After The Voice

Anthony Arya makes quick return with impressive debut album


Anthony Arya performs on Season 15 of The Voice. (NBC Photo)

Anthony Arya performs on Season 15 of The Voice. (NBC Photo)

Clearly, fans of The Voice got just a small taste of Anthony Arya’s talent watching him sing covers on Season 15.

Just weeks after his elimination aired, he released a 12-song album featuring a sound that’s an interesting mix of rock, jazz and blues.

At age 16, no less. Heck, he was only 15 when he auditioned.

Anthony told Voice Views he wrote and arranged all the tracks on “Going to California,” his debut album.

In fact, they were completed and ready to record before he stepped foot on the blind audition stage.

Well, with one exception. “Slow Train,” the second song on the album, was inspired by fellow contestant Emily Hough, now Anthony’s girlfriend.

As for the title track, Anthony was already in California. His home is Santa Cruz.

But he says the song “Going to California” was inspired by his interest in Route 66 and stories he’d heard about the historic highway.

“After going to The Voice, it took on a new meaning and I decided to make it the title track,” he said. “People continue to go to California to follow their dreams.”

At shows, one of the favorite songs from the album among fans is the funky “Apartment 713,” Anthony says.

“One day in San Francisco I saw an advertisement at a bus stop with an interesting slogan: ‘The women in Apartment 713 are irresistibly charming,'” Anthony recalls. “I thought it was interesting and wrote it down.

“Later on, a song formed around this phrase. I combined it with stories my mom told me about her days in North Beach going to the blues clubs with all her friends. Along with that, I added in my own experiences busking at Caffe Trieste — an old beatnik stop.”

Prior to The Voice, Anthony said he’d usually perform alone, singer-songwriter style. Since the show, a priority — in addition to releasing the album — has been to develop a core band to give his songs a bigger sound.”

You can check out lots of his live performances on his YouTube page and he has two more shows scheduled before the end of the year, including a Dec. 30 date in the Santa Cruz area with Emily.

As for the album, I’ve embedded “Going to California” below. Here’s the link for Apple Music. Be sure to check it out, especially the songs “Smooth Cat” and “Isn’t It Cold in Minnesota.”

On The Voice, Anthony landed a spot on Team Adam Levine with his blind audition performance of “Danny’s Song” by Kenny Loggins.

He wound up being stolen by Jennifer Hudson in the battle round and advanced as far as the knockouts, where he was pitted against eventual finalist Kennedy Holmes.

Here’s “Going to California.”

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