The Next Big Thing (No.43) : Yuna

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When it comes to independent musicians in South East Asia region, we can only recognize Indonesian musicians (such as White Shoes and the Couples Company or Sore) who make it big on the international map. Countries like Malaysia hasn’t really spoken much about this scene, but there’s one girl who finally appeared and she hit the jackpot. She is Yuna.

Yuna Zarai or famously known as Yuna began writing her songs at the age of 14. The reality is she didn’t mean to perform anything until she took her guitar and tried to play with it. At the age of 19, when she was studying in Law school, she started performing her music and it began attracting people to know more about her music. Starting in 2006, she’s been using MySpace to promote her music and when her song ‘Deeper Conversation’got a major airplay on the local radio, she decided to put her life for music. And she really did. After receiving numerous recognition and awards in Malaysia, a New York-based indie label FADER, signed Yuna as one of their new artists.

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When Yuna is on the board of FADER, the label promoted her music here and there. And as the word went in and out, Pharell Williams listened to her EP, ‘Decorate’, and he fell in love with some of her tracks. “Pharrell was one of the producers who wanted to work with me so I was really lucky to be one of those people who got to work with him. I think he heard some songs from my EP and he loved it. We worked on a couple of tracks.” Said Yuna to Complex.com on her story of meeting Pharell. With a help of Pharell, Yuna’s music begin to expand into a new level, not only being a typical acoustic girl, she added a hip/hop and black music influences. Her latest album, Nocturnal, also makes it big time to her career. The album speaks more about the personal stories and has a simplicity mixed with her soft-angelic vocals. Even David Foster ( the head of creative operations of Verve Music Group, the label that Yuna recently signed with) tweeted “I’m really excited about the next hot artist to join Verve Music. Stay tuned and keep an eye out for Yuna in 2013

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Yuna has made it for Billboard, she has set a really high bar for her music. With an outstanding comments from the Grammy scorers like Pharell Williams and David Foster, Yuna is building her way to the stardom. Don’t need to dress up in a quirky way or do a little stunt in the public scene, Yuna is beautifully sitting on her throne and ready to echo her music.