After hustling the Nashville scene as an R&B singer/songwriter for years, Ruby Amanfu is stepping into her own.
The Ghana-born, Nashville-raised singer (formerly one half of the duo Sam & Ruby) recently propelled herself to the musical forefront with her 2015 solo album, “Standing Still,” an album she recorded in five days in a secluded cabin in Tennessee.
Amanfu’s work is familiar, even if the singer herself is not. She’s the sultry voice on Jack’s White “Love Interruption,” a background voice on Beyonce’s “Lemonade,” and has worked with numerous other musical greats like Wanda Jackson, Patti LaBelle, Dan Wilson and the Alabama Shakes. She has seen fame by way of a European tour, performing at the Grammys, on “Saturday Night Live” and “Late Night with David Letterman.” Her talents earned her a Grammy nomination for a song co-written by Katie Herzip and performed by Canadian band, The Duhks.
Most recently, Amanfu has graced the pages of Rolling Stone magazine and played herself on an episode of “Nashville.”
She’s everywhere, in her own subtle way.
Amanfu’s performances mix the depth and range of her voice with the emotion she pours into each song. She can easily oscillate from pop-country to a more sultry tribal sound. She was exposed to Nashville’s musical roots at an early age, and it shows.
Her latest single, co-written by Scot Stewart, is a politically charged anthem titled “When They Go Low — We Go High.” It was released on Inauguration Day as a reminder of the current state of affairs and encourages Americans to be kind and continue to move forward as one.
In a news release following the release of the song, Amanfu said: “Like a lot of our country right now, I have been completely affected by America’s current state … I, too, have extremely strong convictions about what’s going on like so many of us do. I try to find ways to voice my opinions while staying ‘above the noise.’ This does not in any way mean staying silent.”
Amanfu has always known who she is. Even in the crosshairs of musical genres, she knows her strengthens and understands her range. And with the rise of her solo projects and tour, the world gets to see it, too.
8:30 p.m. March 10
Trinity United Methodist Church, 225 W. President St.