Neo-Gospel artist Shariffa Nyan has just released her brand new 6-song EP "Every Part of Me." She captivates hearts with her sultry yet soulful melodies and life-changing lyrics. "Every Part of Me" invites listeners to embark on Shariffa Nyan's journey through life's obstacles in order to arrive to God's sufficient grace.
Shariffa Nyan is more than a conqueror in Christ as she juggles everyday commitments while maintaining a true relationship with her Creator. A mother of 3, wife and prayer warrior, this mighty woman of God still finds time to hone her musical gifts. As a young girl, her mother kept her busy in the church. By age 4, she was singing her first solo and by age 9, led her church choir. It was evident at an early age, that this young lady had a true passion and love for Christ.
Q: Shariffa, thanks for your time. Let's start with yourself. Having grown up in church and singing at age 4, how did such a Godly upbringing help you as a believer and a singer for Jesus?
A: I have to start by saying that my mother is to thank for that! She was a wonderful woman of God and believed wholeheartedly in Proverbs 22:6. She taught me early the importance of not only knowing about God, but having a true relationship with Him. She recognized my spiritual gifts early, so she did all she could to keep me close to God and the Church as a means of spiritual cultivation. I truly believe that because my mother was obedient to God's word, I was able to reap the promises of it! Somewhat of a generational thing I guess :) Music became my place of refuge; a calm in the midst of troubled storms. Through song, I learned the true meaning of worship; and it's been a combination of God's grace and my heart's unwavering desire to worship Him, that has sustained my life thus far.
Q: When did you feel the call to serve Christ through the ministry of music and worship?
A: Great question! Well, even though I started singing at an early age, I didn't have my first, real "Holy Ghost experience" until age 14. My church was hosting a Women's Conference in Moses Lake, WA. During one of the break-out sessions, the guest pastor began praying over our group of ladies and young adults. I remember feeling the holy spirit fall as she prayed, and I began to sing. Tears fell from my eyes as chains and yolks that had bound pieces of my childhood were broken. With each note, I remember feeling the power of God move through me and the anointing fell fresh over my life right then and there. I had never felt so close to God until that moment. Since that day, I knew in my heart that God had given me a voice as a weapon against the enemy; my personal tool to break down strongholds and usher in the power of the Holy Spirit.
Q: You have worked with a wide array of gospel hip-hop artists such as Credo Clay, Da-Vid, Fervent, Genuine Life, and many others. What were some of your favorite memories working with these great singers?
A: Working with an array of Christian Hip Hop artists is great because they add such a unique and hype vibe to a track. I have had the opportunity to fellowship outside of the studio with all of the artists I've worked with and it's always love when we get together! From video shoots to birthdays and baby showers, our families always have a great time in Christ laughing and encouraging one another. I consider many of them family because they keep me accountable too! Definitely a privilege to work with artists that not only sing/rap about God, but have made Christ a lifestyle as well.
Q: Let's talk about your new EP "Every Part of Me." What do you hope to communicate about Jesus through this new record?
A: Another great question! Honestly, I just wanted to give people the opportunity to see my life's journey in and out of Christ. "Every Part of Me" is my way of "keeping it real" so to speak! There were seasons where I didn't walk the "straight and narrow" path, but God still chose to use me! Songs like "Rearranged" tell how I was delivered from a season of sin and hopelessness while "Convert's Creed" is my declaration to Christ and the world that I will live for God and submit to His divine will over my life. More upbeat tracks like "I Need You" articulate how impossible it is to have true joy without God in our lives. My hopes are that listeners can relate to each track, no matter what season they're in, and see that through Jesus we have hope! That same hope gives us courage to press on another day. It is through Christ Jesus, that we are reconciled back to God and because of this reconciliation, we can walk in our true purpose for this life. No matter the amount of brokenness, past disappointments or failures, God can still use you! I guess you can say this EP is my testimony; my way of sharing the goodness of God's grace, love and mercy!
Q: The EP starts and ends with "Heart Song." Tell us more about this song.
A: "Heart Song" is probably one of my favorite tracks because it's just that, my heart's way of saying "Thank You Lord, for never leaving me alone"! I chose to begin and end the EP with that song because it brings the album full circle, much like my life in the ministry. I am reminded of Philippians 1:6 which states, "being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ (NKJV)". God began a work in me at a very early age through the ministry of music. Though I have had my shares of up's and down's, He has always been there to rescue and protect me. I believe God will continue to bring to fruition all of my hopes and dreams as long as I obediently walk in His will. "Heart Song" simply put, is my worship song, my soul's way of commissioning every part of my being, back to Him!
Q: One of the most powerful songs for me is "A Time Such as This." Tell us more about this song and what it means to you.
A: Esther chapter 4 really spoke to my heart when I wrote this song. We live in such a troubled world filled with hate, sadness, pain and frustration. In my spirit, I felt like mankind has reached a tipping-point. We can't watch the news without hearing a story of another life senselessly taken away or a corrupt political regime rising into power. Wars and rumors of wars fuel our nation's political agenda so many people blindly believe the media "hype" without considering the source. Godly values and tenants are woven out of the tapestry our nation's moral code every day. Matthew 24:6 tells us of these things but goes on to say, "...but to not be afraid for they must come to pass".
The track, "A Time Such as This" speaks to the condition that the world is currently in, but is also a petition to all those that believe in Christ to stand-up without fear of persecution. Much like Esther , we too were called for such a time as this. We must boldly move forward; standing for righteousness, holiness and peace , while resting in the favor of our Lord. I firmly believe in the power of prayer and fasting and know that they are by far our greatest weapons as believers. I hope this song will ignite a fire within believers everywhere, to usher in peace and unity throughout the world.
Q: What's next for you now that the EP is released?
A: Lots!! I have been a part of a summer concert series here in Seattle Washington alongside some of the most talented Gospel Hip Hop artists the Pacific Northwest has to offer! More performances, radio interviews, blog features, National Anthem Performances and community outreach efforts are all on the roster. I am currently working with a wonderful PR and Marketing firm to help develop my brand and keep the business side of things on point! God has been so good about opening new and exciting doors this year; I'm just trying to take it all in stride. I'm already working on new music, so stay tuned to see where God leads me next!
Q: Where can our readers find out more about you and your music?
A: I am active on most social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram; my handle is @shariffanyan. Feel free to follow, friend, and share with me! I also encourage you all to please stop by my artist website: www.shariffanyan.com for exclusive pics, music downloads and more! Thank you Hallels for extending such a wonderful opportunity for indie artists such as myself, to share our stories! It's really been a pleasure! Be blessed!