Dutch-Ghanaian multi-instrumentalist Nana Adjoa’s debut album ‘Big Dreaming Ants’, is out today. This week Nana dropped the powerful visual for her lead single, ‘National Song’ which looks looks at cultural identity and neo-nationalism.
Nana Adjoa explains, “Every country has a national song. In the Netherlands, ours is translated from old Dutch. Everybody sings along but they don’t know what it means.” She elaborates, “It made me question the tradition, and why we feel the need to belong to a nation when borders aren’t as clear as they used to be.”
The song is also about searching for one’s own identity – on a personal, cultural and global level. On ‘Throw Stones’, the artist sings about “calming myself down in difficult times. This era of ‘online life’ invites the uglier sides of ourselves to exist outside of just our thoughts. It’s about regrouping and reflecting. You don’t always have to be ‘on’, you are allowed to make time for yourself”.
Written and recorded in her own studio, the album sees Nana handling the majority of the instrumentation herself, using a wide palette of instruments. A process that helped her to develop a multi-layered sound, rich in tonal textures, which is as intimate as expansive.
Talking about the storyline behind the album Nana explains, “Big dreaming, little ants, it’s just who we are. Zooming in on myself and my personal search for identity and then zooming out to see yourself as a very small piece in a bigger part, that as a whole is also on that same search. Themes like heritage, nationalism, internal conflict, change, originality and insecurity come along in that search”.
You can purchase the album on Bandcamp
Check out the video to National Song below, and let us know what you think: