Soul And / Or Related Artists


b. Dana Williams, 24th June 1980, Washington D.C., Virginia, U.S.A.

YahZarah (a.k.a. Dana Williams) was born in Washington D.C., and has been singing since the age of 7 years old in the local church choir.

She began singing professionally at the age of 11 years old at the Kennedy Center.

Her early musical influences were Chaka Khan, Minnie Riperton and George Clinton.

At the age of 14, her father changed her name to 'YahZarah'.

The first half of her adopted name, 'Yah' came from her grandmother and means 'Queen Mother'.

The second half means 'blossom' and 'brightest star' in Arabic, which was a reference to her mothers opinions about her being a 'late developer'.

Her mother played violin, her grandmother played the piano, and her father was a soul DJ during the 1970's.

She attended the Duke Ellington School for the Performing Arts in Washington D.C., where she began singing in the school's first funk band.

It was at the School that she performed with the legendary artists Anita Baker and Stevie Wonder.

Later YahZarah relocated to North Carolina Central University, in Durham North Carolina, in the autumn of 1997, where she won a full scholarship to the University's jazz program.

She joined the ranks of Erkyka Badu's group on background vocal chores in the summer of 1998. 

Later she left North Carolina Central University to pursue her solo career.

YahZarah worked on a movie project, with the artist Common, entitled 'In Six Stops Or Less'.


hear me - 2001 / blackstar - 2003 / the ballad of purple st. james - 2010 / christmas single - 2011

In 2001, her first solo project was released on MCA entitled 'Hear Me'.

'Hear Me' featured artistic input from Marion Meadows and Bob Baldwin.

The album received good reviews and the usual comparisons with soul songstresses Eryka Badu, N'Dambi, Jill Scott, India Arie, Ledisi etc.

YahZarah has opened for the soul singer R Kelly.

Real Player


Hear Me (MCA Records 2001)

Blackstar (MCA Records 2003)

The Prelude (MCA Records 2008)

The Ballad of Purple St. James (Foreign Exchange Records 2010)

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