Joya “Joya Bravo” Morris is a new artist that breaks the stereotype of all beauty but no vocal skills. A first generation Jamaican-American raised in Queens, NY, Joya Bravo is not only vocally adept but also plays electric and drums. Her talents have had her performing in Brazil, Germany, London, and England. Her music has been featured on Oxygen TV network as well playing the role of Aretha Franklin in the Brazilian film “Tim Maia”. Rolling out spoke with Joya Bravo about her inspiration and career goals.
When did you know that being a musician was your calling?
Honestly, I’ve just about always known. I began dancing at age 3 and picked up the violin at age 9 and I just never doubted from there that music would be what I’d for the rest of my life.
Describe three other occupations you’ve held.
I’ve worked as a waitress at Hard Rock Cafe Atlanta and Arizona’s Steakhouse. Sold shoes at Foot Locker Underground and worked as a traveling artist in New York for a healing arts company.
What instruments do you play?
I sing, play violin and drums.
When you are on stage what do you want to convey about your style?
Initially, my major concern is making the trendy parts of African and Caribbean culture more accessible to Americans. There’s some sort of stigma around African/Caribbean culture that the rest of the world does not seem to subscribe to.
Name three musicians who have influenced your approach to being a musician?
Serj Tankian, Lauryn Hill, Thom Yorke.
What advice would you give anyone preparing to enter the music business about publishing and management?
Regarding publishing and management the most important thing is to figure out what it is you want to do and then simply do it. It seems like such a simple concept, but it is so easy for people to forget why they undertook something in the first place. I’ve experienced my fair share of trying to please people and fit in, which ultimately moves a person away from their true calling/wish.
What are the effects on society that you would like the results of listening to your music to be?
I saw it in Europe. A scene of diverse groups of people coming together and vibing over real, hard dancehall, classic reggae and afrobeat music laced with EDM elements. As an entire scene! I would love to help bring that same vibe to America. A culture of people connected at the root instead of the branch.
If you could go outside the USA to write and produce music what country would you choose and why?
Although I would love to explore the countries of Africa, based on experience I’d have to say Berlin, Germany. There’s art everywhere. It’s like an ADD playground for the adult artist. It is therapy. I was so thankful when my friend Fatimah graduated from art school there and invited me to visit. Within 2 days I fell in love with the place. I have gone back every spring since.
What producers are you looking forward to working with soon?
Major Lazer, Blaqk Sheep Music, Thom Yorke, Pharell, Kanye, Ceelo Green, Disclosure, Linda Perry.
If you could make a duet with someone who would it be and why?
Stromae. He is crazy, international and fearless. He has etched out his niche in world pop music. He plays many instruments, performs like he’s got no sense, and produces music as well. That’s the kind of vibe I want to double up on.
I appreciate my fans because…THEY KNOW GOOD MUSIC! Music is my calling and that’s why I’m so excited to be releasing my project “BRAVO” on February 27th scheduled with a release party at Art to Life Studio Complex in Atlanta, Georgia.
My method of studying music is… experience. A lot of time, I find that thrusting myself into situations gives me the next thing to focus on or study. I study what grabs me and directly speaks to me. I’m most inquisitive about what I am passionate about.
Name your favorite two books.
“The Way of the Peaceful Warrior” and “The Tao.”
Listen to her latest video Badda Dan Dem after the cut: