Catching pop radio fire with her latest infectious single, the female empowerment anthem “Pleasure is Mine,” independent pop singer/songwriter Alya pulled off a dynamic double coup the week of November 23.
In addition to tying Adele’s latest release “Oh My God” with Most Adds (12) on the Mainstream Top 40 Most Added section of the Billboard Pop Airplay/Mainstream Top 100 National Airplay chart, the multi-talented performer made history as the first Russian born artist ever to hit the chart.
Inspired by her native Slavic mythology, allegories and metaphors – including numerous references to rushing water, waves and rushing rivers – the sensual and sultry, subtly exotic and richly symphonic song was written by Alya and produced by Grammy, Emmy and Dove Award winning engineer/producer Bill Schnee, who has worked with everyone from Steely Dan and Chicago to Natalie Cole and Whitney Houston throughout his five decade career.
Released September 17, “Pleasure is Mine” is the follow-up single to Alya’s breakthrough single “American Beauty” (also produced by Schnee), which generated nearly 500,000 Spotify streams and whose dance remix by Dave Aude (Grammy winner for his remix of “Uptown Funk”) reached #16 on Billboard’s Hot Dance/Electronica Club Songs chart in only two weeks.
“Though the imagery of ‘Pleasure is Mine’ is rooted in my Slavic culture, I am grateful that the song is connecting with people in so many unique ways,” Alya says. “During the pandemic when so many were isolated, people had the opportunity to be more introspective about who they are and what they want to do with their lives. At heart, it’s a song about understanding who you are and staying true to yourself. There are a lot of stereotypes about Russian women and I hope that the song serves to broaden people’s understanding a bit and explain femininity from our perspective, using lifegiving water imagery so many can relate to.
“The message of the song comes to life with music that also taps into my Russian heritage with the exotic and orchestral sounds,” she adds. “The title is all about female empowerment and the way the expression of femininity can lead to people feeling pleased with themselves and their innermost truths.”
The just released video for “Pleasure is Mine” features exotic dancers in a desert near the wreckage of a recently crashed airplane. The earthy yet sexy, eye-popping costumes were designed by fashion stylist Tara Swennen, whose clients have included Kristen Stewart, Matthew McConaughey and Allison Janney, in addition to campaigns with Chanel, Ralph Lauren, Target and Netflix. The clip received over 14,000 views the day it dropped.
On December 10, Alya will be releasing a beautiful acoustic version of “Pleasure is Mine,” which, the singer says, “will open up new, rich, tasteful and aristocratic dimensions of the song,” allowing listeners to connect with the message in a whole new, deeper way.
Connecting the theme of “Pleasure Is Mine” with her life journey as a global citizen, Alya created the Beautiful Journey series, now available on alyamichelson.org. It offers a mix of written, podcast, and video interviews that focus on the lessons that brave, beautiful, generous women have learned while building lives in a new homeland. Alya is currently working on the follow-up album to her 2019 debut collection Ten Years of Solitude, which will be fully devoted to her Slavic culture, as she continues to climb the pop charts.
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