Artist and songwriter Zanna is approaching bigger and better things this summer. Born and raised in the Cotswolds in the UK, there were few other options than to immerse herself in music in her free time. Since then, she’s had the opportunity to live in two of the best music capitals of the world: London and LA.
Here’s what she has to say about the experience: “I grew up as one of four girls in a very musical family. I did all the classical grades in the piano and taught myself guitar, and would gig and busk all the time. On top of this, my parents wrote songs, which made it an accessible thing and totally normal for me to do the same. As a teenager, I recorded songs I’d written on my dad’s GarageBand, and listening back it’s honestly pretty laughable. But I kept going – I knew it was one of the only things I really wanted to do, eventually, full time.
I chose an unrelated degree that got me to London – which is where I knew I would have ample opportunity to work on the craft. London is a pretty spectacular city, full of character and inspiration. The music industry is pretty small, so I found myself ‘in’ very quickly. I spent some time working for Warner Music UK, it gave me the insight I was searching for. That being, it takes more integrity to know what you’re good at and to work hard to refine your gifts, and then it’s your responsibility to work hard, to be a yes person, and to not give up.
Self-releasing my EP On Repeat whilst I was at Warner gave me a bit of a head start with record labels, and I found myself working with some of the best producers in the industry writing songs to pitch to other artists, one of them being Dillistone, who I ended up working on my latest single with. We hit it off straight away. Sometimes there’s a particular ‘studio chemistry’ with someone, and it’s just easy. Our goal was to write something that we were both currently feeling, and to craft it so listeners could immediately relate. That’s how I Wish You Were Here came about – it’s that late-night feeling that everyone is experiencing somewhere about someone.
LA was a different story entirely. It’s a city built on dreams and aspirations. I came out here to volunteer for a church, as I’ve released a lot of Christian music under my born name, Susie Woodbridge. But due to my London music connections, I rapidly found myself in sessions over here with some iconic producers and songwriters when I wasn’t at church. All just for the fun of it, and for the sake of not losing the dream I’ve had since before I can remember.”
So the next thing for Zanna: some exciting songwriting opportunities in LA, her new single with Dillistone I Wish You Were Here, and pretty much guaranteed success as a result of her drive, talent, and perseverance to fight to do what she loves at all costs.