Dancer; Identity: 801 Creative Women, Living Color; Musician; Singer; Writer
The singer of R&B and soul known as Yolanda Arrey has released her latest LP record, “The Bayou.” It consists of 15 tracks for an approximate total listening time of one hour. It has been proudly published as an independent release without the direction of the corporate music industry. Built on grooves, blues, beats, and the clarion singing of this contemporary chanteuse from Cameroon, “The Bayou” proves Yolanda Arrey to be one of today’s most evocative singers.
Right away “The Bayou” evidences whose singing Yolanda Arrey appreciates most. She cites as her main inspirations Whitney Houston, Billie Holiday, and the Temptations. Yet her style sets her apart from these legends, letting her retain qualities and characteristics all her own.
Arrey’s sonic individuality begins at the writing stage. She clearly writes songs with a mind to create new patterns of flow and phrasing while at the same time paying strict attention to the content of her lyrics. This latter artistic principle alone puts Arrey in a select percentage of singer-songwriters, but her natural tones also single her out as a special performer in today’s burgeoning independent music scene.
“My album is about the inspiration to press on, to love, to grow and to be thankful,” writes Arrey. “It’s a collective expression of all that we feel when we are in love, both good and bad, joyful and sad. It’s an expression of strength in difficult times and the motivation to press forward in the face of unwavering challenges. Most importantly, it’s about the freedom to express how we feel at any given time without judgment.”
Arrey began her singing career at the age of seven as a songwriter. By nine she had joined several a-cappella groups in Saker Baptist College where she later attended high school in Cameroon and was lead singer-songwriter for the popular dance group, “GST.” Before relocating to the United States at 19, she would sing in many more. She participated in many bands in college, and memorized most of her school studies by making music out of her classroom lecture notes.
Writes Arrey, “I have written over 150 songs for others and for myself. It’s a good balance with my nerdy side, and it’s the one thing that keeps me going no matter what else is happening in my life. I am truly grateful for its amazing power.”
Yolanda Arrey has collaborated with pop musician Prince of Cats and appears as lead vocalist in his hit 2013 video, “When You Loved Me.” More recently she appeared on her brother Eliel Arrey’s album, “The Essentials,” singing “Your Highness.” Her new record’s title track, “The Bayou,” is co-written by the world-renowned composer, Lawrence Nachsin.
“The Bayou” by Yolanda Arrey is available online worldwide at over 700 digital music stores now.