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WPGM Commentary: Love Itoya On The Making Of Her Debut EP ‘Introduction’

My name is Love Itoya, I’m a 24 year old Greek Nigerian artist, singer and songwriter. I was born in Thessaloniki, Greece but my parents are from Nigeria, both from Edo state, however my mum is from Benin and my dad from Esan (Uromi).

My debut EP Introduction was mostly written by me and some other songs were written in collaboration with my brother, who is also a singer/songwriter, as well as my parents.

The process to create Introduction started In 2018, in which I was in another phase of my life where I needed to just pour my heart out, express my fears and needs, and try to figure out who I was at that time. That’s when “Ups & Downs”, “Consideration”, “Real Love” and “Party” were created.

In 2019, I wrote “Reminiscing You”, and then in 2020, “Pepper Dem” was created – that was when I was more sure of what I wanted as an artist.

I’m a multi-genre artist inspired by a lot of different types of music and one of my strongest talents are my melodies. Creating this EP, I had to be sure that firstly, my melodies would be something that will be catchy and interesting, secondly my songwriting, I wanted it to be raw and my own true story.

I like mixing different kind of genres, and when it comes to my Nigerian roots, people haven’t seen me singing more afropop songs, neither have they heard me do something more R&B or pop/rock. They knew me more as soul/funk singer, which I love but I love to experiment with more genres too. That’s something I wanted to showcase in my EP and for people to get familiar with my sound.

Each song has it’s own story and place, and every time I listen to it, I remember every occasion of the story, which makes it more emotional for me but as time goes by, it’s a healing and empowering process, which I had to go through to overcome a lot of things.

Introduction is filled with representation and different emotions, and it has a conclusion advice at the end of each story.

In October 2020, I finally made the decision to travel to Paris (France) with my brother to record my EP. We were searching for suitable producers that could bring my vision to life, and luckily we found the French producers Shawondasee.

The studio time was a whole new journey for me, from recording to my brother and I vocal producing to Shawondasee and I working on the production – it was something so exciting, but at the same time nerve-racking to see how it was gonna sound at the end.

I already had my melodies and sound ideas in the picture but we had to find the right instrumentation especially when it comes to guitars, horns, brass sections and percussion, which are more of my Nigerian influences.

During the last days of recording, I had a hoarse voice and I had to sing a high key song with vibratos and whistle notes etc. I was like literally crying because I thought I couldn’t get it out, but after a lot of hot cups of tea, thank God, I made it.

My producers really gave me the opportunity and the freedom to tap into every possibilities in terms of the production of my songs and they came up with different ideas, sound effects that would make my songs ten times better. They understood exactly what my direction was for this EP and gave me the rightful advice about how to go with it.

I’m more than ready for the world to hear my sound and hopefully inspire a lot of people and make a difference as a female Greek Nigerian Artist.

Listen to my Introduction EP below and stream it everywhere else here.

Words by Love Itoya // Follow him on Twitter + Instagram

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