Zāna’s new single from her This is Autumn EP is a sugary yet sultry pop song with an RnB vibe about a fleeting encounter that leaves a bittersweet taste. “I was inspired to write ‘Sweet Tooth’ from three repurposed Starbucks Frappuccino bottles that were sitting on my desk,” she reveals from her NYC apartment. “One flavor was caramel, one mocha and the other vanilla. I then thought of the fact that my boyfriend says his skin color is ‘mocha caramel’, but I think it’s actually just ‘mocha’ – we often argue about that,” she laughs. “And the line ‘You taste as good as caramel, skin lookin’ like it’s mocha, I really shoulda told ya’ came to my head.”
“Sweet Tooth” is a classic meet-cute in this girl-meets-boy story. In this case, we’re left hanging while our lead girl, Zāna, indulges in candy and confesses her feelings about the night. “‘Sweet Tooth’ is the story of what I imagined a serendipitous experience of a new love interest would be like 20+ years ago. It wouldn’t happen today because so much of dating is through social media and the apps. We’re all so connected,” Zāna asserts.
Besides the narration of her own personal experiences, Zāna is often struck with storylines based on the lives and adventures of fictional characters. That’s what she does in “Sweet Tooth.” “They’re hitting it off, dancing, getting to know each other, and then their best friends get in the way. Forced to part ways, the lovebugs never exchange information and now our lead girl is left with the feeling of ‘what if?’,” she explains. “Because the visuals of the story behind ‘Sweet Tooth’ are so rich, it needed more than one person to act it out, which in these times of COVID is not ideal. So, I decided that a combination of vivid animation and live action would best narrate the events. My hope is that this will bring a fun and flavorful experience to everyone,” she goes on to say.
Zāna’s “Sweet Tooth” is being distributed by AWAL (part of Sony Music) and is available on Spotify. The song will debut on two of iHeart’s most popular radio stations WKTU 103.5FM and WLTW 106.7 LITE FM on Valentine’s Day.Zāna grew up in Oakland, CA. She knew from an early age that she would grow up to become a musician. “At two and half years old, I got caught by my mom throwing plates through the kitchen window because I liked the sound,” she recalls. “Soon after, my mother took me to my first mommy-and-me piano class where I banged on the keys so hard, we were asked not to return. At 7, I got my first drum kit and at 15 started guitar.”
After high school, Zāna attended Berklee College of Music where she further developed her artistry and “gypsy-pop” style: a sophisticated sound, where she showcases her vocals that are often likened to artists like Toni Braxton, Sade, and Amy Winehouse. Zāna’s music is feel-good, soulful, and influenced by her Lebanese and Serbo-Croatian roots. They allow her to showcase her hip-shaking and belly dancing moves.
In her songs, written with the help of her guitar, Zāna explores diverse topics from romance and body positivity to depression, anxiety, and insomnia. “I want young listeners to know they’re not alone in their hopes, fears and confusion,” she continues. “I have learned that there is strength in being vulnerable. So, I dare to bare those feelings every time I write, release, and perform my music.”
Zāna’s This is Autumn EP is the first of a four-part project. Following the This is Autumn EP will be three EPs: For Winter, Every Spring, and Feeling Summer. Together, they will complete a cohesive project intended to represent all emotions. In fact, when the seasons are removed from each EP title, the words left are “This is For Every Feeling”.
The This is Autumn EP is made up of six tracks, all love songs. “Because what do we do in autumn? We fall,” Zāna adds.
Zāna’s “Sweet Tooth” is being distributed by AWAL (part of Sony Music) and is available on Spotify. The music video is available Valentine’s Day on her YouTube channel @zanazora.