Indie Artist Spotlight: SOLA

The Houston, TX native is currently a student at New York University studying Music Business. She is a key member of NYU’s Vocaholics and was featured on NYU’s Women in Music.

Now she is ready to make her mark on the music industry with her new single, In This World, a beautiful song addressing the struggles of Black Americans living in a world where it is “a risk to exist.”

sola in this world

MMS: What inspired this song?

SOLA: In This World is inspired by race relations in America and the Black Lives Matter Movement.

I wrote the song over the summer in quarantine and I wasn’t sure if I should release it. As I kept seeing everything in America get progressively worse, I knew I needed to say something about it.

This song is so important and I hope others can realize what I’m trying to say and learn something from my music.

Mocha Man Style: What does the name SOLA mean?

SOLA: Whenever I was going through stage names my last name was too long and my first name was too basic so we looked at my middle name, Bisola which in Yoruba, a Nigerian language, literally translates as born into wealth my God.

SOLA, for me, means new beginnings, self-discovery, and self-love. In the past few years, I’ve been learning more about myself and how I want to be perceived in the world.

So SOLA means newfound wealth within me.

MMS: What first inspired your love of music and what inspires you now?

SOLA: Award shows like the Grammys and AMAs inspired me a ton because of the ways the artists performed.

Music videos on MTV were also really big for me. I distinctly remember watching early 2000s music videos before the bus came for school every morning.

{Now} my friends, family, favorite artists, and New York City inspire me. I know it’s so cheesy, but this city is so amazing. One of my favorite things to do is take a walk around the city and see so many untold stories unfold before your very eyes. It’s so inspiring to see.

MMS: Which musicians do you admire?

SOLA: I admire Megan Thee Stallion because of the confidence that she brings to the table.

Female rappers are always looked down on, and I think it’s so important for black girls to see a successful female rapper who is so confident and beautiful.

Phoebe Bridgers is another one of my favorites because her music is so deep and emotional. I feel like people are intrigued by her music because even though it’s sad, it is portrayed in this lighthearted manner. I just love that you’re hearing her whole life through her music.

I also love Harry Styles just because I think what he’s doing as a male artist is so important. He is breaking down so many barriers with his fashion, music, and makeup.

sola in this world

MMS: Who would you most like to collaborate with?

SOLA: In a dream world Beyonce, period. In a slightly more realistic world, it would be Lizzy McAlpine. I discovered her through Tik Tok in August and I haven’t stopped following her since. She’s an incredible songwriter and has such a soothing voice.

MMS: How long have you been writing music?

SOLA: I’ve been writing music since Elementary School, probably around 1st grade.

I’ve always loved writing poems and writing in general ever since I was little. I used to write poems and then I would start to sing my lyrics to a melody of an existing song.

It took me a while to realize I couldn’t do that [laughs] and then I started writing my own melodies.

MMS: Can you describe the first time you wrote a song?

SOLA: In Elementary School, I had this private diary that I would keep under my pillow and it had a lock on it, it was probably the most secure you could get as a child.

I distinctly remember writing my first song about snacks in that diary and hiding it under my pillow.

I can’t remember the lyrics but I remember it was so important to me and meant so much to me that I had it completely to myself.

It was my first real possession.

MMS: What does your creative process look like?

SOLA: The lyrics always come to me first. I’ll think of some lyrics at the moment and quickly open my notes app so I don’t forget it.

After I have the lyrics, I piece together the melody and after I have it I work out the piano chords.

Sometimes the melody and lyrics come together and it’s amazing, but not usually.

MMS: What is your favorite part about the creative process?

SOLA: My favorite part is when I get a sudden burst of energy where the melody and lyrics come all together.

I know it happens with other songwriters where after not being able to write for a long time and feeling stuck you get this burst of energy and it’s everything you’ve been waiting for. You feel like you’re on top of the world.

That feeling makes it so worth it every time.

MMS: What made you decide to create your own music?

SOLA: I started to seriously create my own music in middle school. It was then that the songs I was writing weren’t just for fun and I saw that music could be a career.

In 5th or 6th grade, I started doing community theater outside of school and performing regularly.

I fell in love with performing. I quickly realized I could perform my own music too one day.

I began realizing all the artists I liked had something to say and I wanted to do the same with my music.

sola in this world

MMS: What are your musical goals?

SOLA: Since In This World is my debut single, my biggest goal, for now, is for one person to hear this song and be inspired.

If I can touch one person with this song, I would be content. I want to make people feel the way I feel when I listen to my favorite artists.

MMS: What message do you want people to take away from your music?

SOLA: I would say the biggest message is to speak your truth however you want to.

All my life I’ve been told how I express myself or how I feel is wrong, but that’s not true.

If you feel a certain way and want to express it then there is no way that it is wrong. How you feel, how you express it, and your opinions are valid.

MMS: What is next for you?

SOLA: Currently, I’m working on writing my EP. I’m considering releasing a song from it this summer depending on this single and how it is received, but something is definitely in the works. 

SOLA’s single In This World is now available on all streaming platforms.

Follow @itssolaofficial on all social media platforms to keep up with new releases.

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