Former Def Jam/Uptown Records executive James E. Jones (aka Pastor Jones) he’s laying the groundwork to launch “Nothing Compares,” the soul-stirring radio single by 21-year singer Anastasia who is poised to make some major noise in both the gospel and urban radio worlds.
Jones made a name for himself in the `90s working with acts ranging from Mary J. Blige and Heavy D to serving as A&R chief for “The Nutty Professor” and “Rush Hour” motion picture soundtracks. Over the last few years, he’s served as an Atlanta area pastor while also producing top tier gospel acts such as Mary Mary and Tye Tribbett.
Anastasia and Jones, who happens to be her uncle, are busy tweaking the gorgeous chanteuse’s debut CD Where Life Begins (Over & Above Music Group) that promises to stretch the borders of gospel music with an array of urban contemporary rhythms that leap from smooth, retro soul jams like “Lord, Have Your Way” to blistering, club-styled numbers like Reminisce.”
Anastasia simply adds, “It’s time for something different,” as she creates this music that will appeal to young adults who would rather groove to the styles of Beyonce or Rhianna than the average gospel singer.
However, Anastasia, who has done background vocals for Mary Mary and Kierra Sheard, feels another call that’s just as strong as her music. This Georgia Perimeter College accounting major is a virgin and wants to encourage other young adults to remain chaste until marriage. It may be a rare viewpoint in today’s sex-crazed, do-anything-to-be-seen social climate but Anastasia is all about drawing people to Christ as a positive role model.
“I am in love with this project because it’s not traditional,” she confesses. “It’s something new and something fresh. I feel like we really need this because there are so many youth out there that need to be touched and they don’t have anyone or anything to relate to and I feel like I am that person. You can be unique. You can be fly. You can be classy and still be saved.”