German born / Ghanaian raised Jennifer Yaa Akoto Kieck or Y’Akoto’s new album ‘Moody Blues’ takes an alternative approach to her acclaimed previous album ‘Baby Blues’. With ‘Moody Blues’, Y’akoto writes from the heart and reveals a lot of her vulnerabilities through her music.
Of the new album, she states, “Through real confrontation with life and people, I feel like I’ve come a little closer to myself. I could have chosen to be mentally isolated from everyone and everything, or I could have just leaned into life and rely or trust the people around me. I don’t want to be totally independent, I want to trust and love even if that makes me more vulnerable. Being more vulnerable makes me stronger.”
She also hopes that the messages in her songs will help to create an impact and bring specific world problems to the forefront.
In the song “Mother And Son”, Y’akoto concentrates in a very emotional way on the fact that many sons everywhere in the world have to grow up without their fathers – because they have to earn a living, look for work or go to war. “Off The Boat” on the other hand can be seen as an acoustic metaphor for the every day hustle in everyone’s life. And “Down To The River”, despite its arrangement in an attractive sound conveying elegy and hope, deals with the serious contemplation of the intention of commiting suicide. “Life and its paradox inspires me. I try to concentrate on the contrasts. In the western world most people can live OK. Elsewhere people just struggle for daily bread. We all live in the middle of contrasts. I guess I transform that collective awareness into music. I want to focus on what happens around us and what genuinely moves me.”
Throughout her youth, Y’akoto spent most of time in Ghana, Cameroon, Togo and Chad. 11The Hamburg-based singer performed alongside Erykah Badu, Nneka and Asa
The 17-track ‘Moody Blues’ album is available to purchase on iTunes.
Check out the video for ‘Perfect Timing’ filmed in Ghana below: