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Daily Inspiration: Meet Nyanté McKenzie

Today we’d like to introduce you to Nyanté McKenzie.

Hi Nyanté, so excited to have you with us today. What can you tell us about your story?
I’ve always been singing since I can remember. My earliest memory of music is hearing Alicia Keys’ ‘Fallin’ and being taken by how effortless her runs were and how well orchestrated that song was. I remember my 4-year-old self saying, “I can do that!”. From then on, you couldn’t tell me anything. I would sing up and down the house for the next 17 years. Throughout that time, I have worked on my craft and fine-tuned my vocal abilities. However, it wasn’t until 2020 that I dived headfirst into making my music. The catalyst that we all face one way or another is heartbreak. When I experienced that, I was looking for any relief, sometimes in the wrong places. Around that time, my love for music and creativity had taken a backseat in my life. But then I stumbled upon Jhene Aiko’s album ‘Chilombo,’ and whenever I would listen to that project, it felt like it was grabbing me by the hand and ushering me through that time. I would go as far as to say that it played a part in my healing. That’s when I decided that I wanted to do for people, what that project did for me, and the only way to do that was to be authentic and vulnerable about my own experience. And so my first project, ‘Bare With Me,’ was born in November 2020. I had no idea what that project would mean and what it would do for me. I had newfound freedom in being able to construct my own body of work; it was like I had unlocked a superpower. Through creating that project, I discovered I had a songwriting gift. I was hooked on creating different worlds with just my words. Today, my gift has brought me opportunities and spaces I have only dreamed of.

Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall, and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
In the beginning, it was smooth! I had entered the music world, eyes wide with many things on my chest and something specific to say, so it seemed my creative well was always full. Over time, I found myself uninspired by the things around me and the sounds I was consuming. Everything started to sound the same outside my art, which affected my art. It hurt when I hit an artistic plateau for the first time in two years. I started to doubt myself and question if I was meant to do this. What kind of re-centered me was remembering my purpose and what made me start in the first place. Putting my pen to paper pulled me out of a hole, so why not trust it to do that time and time again?

Thanks – so what else should our readers know about your work and what you’re currently focused on?
I am an artist, and I use my music to provide solace and energy for others. I specialize in singing, songwriting, and creative directing. I would say that I’m known for creating music that resonates with a moment that a lot of people experience. Whether that be a good time or a bad time, I know they can identify those life moments with my songs. I’m proud of my constant search for growth within myself. I’m always growing. Because of that, it always leads to an incline within my music. It’s almost like my audience is growing up with me. My authenticity and boldness in stepping into it set me apart from others. I’m Nyanté, only one of me, and I revel in that.

Where do you see things going in the next 5-10 years?
I need to see my hard work materialize, and there are many ways that I want to see it, one of them being a Grammy. Whether as a writing credit or for my work as an artist. I see myself showing exponential growth within my career in the next 5-10 years. I see myself collaborating with those that I respect in the industry. Witnessing the growth of my peers is important to me, as well. There’s an untapped well of talent in Baltimore. There are artists here with star potential that the world should see.

Contact Info:

Image Credits
Savannah Kent Calik Jalil Allen Stewart

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