Neo Joshua was born in Nottingham but moved to East London as a young child.
As NAO, she starting writing songs in her mid-twenties after a few years teaching school kids to sing, doing backing vocal gigs for the likes of Pulp and Kwabs and for 6 years with all girl a capella group The Boxettes. She took the brave step to put her own songwriting to the test in 2014 with her debut ‘So Good’ EP and by January 2016 she was placed third in the high-profile BBC Sound Poll.
She grew up in South Woodford, East London, listening to gospel in her local Evangelical church, her brother’s jungle UK Garage, her sister’s 90s and 00s R&B – going on study at the prestigious Guildhall School of Music and Drama. When she took the brave step to put her own songs down – inspired by Little Dragon – the ideas flowed. The title track of that debut EP, a track called ‘So Good’ made with producer A.K. Paul soon whizzed around the world, accumulating millions of plays on Soundcloud. This was followed by a second EP, February 15 (II MMXV), in May 2015
Her emergence as one of the most adored new singers of the year has been as fluid and elegant as one of her vocal phrases. Now she has delivered her highly anticipated debut “For All We Know”, a transcendent set of 18 songs. Woozy, spacey funk, shot through with her effortless breath-taking toplines, part neo-soul, part UK bass, part funk rock – all at a sensual, stepping R&B pace.
The record features favourite singles like “Girlfriend”, “Inhale Exhale”, “Bad Blood” and “Fool To Love” as well as incredible unheard tracks like “Trophy” – where NAO recombines with A.K. Paul again – and “Get To Know Ya” co-produced by XL Recordings’ Jungle. Other co-producers (NAO is credited as producer on 17 of the 18 tracks) include her good friends John Calvert (“In The Morning”, “Blue Wine”, “We Don’t Give A”), GRADES (“Bad Blood”, “Fool To Love”, “Inhale Exhale”, “Girlfriend”) and LOXE (“Adore You” and “Give Me A Little”).
“For All We Know” is the record of a one-of-a-kind artist destined for greatness. A record you can dip your head into for a 360-degree spectrum of kaleidoscopic digi-funk.