This time around on SheBeat Meets, Brum Radio’s favourite singer-songwriter showcase, is Toni Sansara.
Hailing from Walsall, Toni has been finding her way around the busy Midlands’ music scene for just over 3 years, though she first recalls writing songs just aged 12. Towards the end of 2018, Toni worked with a local producer, Ray Parkes, on her first EP release, Tornado, including single Real Friends which got national radio play by DJ Bobby Friction on BBC Asian Network and Huw Stephens for BBC Radio 1 Introducing in 2019.
Toni grew up in a music-loving household. “At family parties the turntable would come out,” she remembers fondly, “And there would be all this music… the soul and Motown stuff my dad loved, one uncle loved indie rock and the other one loved the big chart stars like Madonna and Prince, so I definitely soaked up all those influences.” Toni loves music that bares the soul of the writer and performer.
Early memories of live music stayed with Toni, even though it was only bubblegum pop, she remembers the energy in the room, everyone together, feeling the love for the music and the artist. Toni says her own first performance was singing in a school talent show, an Alicia Keys cover. She fell in love with performing and has since made her way from that first gig to performing at festivals and local venues.
Toni chose Lauryn Hill ‘Doo Wop (That Thing)’ as her inspiration track. Toni admires Lauren’s unique style and respects the perseverance she likely required to be a success in music, presenting a new kind of offer from a black women in popular hip hop.
Toni performed ‘You Don’t Own Me’, ‘Real Friends’, and ‘Tornado’ live on the show and you can hear her latest release, Monsters, in all the digital music streaming places.