With the COVID pandemic keeping us static, have you been listening to your old favorite music? Or trying to find something new? If so, superproducers Swizz Beatz and Timbaland have got you covered. In late March, the duo created the Verzuz series, an Instagram LIVE battle of hits between two established artists (or groups) meant to remind and educate people about some of the greatest hip-hop and R&B artists and, in the short time since its inception, Verzuz has drawn hundreds of thousands of fans. 

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I was a senior in high school when I discovered the sultry, enchanting and commanding voice of a singer from London. The songwriter, bass, guitar and piano player still holds my attention eight years later. Lianne La Havas is one of the most refreshing 21st century musicians I have encountered, her style of music is jazzy, spunky, and fervent.

Havas' father is Greek and her mother is Jamaican, her background, life experiences, and skills, heavily influence her music. At a young age, she began singing backup for Paloma Faith, a popular English singer-songwriter and actress, while her father, a jazz musician, taught her to play piano.

Watching guitar lessons on YouTube got the adept artist to learn the guitar on her own when she was eighteen. Since she was raised by her grandparents, the eccentric musician named her guitar “Miss Connie,” after her grandmother. Havas believes in being true to herself, and not conforming to the pressures of society. She speaks about the importance of individuality rather than success in an interview with Coupe De Main:

“True success is getting closer or getting to that pure expression in your music and all of it, how you dress, or how your videos look, or your artwork. All of that is you, so for me if I could do that I would feel successful. But also to be remembered for the right reasons, in my opinion the right reason would be because I was a nice singer and I wrote nice songs, I would like to be remembered by that.”

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