PREMIERE – Leanna Oki releases new single, “you won’t change”

Toronto, ON-based Asian-Canadian indie artist, Leanna Oki is known to blend elements of soulful pop, R&B, and electronica music. Today she shares her new single, “you won’t change”.

Written and recorded independently by Leanna herself, “you won’t change” has an ethereal dreamy pop feel reminiscent of Katy Perry’s “Unconditionally” with a more stripped-down sound. The song features bouncy synth drums, ambient bass and intricate harmonies that pull you into Leanna’s headspace. Lyrically, it conveys her emotional journey and liberation after moving on from people in her life who wouldn’t change for the better. 

Check out “you won’t change” below, and find out more about Leanna via our Five Questions With segment.

Care to introduce yourself to our readers?

Hey! My name is Leanna Oki and I am an Asian-Canadian indie artist from Toronto, Ontario! I have been creating my own music for over 5 years and am self-taught in guitar, piano, and music production. Music has always been an important part of my life and is now my emotional outlet and way of self-expression. I stepped into the studio for the first time in 2018 to record my first track and released my debut single in August 2020. Since then, I have been continuously working on music and refining my sound and style. Apart from being a musician, I am also a University of Toronto graduate with a degree in psychology, an avid coffee and tea drinker, and an animal lover.

Tell us a bit about your music and writing style.

I would describe my music as a blend of electro-pop and soulful R&B, but I am constantly experimenting with different genres and styles depending on the type of song I am creating. I really love using an abundance of vocal stacks and harmonies, prominent beats, and rich basslines to create my unique sound. Typically, I draw inspiration to write from personal experiences that are very profound or difficult for me to talk about. My writing process usually begins with playing different melodies on the piano or guitar and then allow the lyrics to flow naturally.

How have you been keeping creative during the Pandemic?

Throughout the pandemic, I have been continuously working on my craft as an artist by consistently singing, writing songs, playing instruments, learning new production techniques, and sharing my work on social media. I have also been independently recording a series of songs that are set to release this year, so I can’t wait for you to hear them!

If you were asked to suggest only one of your songs for someone to hear, which would it be?

I would say my last single “Sink”, which I released at the end of March this year. To this day, it is still one of the most important songs I’ve ever written because it allowed me to express how I was feeling during a really difficult and isolating time in my life. I’m really proud of this track and think it showcases my emotions and sound in a really powerful way, but all of my tracks hold a special place in my heart.

Canadian Beats is all about Canadian music, so who are your current favourite Canadian bands/ artists?

Some of my current favourite Canadian artists include Jessie Reyez and Allan Rayman. Their bold and edgy style has really influenced my current artistry and sound. City and Colour is also one of my all-time favourites and his music helped me get through my teenage years. I can’t leave out Celine Dion who continues to inspire me to sing with soul and passion with her legendary power ballads.

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