OY aka Joy Frempong, a versatile half Ghanaian and half Swiss multi versed vocalist, is definitely one of a rare breed –at home in the left-of-center sound but gifted with a penchant for writing sticky, unforgettable melodies.
Her vibrant, playful debut inspired by childhood stories, First Box Then Walk (2010), was celebrated by critics and fans internationally for its unique, organic blend of electronic music, improv vocals, and colorful storytelling.
The LP effortlessly sold out the first pressing, and paved the way for bookings at prestigious events such as Sonar, Montreux Jazz, SXSW and Transmusicales. The ever-increasing demand for her one-woman live spectacle propelled OY into an intercontinental touring frenzy, which lasted for 2 years solid.
It should come as no surprise then, that the sample base for the follow up release was recorded on the road. It consists of an accrued catalog of field recordings from a series of trips to Mali, Burkina Faso, Ghana, and source material collected during a residency in South Africa.
“Market Place” is the first song from OY's upcoming record Kokokyinaka to break the silence in the spring of 2013.
From the sound of this single gem it's safe to say that we can expect something very warm, vivacious, chatty, thoroughly seasoned compositionally, and with a lot more sass on the swing. Like with the rest of the new batch, the lyrics on “Market Place” were inspired by the griot traditions of Africa, local proverbs, as well as snatches of recorded conversations.
During the recording sessions OY was joined by talented drummer and producer Lleluja-Ha, who added beautiful layers of textural grooves throughout and applied his sharp ear and production skills to fleshing out the arrangements to create full, well-balanced song structures. Distinctly OY, just a tad more mature - the playfulness remained intact, but it certainly sounds like she's not a kid anymore.