The African-American gospel music tradition has always been a perennial wellspring of captivating vocal talent, their voices fully formed and spilling over with passion. And now Ywada—a Sarasota, Florida-born singer/songwriter with a dazzling voice and a dizzying vocal range—is getting major love for her powerful instrument, garnering comparisons to church-trained, crossover divas like Aretha Franklin, Toni Braxton and the late Whitney Houston. Opening appearances for such acts like Fantasia, Ledisi, Avant, and Anthony Hamilton, and on 106 & Park garnered her much needed exposure as she lit up stages as a popular live attraction on the music scene.

Ywada, which means to care and understand, is set to debut her forthcoming EP, Perception Against Reality, this fall—a soulful 10-song project told from the perspective of a woman on the verge of her own clear-eyed, grown-up revelations about the hills, valleys and plateaux of love.—Sun Singleton

Listen to more from the gifted R&B songstress at Ywada.com, and follow her on Twitter @ywada3.

Sun Singleton is a Virginia-born singer/journalist based in New York City. Follow her on Twitter @sunsing.

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