Inspired by Langston Hughes, Jazz Artist Candice Hoyes Talks New Music

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To connect more deeply with the energy of Hughes’s poetry, Candace Hoyes spent time in his historic brownstone in Harlem.

By Stacy M. Brown, NNPA Newswire Senior National Correspondent

NuSoul and Jazz artist Candice Hoyes has brought what her record label calls an otherworldly vocalism to her new single “Waiting for the World (Tired).”

Inspired by the Harlem Renaissance poet Langston Hughes, the single can be streamed here.

In an interview with the National Newspaper Publishers Association’s (NNPA) “Let It Be Known” breaking news program, Hoyes explained why Hughes serves as one of her inspirations.

“Langston Hughes is a huge part of the inspiration for new single [because] the central message comes transmitted through Langston Hughes for me,” Hoyes stated during the interview, which can be viewed here.

“I’m a music artist, but I grew up while being exposed to music and playing piano reading a lot,” she remarked.

“I’m fortunate that I had Black books in my home. It really shaped me and the ideas I want to put across. I always had a special connection to Langston Hughes and his poetry. I live in Harlem now not far from the Langston Hughes home.”

Hoyes also lists Sade, Anita Baker, and Billie Holiday among her inspirations.

“Waiting for the World (Tired)” not only celebrates Black Heritage Month, but Hoyes said it pursues sonic time travel, linking the past with the future — intoning Hughes’s 1930 poem on racial reckoning “Tired” across a lush, synth-infused landscape of her imagining.

On the heels of her successful 2020 single “Zora’s Moon,” Vogue Magazine spotlighted Hoyes for her “chill-inducing range,” and JazzFM (UK) named her “an artist with the most eclectic and delicious voice ever.”

The song was also spotlighted on NPR’s “Here and Now.”

A multi-genre vocalist, archivist, and sampler, Hoyes is an artist and producer with an eye for bringing “Black history into the present,” according to NPR.

She is a winner of the coveted 2020 NYC Women’s Fund for extraordinary recording artists.

To connect more deeply with the energy of Hughes’s poetry, Hoyes spent time in his historic brownstone in Harlem.

When inspiration struck, she sat by his piano and began writing, ultimately collaborating with Grammy award-winning jazz pianist Sullivan Fortner.

“Waiting for the World (Tired)” is produced by Grammy award-winning producer Casey Benjamin and features Fortner, Chris Parks, and Grammy award-winning drummer Mark Colenburg.

The new song features a virtual tour of Black-owned and Queer-owned bookstores and book clubs, including Well-Read Black Girl, Vintage Black Glamour, Yaya Bookstore, Bowties and Books, and more.

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