In The Spotlight: Singer Xav A

Another great spotlight for you all before the holidays! As always, if you are an upcoming artist, designer, dancer, etc., and are interested in being featured on The Spotlight, please visit our Features/Submissions page for more information!

Today, we have singer Xav A.! He actually hails from Prince George's County, Maryland (the same area I'm from!), and began singing when he was little. "I loved singing since I was young, and I really wanted to be a performer," Xav said. As he got older, his voice changed, hitting a really low range. and he found that his voice was not an exact match for a lot of the hits he heard on the radio. "It ended up kind of motivating me to write and produce my own music," the singer said.

As he continued to hone his craft, Xav A. joined an all-male acapella group at his alma mater, Dartmouth College, called the Dartmouth Aires. "That really just started to shape and cultivate my talent, because I was performing so much," the artist stated. Xav admitted that the group was very silly and fun, and he actually absorbed a lot of that into his own artistry. The group even went on to compete in NBC's a capella competition, The Sing-Off, on the show's third season! The group won second place, runner up to Pentatonix, and it was an experience that Xav believes helped refine his talent. "With a show like that where you're performing a new song every week, a different dance every week, it was a lot of learning stuff way quicker that I had to at any other point," he admitted. "[It was a lot of] being 'on,' and performing at my highest level more often than I ever had to do."

Currently, Xav A. is working on his music independently, writing lyrics, composing music, and even choreographing! Inspired by artists like Tina Turner, Mariah Carey, Whitney Houston, and even pop groups like NSYNC and the Backstreet Boys, the singer's work falls under alternative R&B, and is very laid back and great to jam to! His most recent track, "Lazy," is a prime example of Xav A.'s energetic style. "I actually wrote that song in my head when I was working at a retail job that I had," he laughed. "It was pretty literal at that point, like I would love to be doing anything else beside folding and cutting up boxes in the back of this store." On his break, he recorded his catchy tune on his phone and later developed it into a full song! He also created a colorful, fun video for the track (his very first music video in fact) which you can check out below!

"Lazy" was actually the lead track from Xav's EP, Full Circle, which he released in September 2015. The singer called the project the culmination of a "long, musical journey." After moving to NYC after graduating from Dartmouth, his R&B music wasn't as well-received as he had hoped. He then turned to creating pop music, but his heart wasn't really into it. "This EP really speaks to me trying to really come back to R&B, which is a style that I love to sing the most," Xav said, stating that his full circle journey from R&B to pop and back to R&B inspired the title. Drawing from 90s/early '00s R&B and go go music, the artist is developing good music that listeners will easily vibe to. "I really want them to see that I have a talent that I want to go down in history like that music has gone down in history," he said. "I'm trying to create something that is bigger than myself, and so this is really the start of me diving in and trying to create that. Just something that can be legendary."

Currently, Xav A. is working on a full-length album, reaching out within the NYC community to create awesome, classic music. In terms of what sets him apart from other artists, Xav states that his appearance is more vibrant and care-free, and that his music is more vulnerable than other R&B artists out right now. In the future, Xav would love to be running his own live shows, creating a grand experience, complete with video, costumes, and dancers, that listeners will love, an idea that he's actually working on now. "I think once that's created then people will really be able to see my vision and understand where I'm coming from," the artist stated. 
You can check out more from Xav A. on his official website, as well as YouTube and SoundCloud. You can also connect with him on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram

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