January 22, 2020

Who’s Next Spotlight: Naya Shea

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Who’s Next Spotlight: Naya Shea

Stage Name: Naya Shea

Age: 21

Birthplace: Hoboken, NJ


Describe your sound: 

R&B/Neo-Soul. That’s what I grew up listening to. So that’s what I went into singing.

Who are the Top 5 artists (dead or alive) that inspires you as an artist?

I definitely love Musiq Soulchild. As of right now I love Teyana Taylor, Daniel Caesar, Queen Naija, Summer Walker, and a lot of other r&b singers coming out right now.

How did you know this was something you wanted to do?

It might sound cliché, but this is the best thing I know how to do. Especially when I was picking what I wanted to do for the rest of my life, like applying to college I wasn’t as excited. But me singing, and learning how to write, that makes me more excited, more passionate. So I thought, if that makes me passionate, why wouldn’t I pursue that for the rest of my life instead of being in a job I don’t like.

What is the name of the first track you ever recorded?

First track I ever recorded was named “Cliché. The song was actually really random. I was really young, and I was talking about heartbreak, and at the time I never really experienced heartbreak. I think I just learned from watching tv, or being really observant, just taking those things into a song. That’s how I learned I can write, and I just started using my experiences, other peoples experiences, conversations, and observations, and that’s how I’ve been able to write ever since.

What’s the craziest thing you ever done? 

The craziest thing I’ve done is pursue music in general, because I’m so by the book. To take a big risk, and do music, and put myself out there, that’s something crazy for me, because I always have to make sure there’s a plan. Music is a hard business to get into, and there’s no guarentee you’re ever going to make it.

What’s your favorite food? 

Rice. Just rice. White rice and corn. I’ve eaten white rice alone, without anything, and people ask me if I’m going to add anything to it, and I answer ‘nah it’s ok.’ Rice & Corn with some Frank’s hot or that pink sauce…. (sighs).

Tell us about your first performance. 

It was horrible. I was naturally shy, and singing in front of everybody in general, it took me a while to sing in front of people. No one knew I could sing. Then I remember asking my mom to take me to singing lessons, and that’s when I had to break out of my bubble, because I wasn’t going to have her paying for singing lessons if I’m not going to do anything with it. So then after that she made me get in front of people during my first performance at an open mic setting. I sang in front of people, and I was very nervous, and shy. It was like that for a couple of years, but once I started taking it more seriously, and performing more, I started engaging more, and work on my performance.

I think the performance was in downtown Jersey City, at a bar/restaurant. They had a tiny little stage. It was like my freshman year of high school.

What Is The Most Romantic Thing Someone Has Done To Get Your Attention

This Christmas, [my boyfriend] gave me a nice little surprise. He had a huge box, and he shredded so much paper. It was kind of like a scavenger hunt, and he put a whole bunch of gifts. He said it took him hours. He put a bunch of gifts inside, and I had to look for them, and open them. Everybody was looking at me like ‘oh my god, what did you get?’ It made me feel special. That was really nice, and it took a lot of time and heart into that, so I appreciate the effort.

What Made You Submit Your Music To Who’s Next? 

It was another good opportunity. Just starting out music, I was looking for anything to promote my music. I remember being told about it, and I was like I might as well go for it. What’s the worse that can happen? I forgot a little bit about [my submission] then I got the phone call that I won. I just created an EP, I wanted to get some feedback to see if I was good enough, and… I guess I am?

Let us know why YOU are Next. 

I’m just another girl to represent what if means to feel love.Because I like to write about love, and things like that. I am very relatable, and very regular. I’m very human, I don’t want to be fake. I just want to sing my heart out, and I want people to hear that. My authentic self will get people to listen to that, relate to me, and rock to my music. I feel I can next.

Get to know more about Naya Shea below!

Instagram | Twitter | Soundcloud | YouTube

Listen to her latest EP, Love is the Word below.

Do you feel like you’re next? Get noticed! Visit Hot97.com/WhosNext and find out how you can be next on the Hot 97 leaderboard.

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