Stephanie McKay. Remember the name.
In honor of Black Music Month, we’re highlighting amazing artists like Soul singer/songwriter, educator, and arts advocate Stephanie McKay whose artistic practice lies at the intersection of art, community, education and social justice.
Over the course of her 20-year career, she’s released four albums of original music, toured internationally as a solo artist/bandleader/performer, and worked with Anthony Hamilton, DJ Spinna, Toshi Reagon, Roy Hargrove, Jacques Schwarz-Bart, MOS Def, Talib Kweli, Amp Fiddlerand tricky.
Earlier this year, she collaborated with her 12-year-old son on “Phenomenon” inspired by the fear of raising a young Black boy in a world where they are disproportionately targeted by police.
The soul-nourishing track is featured on the global artist compilation ‘Black Lives: From Generation to Generation’ which taps into the genealogy of Black music and its roots in West African, South African, and Afro-Caribbean rhythms through 25 international artists and over 60 musicians.
Infused with the connective power of the African diaspora, the compilation showcases Hip-Hop, Jazz, Funk, Rock, Fusion, Rap, Jungle, Nu-Jazz, Soul, Blues, Caribbean Jazz, Opera, Classical music, and poetry.
Born in New York City, Stephanie draws inspiration from relationships, history and life experiences of the people in her community. Through observation, interviews and improvisation she composes and interprets stories through music, words, and movement.
As an educator, Stephanie is passionate about using integrated arts to promote self-agency, critical thinking, and creative self-expression.
In Massachusetts, she’s worked with afterschool youth art organizations like Zumix, Raw Art Works, and Citizen Schools where she co-creates with youth while aspiring to create a culturally reflexive curriculum through which she can share her passion for arts education with others.
Stream Stephanie McKay’s music here, and read more about her journey here.