We caught up with singer and songwriter, Iyamah, to talk about her new single Cake. A babe on the rise, she grew up in Brighton before moving to London to pursue her music career. Her iconic voice and genre-defying tunes have helped her create huge waves in the music industry. We chatted about dream collaborations, her proudest moments and what’s on the agenda for the new year.
Listen to the dreamy acoustic version of Cake below…
Tell us a little bit about your new single Cake…
It’s just a little reminder of your worth. We’ve all been there when someone’s tryna have the cake before they’ve put in effort into it, saying all these words but then not showing it with actions!
This guy was giving me mixed messages and I’d had enough. I like to know what’s going on, it’s disrespectful to keep someone waiting. My time is very important… and I don’t give it out easily. I think if the guy is unsure about how they feel then you should walk away immediately. I hope girls will feel more empowered to do what’s right for them after listening to my music.
What piece of music have you been most proud of so far & why?
Probably Cryptic Love because of how it was written so spontaneously in the moment, it just flowed out and everyone in the room was totally connected to it. We ended up releasing the demo vocals we did on the day we wrote it and it’s resonated with so many people. That was the first song I released.
For someone who may be new to your music, can you introduce your sound?
My music is a combination of all the genres that inspired me growing up I guess. My mum played a lot of reggae and world music around the house, then I started singing r&b and soul, then when I was a teenager there was a lot of dub, jungle and drum&bass around Brighton, then I was drawn more towards hiphop and neo-soul when I was a bit older. I call it ‘Rootsy Soul’.
If you didn’t become a musician, what would you be doing instead?
I loved running, I was always a really fast sprinter in school, so maybe athletics.. or dance. I loved acting too, so any of those!
How do you like to spend your days off?
I’ve got a home studio, so I’m always writing, finishing songs off or getting new inspiration. Whether that’s discovering new music or listening back to old stuff. Sometimes I need a break from music though, so I’ll exercise, go for a walk or see friends!
If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?
Many things! It’s so hard for artists to survive without having some kind of investor or label backing them. And not feeling stable or grounded has a massive strain on mental health issues, especially if they’re having to work part-time and haven’t got the energy in their spare time to be creative. There needs to be more support for artists in my opinion, but it’s cool that mental health has become such a big topic now.
What were your favourite teenage albums?
Kanye west – Late Registration
Beyoncé – B’day
The Black Eyed Peas – Monkey Business
Alicia Keys – The Element Of Freedom
What types of night out are your favourite?
I just love to be able to dance all evening! I don’t do it enough anymore, but dancing is my favourite thing to do with friends. It’s something everyone should do, it’s so good for you! A pub with a great live band is all I need.
Who’s your dream collaboration and why?
I mean are we talking dream DREAM? Then probably Alicia keys or Jill Scott. Or Q-tip.. that would be insane.
Who’s your style inspiration?
Probably someone like Zoe Kravitz or Solange. They’re both very cool with great braid inspo!
What’s coming up on the agenda?
More songs, videos, shows, hopefully a tour.. I’m saying 2020 is THE year!
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