One To Watch: Kamaiyah

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Oakland has been a breeding ground for some of the biggest and most consistent musicians in the realm of R&B and Hip Hop. Renowned acts like Keyshia Cole and artists just finding their feet such as Grammy nominated Kehlani have continued to prove that California most definitely has it, beyond the conventional territories such as Los Angeles. One act looking to extend this legacy is newcomer to the rap game Kamaiyah, who is already causing quite a commotion within the scene as her come up intensifies daily.

Kamaiyah’s rise began during the first quarter of 2016 when her track ‘How Does It Feel became a bona fide radio hit, gaining regular spins on 106 KMEL. Following this, her debut mixtape A Good Night In The Ghetto gained highly favourable reviews on renowned outlets such as Pitchfork and MTV, solidifying her strong arrival, and ability to gain street cred in such a short space of time.


Part of what makes Kamaiyah so intriguing is that she has an edgy but effortless vintage swag, which is so crisp and sharp that her presence is felt instantaneously on any song that she releases. On her mixtape track ‘Mo Money Mo Problems for instance she spits with ice cold confidence; “I ask, know i’m sure i’m the illest little chick you’ve seen this far”, and it’s reminiscent of the femcee self assurance existent in ‘95 for instance. The essence of the 90’s is introduced so smoothly, that it feels almost refreshing hearing her on tracks. It’s only natural that her sources of inspiration include Aaliyah and Missy Elliot.

Kamaiyah isn’t all about the past however, she has a tone and vocal which doesn’t sound so dated that it’s not relatable or contemporary enough. Her animated verses and ability to switch up her tone when necessary make her adaptable to 2016, she’s dynamic which is a crucial quality to survive the turbulent rap scene at present.

Kamaiyah definitely seems like a promising act for the future, and with an Interscope deal already inked, it appears as though she has the industry on her side to ensure a huge roll out for future projects. More power to her!


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