“I often get these visions of me singing on this big stage. It’s like a preview commercial. And then it flashes to me talking to the people. I see tears. And I see people free”, says Drea d’Nur. “It’s not so much because of me, but because of the truth.” And because of the Nur, which is Arabic for LIGHT.
She doesn't take credit for her musical gifts. At the age of 17, while pregnant with Drea, her mother prayed that she would be given special musical abilities that would touch the world like those of Gospel singer and songwriter Andrae Crouch. “My mom even named me after him—Andrea. I still don’t know what made her pray that prayer”. And she grew to sing, write poignant songs, and play the piano by ear, just like Crouch.
In 2007, ABC World News Now featured Drea d’Nur for Dr. MLK’s birthday. She used Craigslist.org to find and rehearse with musicians just 2 days before the performance. It’s amazing to watch an unlearned musician direct trained and experienced musicians in musical production and performance.
Drea d’Nur is known for her electrifying live performances where she seems to channel Nina Simone, Bob Marley, and Marvin Gaye. Her spirit is just as warm as her voice. She has a way of curling the end of each note. Every note, every word, every phrase matters to Drea. And her passionate delivery reinforces this truth.
Her sound is very distinctive. Sensitive. Strong. “Someone once told me that my voice was like cotton. Just as soft as it can be to your skin, it can be used to clean wounds.” There are moments where you hear the pain in her voice. You heard it in Gladys Knight. You heard it in Mary J. Blige. You heard it in Tupac. And it seems to resonate with everyone who hears her.
Drea d’Nur started the year 2012 with a trip to Germany for a collaborative recording with hip hop femcee, Akua Naru. Her distinctive, strong, yet sensitive voice has also afforded her the opportunity to share the stage with R&B chartoppers Tank and Avant.
“I need a song that will help me make it through. And I know that I have to write that song. And I have to sing that song. Because someone else needs it too.”