Celebrity songstress Jane Awindor a.k.a, Efya, has been Ghana’s belle of the ball since her debut in 2006. Teasing the paparazzi with her good looks and dazzling audiences with her soulful sounds, Efya’s top-of-the-game status stands strong. Her much anticipated new album, Love Genesis includes tracks featuring collaborations with some of the music industry’s big boys. Taking a breather over a cocktail, Efya opened up to TimeOut about her musical influences, the new album and Accra hot spots.
TOA: Which venues do you enjoy playing in?
Efya: The National Theatre has to be up there, with the stage that goes up and down. The Republic is always a nice place to perform at because of the crowd, especially when you are doing indie stuff, it’s a great place to express yourself because they don’t judge you. The same goes for Alliance Francaise because it is all about putting on good music and something different.
TOA: Who have you collaborated with and which was the best experience?
Efya: Ghanaian musicians would have to be Kwame Yeboah, Deep Black, SonniBalli, M.anifest, J-Town, J-Soul. We all work really well together. I’ve not really done any female collaborations yet, ‘cause you know how it is [laughs]! International artists? I’ve done songs with Wizkid, Black Magic, Lynx, Waje, but I think the best would have to be Sarkodie because we have done a lot of music together and it always hits out, we work so well together.
TOA: Which Ghanaian and international legends would you like to collaborate with
Efya: From Ghana I would love to work with “Koja Entry” “George Dako” , Amachi Dede I love him. Rama Brew, her voice is amazing, also her sister, Bibi Bew. As for old cats, Japon ‘cause she is who she is, and … Pa Thomas! Rex Omar too! It’s nice to know that these guys know what I do now, I really appreciate it and I appreciate all their support when I want to express myself or talk to them about new ideas. As for internationally, Erica Badu and Jill Scott for sure, Jay Z of course, Renee who is not a legend yet but an icon of mine, she just got top most pop hits ever made.
TOA: How has Ghanahian music been influential to your sound?
Efya: Highlife is a great influence because it shows where I’m from. Putting a little Ghanaian music into my set always helps.
TOA: When did you start singing?
Efya: I’ve been singing since I was six years old, so that is a long time, that’s too many years!
TOA: What are the principal subjects you sing about?
Efya: Most of the time it’s about love and peace and parties. I mean I’m young and still experiencing things. I don’t want to get too confused about stuff, but I do understand love, so I sing about love a lot!
TOA: What can people expect from Love Genesis?
Efya: There’s going to be a lot of different music on there. There is some soul. There’s funk. Neo soul mix, techno – it’s a combination. And it’s great because the new era of music which we have now is about mixing all kinds of music.
TOA: Is it exhausting touring?
Efya: You need to tour to expand your horizon, to expand your levels. It is exhausting, so you need to keep healthy. It’s not easy though but it’s what we do.
TOA: Can you explain the renaissance of Ghanaian music?
Efya: We had to get there one day! I’m grateful that I’m part of it. People aren’t rejecting it, it’s a different kind of African music hitting the stores and people like it! We gotta keep the levels high to get bigger.
TOA: Where do you go out to party in Accra?
Efya: I’ll got to the Shisha Lounge and we’ll eat some pizza and then maybe to Movenpik and have some fun in the bar. Sometimes we go to Exel if we have a show there or most of the time we go to Shaka Zulu, which is the last place you go to before Twist. We always end up in Twist. Django we go to a lot. La Roma bar is good too.
Listen to some tracks on our Spotify playlist