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Recently nominated for the Charlotte Music Awards Best Singer-Songwriter of 2013, this sultry singer is quickly becoming a household name. Growing up in New Orleans, Anitra Jay was surrounded by the sounds of jazz, blues, and R&B. Gospel was also influential in her life and when she was a young girl she joined the church choir. “When everyone swayed from side to side, I began to move to my own tune and bumped into everyone around me, including my Mom,” she says. Needless to say, she learned how to keep a rhythm.
In high school she had taught herself to play the piano, but it wasn’t until after college when she found her true calling. A dark blue guitar caught her eye while in a music store one day, so she bought it on a whim and taught herself to play. She’s been singing and writing songs ever since.
Inspired by a range of artists from Michael Jackson, Bill Withers, and Donnie Hathaway to India.Arie, Jill Scott, and Laura Izibor, her music is a sweet down-to-earth blend of soul and poetry with modern sensibilities. She effortlessly combines soul-catching melodies with tales of real life experiences that leave the listener inspired and in a deeper state of mind.
As an R&B/Soul singer-songwriter in Charlotte, North Carolina, Anitra takes full advantage of the freedom of being an independent artist, writing every song from the soul and for the soul. Her self-discipline, sacrifice, and pure will to press on have paid off as she released her debut album, Keep The Faith. Completely self-penned and self-produced, this record was designed to empower others. “It’s a reminder that when life knocks you down your job is to get back up and start again because it’s not just about you,” she explains. “Other people are depending on you to carry out your purpose on this earth.”
In her sophomore album, Genesis, released in the Fall of 2012, Anitra Jay explores the radical rejuvenation of starting over with songs such as "An Angel," and "On a Dime and a Dream." This album combines sultry vocals with harmonic sounds of the guitar that will captivate its listeners and bring them on a journey of new beginnings.
She is currently touring the east coast while working on her third album, a project all about the beauty of natural hair.
She plans to continue to write and perform and dreams of someday touring the world. Her hope is that everyone who hears her music will be inspired to actively live out their true purpose in life by getting closer to God, our creator. (To learn more about Anitra Jay's mission click here.)
Anitra Jay is a founding member of the Charlotte Singer/Songwriters & Poets Circle!