch her genre-fluid solo career. She achieved breakout success with her debut Walk Through Fire, which landed her four Grammy nominations including Best New Artist.

Yola adds,

“I kind of got talked out of being me, and now I’m here. This is who I’ve always been in music and in life. There was a little hiatus where I got brainwashed out of my own majesty, but a bitch is back.”

Walk Through Fire Tracklist

1. Barely Alive
2. Dancing Away In Tears
3. Diamond Studded Shoes
4. Be My Friend
5. Great Divide
6. Starlight
7. If I Had To Do It All Again
8. Now You’re Here
9. Whatever You Want
10. Break The Bough
11. Like A Photograph
12. Stand For Myself

Live dates planned include Newport Folk and Newport Jazz, and performing with Chris Stapleton on his rescheduled tour in 2021 and headlining the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville in 2022.




New Yola Release July 21

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Author: Rob Dickens

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