High Frequency: Meet music mavens Nova Wav

TheGrio is kicking off Black Music Month with "High Frequency," our celebration of trailblazing Black Women in music. 

Nova (pron: no-vuh); noun: an explosion from the surface of a white dwarf star in a binary star system.

Wav (pron: wae-v); noun: Waveform Audio File Format 

It’s Black Music Month, and theGrio is kicking it off with a brand-new digital series: “High Frequency,” a miniseries profiling five remarkable Black women breaking barriers and creating watershed moments within the music industry.

For our first episode, meet Grammy award-winning producer/songwriter duo Nova Wav, comprised of Denisia “Blu Jones” Andrews and Brittany “Chi” Coney. Together, the two are an explosive combination of talent, humility, and sisterhood. In short, Nova Wav is a force to be reckoned with. 

The duo’s stars aligned through a mutual industry acquaintance who played musical matchmaker. Chi recalls being messaged with a request for beats on the platform that birthed the social media phenomenon as we know it, MySpace. Taking a chance, she responded, “I don’t usually do this, but OK, cool.” Upon receiving the tracks, Blu recalls thinking, “Wow, I know nobody in this town made this track because it was futuristic.” Blu hopped on the track, and several correspondences later, they knew they had IT. In 2011, Chi convinced Blu to quit her job and move from Tampa, Florida, to Atlanta so they could work together full-time. The rest is history. 

Nova Wav burst onto the scene full-throttle. Just a little over a year later, with the power of prayer and unwavering faith, Blu and Chi booked a one-way ticket to L.A. and never turned back. They landed their first placement with Rihanna and Future’s “Loveeeeeee Song,” generating buzz for themselves. Suddenly, Nova Wav was a hot commodity, writing for Jay-Z, Mariah Carey, Nicki Minaj, Ariana Grande, DJ Khaled, and many other talents. Most recently, the powerhouse duo co-wrote eight songs on Beyoncé’s acclaimed “Renaissance” album, earning their first Grammy win for the most infectious track of the year, “Cuff It.” Specifically, you can also thank them for “Pure/Honey,” “Energy,” “Heated,” and Blu’s background vocals on “Alien Superstar.” 

In an industry known for its often cutthroat ethos, Chi was kind enough to drop her top three gems for succeeding as an upcoming songwriter/producer: 

1.      Put in those 10,000 hours — in other words, DO THE WORK!

2.      You don’t have to be confident; just be courageous.

3.      Work with other people. Build your tribe.

If you know, you know. You know a Neptunes beat when you hear it. You know a Timbaland beat when you hear it. So, what is Nova Wav’s secret sauce? 

“We’re of service. That’s our secret sauce. We’re truly of service,” says Chi. “The way that you’re gonna know a Nova Wav sound is by the pen, for sure. The melody is second, and it’s going to be empowering, it’s going to be slick, it’s going to be saucy, it’s going to be fire.”

Screenshot: theGrio

Nova Wav’s current trajectory is stratospheric. From DJ’ing to clothing and on-screen appearances, these women have set no bounds to what they can achieve, and rightfully so. They’ve already proven they have the Midas touch. 

Want to learn more about Nova Wav and other Black women changing the face of contemporary music? Tune into “High Frequency” on theGrio.com each Thursday throughout Black Music Month to catch the latest episodes.

Chelsea Felin is the brand partnerships manager for theGrio & HBCUgo

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