Andra Day’s new song is perfect for her musical comeback

Everyone has their certain escape.

For some, it may be a good book—one that they have read hundreds of times. For others, it may be sitting down and watching a timeless movie. For me, it is music.

Ever since I was a child, I have been consumed with music. Once I heard a song on the radio, it played a countless number of times in my head until I found a new tune to replace it with. 

Although, very few times have I been completely enraptured by a certain song or artist. This quickly changed when ten-year-old me heard the song, “Rise Up” by Andra Day. I was absolutely obsessed with this song—I vividly remember my mom having to tell me to turn the song off because she could not listen to it anymore.

After I ever so slowly left that phase of my life, I kind of just forgot about Day and her endless talent as a singer and songwriter. That was until I heard her new song on the radio.

Wozah, wozah/Gah doong beh gee leh/Sondel meh li wam

— Andra Day

Her newest single “Phone Dies” is her first song written in a long while that hasn’t been for a movie. Recently, she starred as Billie Holiday in the movie, The United States vs. Billie Holiday in which she recorded many of Holiday’s songs. While it was still formed from her astonishing voice, it doesn’t include the personality that stems from an original song.

While I have not listened to her music since “Rise Up,” Day has changed immensely in her style of music, where she went from singing with an ambient and easy-going tone, she has switched to much more soulful and groovy singing.

The song begins with what sounds like an ethnic chant that was made musically sounding, it then switches into her actually singing.

While there is the main chorus, she continues to sing the chants in the post-chorus. Singing, “Wozah, wozah/Gah doong beh gee leh/Sondel meh li wam,” she adds her own special touch to the song, and I am totally here for it.

I feel as though many songwriters don’t make their music incredibly personal, or if they do, the listeners have to do some digging to find out what they truly mean when they are singing the lyrics. With Day, she truly personalized this song with these chants; while I do not know what it is she is singing, I can assume she put it in her song for a specific reason that holds close to her.

Throughout the song, she keeps the soulful tone, but also adds fun instruments to the background, making it fit into the category of rhythm and blues. I was truly not expecting her song to sound like this at all, but I am not complaining. I absolutely love her take on this song and think it is extremely different from most music being released right now.

I can assure that whenever I am feeling a different style of music, “Phone Dies” and hopefully an entire album will be where I go to satisfy that want.