CityLife Arts

Vocalist Joya Mooi turning her teenage identity era issues into inspirational songs

Born of a South African father and her Dutch Mother, she is harnessing that identity into inspirational sound with the release of her single Remembering

By CityLife Arts Writer

Born of a then exiled South African father and a Dutch mother, growing up in the Netherlands, the vocalist had issues with her identity. But now as a musician carving out a career for herself in the music industry, she has turned her identity confusion of yesteryear into an inspiration for her soulful sound.

Meet Joya Mooi.

The South African-Dutch singer-songwriter Joya Mooi has dropped her brand new single Remember off her forthcoming project. Joya is known for her enchanting vocals that have seen her win hearts and devoted fans over the years. Her music is a blend of soul and alternative R&B with a  strong jazz influence. She exercises self-expression in impeccably creative ways and this makes her even more delightful. With the success of her debut EP Blossom Carefully, her new music is a testament to her staying power in the music scene. 

She returns with a brand new single Remember, accompanied by a stunning music video directed by Bob Sizoo and Najim Jansen. 

Joya Mooiis hoping her music transcends, touches people and connects her with her beyond boundaries. Connect, more especially her roots in South Africa which she will always consider her home. Born from a South African father and Dutch mother, her parents met in Angola while her father was in exile; and growing up in the Netherlands she had issues with belonging and music assisted with that.  

She is trained in Jazz but her sound leans more to alternative neo-soul and R&B- 

“I might have studied Jazz but in the last 10 years, I’ve been navigating into an electronic, soul and R&B kind of sound. The sound in my next project is very fluid and intuitive,” says Joya Mooi. 


Blending soul and alternative R&B, Joya Mooi is one of the modern soul’s most exciting artists and Remember, showcases her sophisticated style and enchanting vocals, and sees her reflect on the words of wisdom shared decades before us. 


Joya Mooi explains – “When I was writing ‘Remember’ I was thinking a lot about the reckoning that a lot of thinkers, writers go through with their recipients. Thoughts that seemed revolutionary in the past, were hardly actually listened to, and are now part of our collective memory, part of our IG quotes and referred to in pop culture. I’m intrigued by how works are received, how much our current time dictates to what extent we can listen. I try to hold work I love close…that’s kind of easy. But this song reminds me to be open to any idea, because even when some things may sound ‘radical’, I might welcome it with open arms in a few years…but it may need attention now.” 

An artist with incredibly thoughtful lyricism, Joya Mooi’s music has garnered support from the likes of BBC Radio 1Xtra’s Jamz Supernova, Rinse FM’s Jyoty and Dutch Radio station 3FM, who highlighted her as a ‘3FM Talent’. She also took part in online concerts for Eurosonic Noorderslag and Vice earlier this year and has won fans in Vogue NL, CLASH, Earmilk, Metal magazine, Dummy mag and many more. With more music set to follow, Joya Mooi’s star continues to rise with incredible promise. 


Joya Mooi: Instagram I Spotify I Soundcloud 

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