UK worship leader and songwriter Donna Akodu has released a new single entitled 'Unshakeable Faith'. Louder Than The Music chatted with Donna to hear all about her music, and her desire to encourage people to connect more with God.
For those who haven't heard of you before, can you tell us a bit about yourself and how you got involved in making music?
My name is Donna Akodu a born and raised Londoner, I've been a Christian since the age of 16 and started writing songs from around that time (nothing anyone will want to or will ever hear hahaha).
I've been involved in music in church from around that age too. I really started looking into songwriting when I was encouraged to do so by my friend and brother Noel Robinson, we used to do a lot of writing together, and singing with him for over 20 years helped as well! I've been a worship leader all that time too.
Tell us about your new single 'Unshakeable Faith' and what the inspiration behind it was?
When Sam and I were writing together back in 2016 we were talking around Hebrews 11 about having the kind of faith that doesn't move you no matter the weather, faith that anchors you to stand through it all. What that would look like, so this song was birthed out of that really. I wanted to write something to encourage people.
Do you have any plans to release further music in the near future?
I want to release more music as and when I can. It's a process and with the current situation is challenging at times, but I'm learning to be more creative and find different ways to do that.
What message would you like people to take from your music?
I want my music to encourage people to connect with God, my songs are my testimonies, they are about my journey and I'm hoping that somewhere in there they connect with people who hear them and sing them.
How would you describe your style of music and what are your influences?
My music is a combination of the collective cultures I have grown up around in London, I listen to all kinds of musical styles really R&B, a little bit of rock, classical, funk, calypso, afro beats so all of these have influenced me in some way. It's given me the sound that you'll hear in my music.
If you could work with any songwriter, who would it be and why?
Can I have more than one? Please... Hands down Graham Kendrick and Matt Redman, why? because their songs have shaped church worship, I don't think anyone hasn't sung one of their songs. They have written songs that have chronicled the church's journey in worship.
How would you define success in your career as an artist?
What is success? I suppose it's seeing people connect to my stories (I'm a storyteller, someone who uses words and music to tell a story that hopefully will resonate with those who listen to and that it gives them hope) and then through that connecting to God.
What is your favourite album of all time?
Not because I sang on it but because it was a great album Worthy in the place by Noel Robinson. It was fresh, it was the sound of the UK for us being part of it was groundbreaking...
You're stuck on an island, it's hot, you only have enough battery life left to listen to one song on your phone. What track is it?
Only enough battery life for one song... It would have to be the Hallelujah chorus Quincy Jones style classic mix with a modern twist.
What does the next year hold for you?
I really don't know we'll see what happens, I have few things I've been talking to God about whether they are for now or not we'll see.