American Idol-Hollywood finalist, Amma Whatt, released her debut EP 'Maybe' to awaiting fans in 2012. This release garnered Amma a nomination for Soultracks.com’s “Best New Artist”, and debuted at #3 in the R&B/Soul category on Bandcamp.com. After remaining in the Top 8 for over 6 weeks, "Maybe" positioned Amma at the forefront of new underground, indie favorites, and SoulTrain.com says her hybrid fusion of R&B, world music, hip-hop, and jazz has her "...poised to take soul music to the next level...” Amma grew up in Brooklyn learning Afro-Cuban Orisha chants and music, and Sene-Gambian dance, from both her parents who toured the world and performed professionally throughout her childhood. Having honed her musical skills at Howard University, Amma has toured internationally as in-demand songwriter, vocal producer, and supporting vocalist.
Amma co-wrote “Just the Way You Are” for Kindred and The Family Soul with the Grammy-nominated songwriting team Big Drawz Music, and was a lead vocalist/co-composer for improvisational funk group, Vinx and the Groove Heroes. Amma’s signature vocals were featured in a national TV-ad campaign theme “Get Happy” for the retailer Homegoods, and was heard daily by millions of viewers from 2012-2015. Amma was also featured in the Oscar-nominated song “Raise It Up” from the movie “August Rush”, and She performed the song at the 2008 Academy Awards. As a part of the band “Kinfolk”, led by jazz sensation Nate Smith, Amma will lend what the NY Times calls her “…silk-infused vocals.” to their international tour this October. Kinfolk’s critically acclaimed album “Postcards from Everywhere” features Amma as both songwriter of all the album’s lyrics, and guest vocalist.
Other recent engagements include a European tour with Black Rock Coalition, The Kennedy Center Jazz Cafe with Nate Smith & Kinfolk (Washington, DC), The Blue Note (NYC), Chateau Vallon (Toulon, France), BRIC Jazz Festival (Brooklyn, NY), and the Winter Jazz Festival (New York, NY). Amma has opened for and performed with a wide array of music artists including Common, Musiq Soulchild, Tweet, Meshell Ndegeocello, Jose Milan, Chante Cann, Eric Roberson, Gordon Chambers, Glenn Lewis and more. Amma's recent writing endeavors have put her in the studio to record with, Gretchen Parlato, Blitz the Ambassador, Mark De Clive Lowe, Ian Friday, and Bilal to name a few. As a Fund for New Work grant recipient from Harlem Stage, Amma will continue to stretch her artistic reach into new and enriching artistic endeavors.