SHE’S developed her craft performing as Justin Timberlake’s back-up singer for the last two years.
And now Zenya Bashford is launching her own solo career, her sights set on becoming the Hunter’s next superstar.
The Beresfield product began filming her first music video in Newcastle at the weekend for her new single Freedom in a Kiss which will feature on her E.P Artuvnoize: Volume 1.
Some of the set locations include Longbench café in Darby Street, King Edward Park and even Paterson, with local talent being utilised both on screen and off.
“Even though I’ve been all around the world with JT, I’ve come back to Newcastle to film because it’s where I’ve come from,” said Bashford, who turns 31 on Monday.
“I want to show off the beautiful sights here in the Hunter Valley.
“Newcastle is going to have their own singer/songwriter to be proud of, just like they are proud Silverchair and Jennifer Hawkins.”
Bashford has already experienced the downside to fame.
Last year gossip magazines published photos of her and Timberlake talking at a party, alleging the pair were “all over each other”.
Timberlake is married and expecting a child with actress Jessica Biel while Bashford married to American producer Krunk-a-delic in January.
“We were just having a laugh at a friend’s birthday party it wasn’t anything,” Bashford said of the photos, adding that Timberlake sued for defamation.
Bashford (her real name is Cassandra but she performs under Zenya, her late mother’s name) explained it had taken a lot of hard work to get where she is today.
She moved to America in 2008 to pursue her dream and in 2010 her mother, her support and inspiration, died of a brain tumour.
Bashford got her break when she began working as a back-up singer for Timberlake two years ago.
She has also shared the stage with Jay Z, Demi Lovato, Shaggy and Boyz II Men.
But she still wants to achieve more.
“Being a background singer, it’s definitely a steppingstone toward my dream,” she said.
“Freedom in a Kiss, the song I have right now is EDM, but I’m a pop artist – I can do all types of genres including rock, RnB and soul.”
For more information visit facebook.com/welcometozenya or follow @MissZenya on Twitter or Instagram.