The Lyrical Genius of Songwriter Savannah Jada

In the vibrant world of music, emerging songwriter Savannah Jada is setting the industry ablaze. 

Hailing from the dynamic streets of London with Jamaican roots running deep, Savannah’s musical tapestry is a kaleidoscope of influences – from reggae to country, R&B to jazz, and pop to poetry. Her innate musicality began to shine at the tender age of six when she took up guitar, piano, poetry, singing, and rap. Yet, it was her unwavering passion for songwriting that truly ignited her artistic journey. In a bold move, at just 21 years old, she bid farewell to university in 2019 to chase her dreams, all while championing fellow young songwriters, especially those from underrepresented backgrounds.

Her brief yet electrifying career boasts a remarkable highlight: securing the coveted UK Afrobeat No.1 spot with S1mba’s hit track ‘Bounce’ and contributing her lyrical genius to J Hus’s eagerly awaited album ‘Beautiful and Brutal Yard,’ notably on the enchanting ‘Nice Body’ featuring Jorja Smith.

Savannah’s accolades don’t end there. She’s basked in the spotlight, collaborating with heavyweight talents such as the US production maestro London On The Da Track (known for crafting Ariana Grande’s ‘Positions’ and Drake’s ‘Sneakin”). She’s also joined forces with Grammy-award winner Jay Versace, whose production wizardry graces albums by Tyler The Creator and SZA. 

In her own words, she passionately expresses, “I want to say to all aspiring UK songwriters, WE NEED YOU. There aren’t enough of us, especially young, black, and incredibly gifted writers who can craft songs across the entire musical spectrum.”

Savannah’s journey took her across the ocean to the glamorous landscapes of LA and Miami for an exciting three-month creative voyage. During this time, she continued to collaborate with an impressive array of artists. 

Noctis Magazine chats with Savannah to understand her career as it continues to skyrocket, solidifying her status as a formidable force in the world of songwriting with unwavering confidence and unmatched finesse.

Can you tell us about that unforgettable moment when you found out your writing was featured on S1mba’s “Bounce” and it hit the No.1 spot?

I always knew it would be featured because of how close Sincere (A&R) and I were in communication. We were constantly going back and forth on different versions but I remember being in a session with AJ Productions at Miloco studios and he was the person to let me know it had gone Number 1 as he had also produced the song that was Number 1 the previous week, and I was just in total disbelief. It’s a great achievement and checkpoint to know that you’re constantly doing the right thing, the thing you love, the thing you’re born to do.

Your musical journey seems like a vibrant tapestry of genres! Could you share a fun memory of how your diverse musical influences, like reggae and R&B, have creatively collided while you were working on a song?

Being Jamaican and having spent a lot of time there throughout the years, reggae and dancehall are part of my family genes. I’ve written many songs that have yet to come out that infuse my heritage with my love for R&B in similar ways PartyNextDoor and Stalk Ashley do. ‘No Rampin’ by Alicai Harley is my only release so far that displays that nod to my heritage over a disruptive beat but I can’t wait for more songs to be released that really fuse the two worlds together beautifully.

We’re curious to know about your experience collaborating with Grammy-award winner Jay Versace and US-producing giant London On Da Track. What’s a behind-the-scenes story that stands out from those sessions?

I love Jay so much and with us being the same age I think we formed something special in our sessions due to comfortability. He’s incredibly knowledgeable about music, styles and sounds. Our first ever time meeting was a session we had in Malibu, outside overlooking the water and we just continued making great music, no pressure at all. We would order food, take walks and talk about life and funny stories in our sessions. Fun fact I learned in our sessions: Jay is a talented sketch artist.

With London, I love his approach to making music because whether he knows it or not he pushed me. Every time I picked something I liked it was because I knew I had to deliver a song that was better than the beat which made me learn I could go further than I thought in those moments as a writer especially when every top US writer is writing songs with him. Some of the most notable people I met while working with London are Coco Jones, Dixson and Sevyn Streeter. I can’t wait for the world to hear these songs!

Your decision to leave University and chase your dream is inspiring. Can you tell us about a moment during that journey when you felt like you were truly on the right path as a songwriter?

I think I got my first placement with Ragz Originale by myself due to making an introduction at Nas’s listening party for the Lost Tapes 2 was one example of when I thought I’m onto something finally. It wasn’t until I went on my first writing trip in LA in 2020 and I worked with a new artist Maeta at Roc Nation and Omar Grant (president of Roc Nation) wanted to place two of my songs, ‘Cardboard Box’ (released later by FLO) and ‘Red Button’ (released by Ceraadi) with his new girl group at the time.

Could you share some advice you’d give to fellow aspiring songwriters who are considering taking that leap of faith?

To all aspiring songwriters, WE NEED YOU. There aren’t nearly enough songwriters in the UK especially black writers that can write songs across the board. It’s important to believe in yourself as belief feeds confidence and confidence is needed to sell your skill. The more you write, the better you’ll get but being confident makes the room confident in you which will allow rooms you’re in to flourish. Lastly, don’t be a pushover as this is business but BE KIND.

With such a musical family legacy, there must have been some incredible moments growing up. Can you recall a specific family gathering where music truly brought everyone together in a special way?

It’s so funny but because my family is so engrossed in music it felt like an everyday part of our lives not necessarily any more special than any other day. But one recent memory is when my uncle Patrick was awarded an Order of Distinction by the Jamaican Government for his contribution and work within music and sports. My family in Jamaica had a celebration at our family studio in Kingston (Shocking Vibes Productions) where Beenie Man and other artists uncle Patrick has managed, produced/written for, family and friends attended. He flew to London and we celebrated him with his older siblings speaking about how rough it was and how the state of dancehall music in Jamaica was before Little Kirk and Beenie Man were released under Shocking Vibes. For me, to know the poverty and innovative thinking that existed in the minds of my family in that time was truly inspiring and is one thing that spurs me on in my own career.

Your worldwide publishing deal with Kobalt Music Group is a big milestone. How did you celebrate the news, and what new opportunities has it opened up for your songwriting career?

I celebrated the news with more sessions! It’s one of the best things that has happened to me in my career, my team have been a Godsend and have set up some of the most incredible sessions in LA and Miami. My relationships with Pop Wansel, J Kash, Jay Versace plus many more are affirmations of their hard work. Definitely family vibes and I love that!

Going from learning multiple instruments at a young age to becoming a prolific songwriter, you’ve really come a long way! Will you share a funny or heartwarming story from your childhood that showcases your early musical talents?

By no means can I play any instrument exceptionally but I can definitely find my way around each one. At 6 I’d get on my Mom’s nerves strumming and singing really loud made-up songs (I loved KFC at the time and even made one up about that!). But when I was 13 I started playing keys and would practice in my secondary school practice rooms every lunch time. One day I wrote and recorded a song on my iPod called “Snap Love”. I exported it and sent it to most of my year group and everyone who knew it loved it and would sing it back to me. That’s when I knew I definitely had something.

Collaborating with artists across different genres can be both thrilling and challenging. Could you tell us about a time when you had to creatively adapt your songwriting style to fit a completely different musical vibe?

 Working with Paloma Faith was an adapting process for me. I think we had 3 days in the diary and the first day was me learning the ropes and actually understanding her style. I truly enjoyed it and we found friendship in each other coming from different yet similar worlds of musical influence. Our adoration for Portishead and 60s Soul is how I was able to adapt by the second day exceptionally. Shout out to Rukhsana Merise who helped me find common ground in that time as a fellow artist/musician who is incredible at writing songs.

Follow Savannah Jada on Instagram

Words: Izabel Rose