Samara Joy is stepping into the next phase of her rapidly rising career as a jazz star as she announces her forthcoming album Linger Awhile, set for release on September 16 as the 22-year-old vocalist’s Verve Records debut.
“I am deeply honored to be a part of a roster that has included so many of my greatest vocal inspirations: Sarah, Billie, Ella, and Betty to name a few,” Samara shared in a statement about her Verve Records debut. “Being a part of this lineage is humbling, and I will continue to use all of the inspiration gleaned from them to pursue my own unique journey as a singer and an artist.”
The unveiling of Linger Awhile arrives alongside the project’s lead single, a warm rendition of the classic “Can’t Get Out Of This Mood,” notably performed in the past by Nina Simone and Frank Sinatra.
Joy first teased the classic cover on TikTok, where she boasts a loyal following of over 137,000 users and has amassed over 1.3 million likes. Her comment sections are consistently flooded with notes of praise and excitement, it would be an understatement to say the singer’s forthcoming release is highly-anticipated. While sharing her work online, Joy’s fanbase has grown to include the likes of Hollywood giants Regina King and LaKeith Stanfield.
Linger Awhile aims to continue the young performer’s dominance. Across the album, Joy will lend the timeless and soulful qualities of her idiosyncratic voice to reinvent classic jazz recordings including George Gershwin’s “Someone To Watch Over Me,” Thelonious Monk’s “Round Midnight,” and Fat Navarro’s “Nostalgia (The Day I Knew).”
But Joy doesn’t only have her sights set on reimagining the classics in the traditional sense of the genre. When the Bronx-native stepped into New York City’s Sear Sound to record the record – with appearances from guitarist Pasquale Grasso, pianist Ben Paterson, bassist David Wong, and drummer Kenny Washington – she also brought along with her original lyrics to pave her own lane. Throughout the album, Joy will navigate between the new and the familiar, pairing her original songwriting with melodies of classic instrumental solos.
“There’s such an incredible and rich history of Black female singers. I see so much of myself in them and see the way they paved the way so I can do what I’m doing,” Joy told Andscape in a recent interview. “And then the way that they sing and the songs they sing, I can relate to and hopefully carry it and pass it down so that nobody forgets those Black female singers who have such an impact and influence on music as a whole.”
In support of Linger Awhile, Joy will perform a number of live performances featuring club dates, festivals, and cultural institutions, plus highly-anticipated NYC hometown shows at The Blue Note. Complete dates and ticket information can be found on the official Samara Joy website.