Poetic soul. Dramatic folk. Melodic bitch slaps.
Antonia Vai is a Swedish singer-songwriter with Hungarian roots, born and raised in Stockholm. In 2013 she moved to Budapest and had a breakthrough on the Hungarian music scene. Known as the “bohemian soul diva”, she has gained big attention on Hungarian TV and radio, was nominated for ”Songwriter of the year” by Artisjus, shared the stage with international acts like Selah Sue (BE) and Yasmine Hamdan (LB) and played at countless festivals and clubs around Europe.
Antonia has been playing instruments and writing songs since her early childhood. As a teenager, she started recording and producing her songs alone in her bedroom. After living a year in London, and moving around in Europe, she finally released two self-produced albums at the same time, “Lovers and Prophets“ and “Dirt From When The Earth Was Flat“, in September 2012.
After moving to Budapest in 2013, Antonia recorded the album “Stories After Bedtime” in the Szimpla ruinpub, together with Swedish guitarist/producer Felix Gröndahl, percussionist Adam Gilinger, trumpet player Krisztian Muhari and bass player Adam Zdosek. The first single from the album was “The Pirate’s Waltz” and the full album was released in September 2014, on A38, Budapest.
This was the start of ‘Antonia Vai Band’, and since then they have attracted a big audience on the underground music scene in Hungary. The band toured the country with alternative rock band Quimby, played at MR2 Akusztik, did a song with Sena (Irie Maffia) for Balcony TV and had a sold-out show at MÜPA, Palace of Arts, in June 2015. They then released “Remember How” together with Saiid from Akkezdet Phiai, which was the first single from the EP, ‘Tightrope’, released in February 2016.
Antonia Vai released her fifth album “Ritual” in September 2017 which had a sold-out premier at Budapest’s at A38 club in Budapest. The making of the album took place on different continents, as Antonia decided to travel and create an album on the road. ”Ritual” is an alternative pop-soul album with influences from world music, recorded with musicians from Morocco, Hungary, Sweden and Brazil. The songs are versatile in styles, from the dark tango “Love Song For An Ex” to the flamenco-R&B ”Warrior Soul” or the obscure pop-ballad ”The Witch”.
Antonia about the album:
”I had to hit the road and be a nomad for a while to find my voice again. The result became Ritual. My inner revolution. A celebration of freedom, strength, mysticism, the woman in me. I sang myself through catastrophes and returned with these songs.”
Duna TV, Csodabogár müsor (adás: 2015.08.01)
FIX TV, interjú (adás: 2015.06.09)
We Love Budapest (cikk)
Footer Magazin (cikk)
Said about Antonia Vai
“Is there room for another Swedish singer in my musical affections? If her name is Antonia Vai, then the answer is yes.”
”A singer and songwriter of world class”.
Dr Indie / Blaskan
“Antonia Vai is a magnificent storyteller, who gives you a spiritual striptease and explosions of energy. She connects sharp rhytms with unexpected melodies. You have to hear this!”
“She hovers between folk and soul, chanson and jazz, rock and pop. On top of it all, she has a genuine intensity, and at the same time, a relaxed moderation. Antonia Vai is a unique experience.”
“Antonia Vais whole presence. There’s something about her. Something primordial. She’s the ancestress of every soul. The first time I saw her on stage just strengthened this thought. The way she moves to music, and communicates with the audience could be the guide for finding God. You think I’m in love with her? Wait ‘til you see her sing!”
Dori Varga Collection
“Antonia Vai surprises with captivating mellow easy listening songs as well as taunting and psychic over the top outbursts of emotion.”
“Innovative and unique. It’s acoustic, with guitar and congas, and beautiful harmonies blended together in catchy rhytms. Antonia Vais voice is different and full of emotions – I don’t think I’ve heard anything like this before. The way she plays with her voice and the melodies, it kind of resembles Regina Spektor, but Antonia still manages to find her complete own style.”