Langue disponible : anglaisBlessed with a huge personality and a belting, soulful voice, Yolanda Quartey spent years plugging away on the Bristol music scene and working as a backing singer for several major stars, before transforming herself into a country soul songwriter, heading to Nashville and convincing Black Keys frontman Dan Auerbach to produce her debut solo album 'Walk Through Fire' in 2019.
Raised by a strict single mum who came to Britain from Barbados in the 1970s and worked as a psychiatric nurse, the family always struggled for money, but Yolanda set her heart on becoming a singer at the age of four after hearing the Jackson 5's 'Rockin' Robin', and by the age of 14 was performing in small bars and jazz clubs with older friends. She moved to London at 19 to further pursue music with DJ collective Bugz in the Attic, but returned to her home town of Bristol after a couple of years and started country-rock group Phantom Limb in 2005 while also working as a session singer. Over eight years the band released three albums and opened for Dr John, Courtney Pine and Solomon Burke on tour, while Yolanda's career grew when she co-wrote pop star Will Young's single 'Hopes & Fears'. Overcoming voice problems and countless other struggles, she also worked as a backing vocalist for Katy Perry, Chase & Status and Kris Drever and later joined Massive Attack as their touring singer, performing with the trip hop legends at Glastonbury Festival in 2008.
Influenced by the gospel glory of Mavis Staples, the open-hearted country songwriting of Dolly Parton, the melodic, Americana rock of The Byrds and Crosby, Stills and Nash and the soulful sound of Stax Records and Otis Redding, she properly launched her solo career in 2016 with EP 'Orphan Offering' under the name Yola Carter, and made a huge impression when she appeared at the AmericanaFest in Nashville that year. She felt she'd finally found her musical home in Tennessee, and Dan Auerbach soon spotted her talents at a showcase and invited her to record for his label Easy Eye Sound at his studio. She also honed her sound by working with acclaimed country musicians such as Vince Gill, Ronnie McCoury and Molly Tuttle, before debut album 'Walk Through the Fire' came out in 2019 under the name Yola, full of warm, vintage, Southern soul grooves with years of struggle poured into her raw songwriting.
© Artist biography compiled by BDS/West 10. All rights reserved
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