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“Spread love and just genuine music, ya know,” says Dolla of WHOAA (pictured) about the group’s musical message. “That music that just pours through your soul, and it’s all about just giving glory to God and just spreading love.” Photo: Emma MacDonald/VOX ATL

VOXClusive Interview: WHOAA Brings Their Own Wave

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As Atlanta continues to suffer from withdrawals after the close of the 43rd Annual Atlanta Film Festival we are left to reflect on the art and experiences cultivated by the creatives who were present. Two of these creatives being Dolla and Ring who comprise the pop duo WHOAA. These two artists brought their energy and spunk to the stage as the first set for the ATLFF Sound And Vision event held on the lawn of Historic Fourth Ward Park. Female vocalist Ring captivated the audience as her golden curls took on whatever hue the ever-changing lights emitted as she strutted about the stage.

Ring (l) and Dolla (r) of WHOAA share a moment on stage. Photo: Emma MacDonald/VOX ATL

Her counterpart Dolla however, kept his appearance somewhat more sibylline with his dark clothing and tinted glasses that kept his eyes hidden from the crowd. The two entities were somehow able to appear as complete opposites while simultaneously being inseparable.

Their self proclaimed “genreless music” from upbeat, 80s-esque songs such as “Candy Love” to more angsty songs such as “Poison,” WHOAA was able to hype up the outdoor crowd with their zeal and vitality, even with the looming threat of dark rain clouds overhead. At one point in their performance, the duo even called up some members of the audience to jump and dance with them in the colorful light illuminating the stage.

Overall WHOAA was able to deliver an exuberant performance as a precursor to the screening of their music video “Candy Love” as a part of the Atlanta Film Festival. Before they made their way over to Paris on Ponce for the presentation of their film, VOX ATL was able to secure a quick interview:

VOX ATL: So first off, can you tell me who are you and what would you say your music is about?

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Ring: I’m Ring.

Dolla: And I’m Dolla.

Both: And we are WHOAA.

Dolla: And WHOAA is an acronym which stands for “When Hearts Open And Attract.” So our music is feel-good music, party music, funky music, it’s got a little blend of pop, rock, hip-hop, and funk.

Ring: Yes, we basically like to take everything we are influenced by and incorporate that in our own music so yeah it’s a little bit of everything.

Dolla: We’re talking about Prince, we’re talking about Guns & Roses, we’re talking about Michael Jackson, you’re talking about all those funky groups. We’re just trying to blend it all together and make something pretty funky.

VOX ATL: What’s the impact that you want to have, or the message you want to send out to people with your music?

Dolla: Spread love and just genuine music, ya know, like that music that just pours through your soul, and it’s all about just giving glory to God and just spreading love.

Ring: Yeah, all about the feel-good vibes and just bringing all types of people together you know? That’s kind of what we stand for, togetherness.

Dolla: Like a genreless, just a clash of everybody enjoying themselves and just good positive vibes.

VOX ATL: Why do you think that creatives and music, in general, can bring a community together?

Dolla: I mean, you know when you start making a song and writing it, ya know, putting your life experience into it, or just your energy, your spirit into it. Then after the recording process, you release it and perform on stage, and that performance process is what brings and unites people together. The music when you listen to it and when you come to the performance, we can actually meet and greet and talk and feel and project that love and energy up on stage, and that’s what it’s all about. It’s called the “WHOAA wave.” The “WHOAA wave” is what we spread, and that wave, once again, is “When Hearts Open and Attract.” So it’s just this feel-good reciprocation and it’s like we get to pass it on and we just get to give blessings and pass them on.

Ring: You said it very well.

Dolla: That’s the mission.

VOX ATL: If you could give any advice to aspiring musicians, specifically teens, what would it be?

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Dolla: We love it, we love it guys. Don’t give up, persistence, consistency is the key.

Ring: Exactly what he was saying, be persistent, with anything that you’re doing don’t give up. There’s gonna be a lot, a lot, of ups and downs, LOTS of them. So don’t ever get discouraged and ya know, just keep pushing.

Dolla: Stay true to something, stay true to an identity that’s about positivity, something at its core where you are spreading something good, vibes or whatever it is. Stay true to an identity and just stay consistent, don’t ever give up, even when you think people aren’t listening. For those of you looking to make it in the music industry, just because your songs aren’t on the radio or you aren’t getting a bunch of streams don’t think people aren’t listening. So don’t ever give up, stay focused, and give all your glory to God. That’s all I gotta say.

Follow WHOAA on Instagram.

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