Yebba's Journey From 'My Mind' To Her New Album 'Dawn' : It's Been a Minute with Sam Sanders It was 2016, and Yebba's career was beginning to take off. But 2016 was also the year that something awful happened: Yebba's mother committed suicide. And that changed everything, too.

Now, after years of collaborating with artists the likes of Sam Smith, PJ Morton and Robert Glasper, Yebba has her own standalone album. It's called Dawn, a reference to her mother's name. In this chat, Yebba and Sam talk about the emotional toll it took to make Dawn, growing up in the church, and shedding old beliefs while making room for new ones.

Yebba Sheds Old Beliefs With A New Album

Yebba Sheds Old Beliefs With A New Album

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Yebba's debut album is called Dawn. Francesco Carrozzini /RCA Records hide caption

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Francesco Carrozzini /RCA Records

Yebba's debut album is called Dawn.

Francesco Carrozzini /RCA Records

It was 2016 and Yebba's career was beginning to take off. That year, she sang back-up for Chance the Rapper on Saturday Night Live. And a performance she did at an intimate venue in New York went viral on YouTube, catching the eye (and ear) of Ed Sheeran, whom she would eventually collaborate with on the song "Best Part of Me." But 2016 was also the year that something awful happened: Yebba's mother committed suicide shortly after that performance. And that changed everything, too.

Now, after years of collaborating with artists the likes of Sam Smith, PJ Morton and Robert Glasper. Yebba has her own standalone album. It's called Dawn, a reference to her mother's name. In this chat, Yebba and Sam talk about the emotional toll it took to make Dawn, growing up in the church, and shedding old beliefs while making room for new ones.

This episode of 'It's Been a Minute' was produced by Jinae West and edited by Jordana Hochamn. We had engineering support from Kwesi Lee. You can follow us on Twitter @NPRItsBeenAMin and email us at samsanders@npr.org.