MALAIKA – How To Explore The Sounds Of Jazz, Soul And Pop
There she stands, at a distance, and glancing at the idea of writing a new song
As her thoughts are running quite as fast as the one that she’s crazy about,
Heart has stopped beating, while he wouldn’t Stop For A Minute for her.
Red lips, pink fur and voice as sweet as honey bee,
The bittersweet young lady doesn’t feel too well, doesn’t feel the same
So all of her emotions you can hear and testify when she rises again her voice
With a taste of Jazz and Soul, and Pop.
Her name is Malaika (Born Malaika Shaw), Best Jazz/Blues artist Unsigned Music Awards winner, from UK (Leeds) and Northern Ireland (Bangor).
Since she’s 16, she’s been studying and understand the language of Jazz Music fused with Soul under the tutelage of Trevor England, in Bangor.
Then settled in Leeds, she got into the music scene playing underground venues such as Verve, Sela Bar and Wharf Chambers, all while studying for her BA in Popular Music.
Multi-instrumentalist, songwriter and performer, she tends to explore all the ways to combine Jazz and Soul with Pop Music.
You can appreciate this blend in her sound, and notice the hints of Jazz through her guitar chords and vocal harmonies, when she plays acoustic.
The softness of her voice creates the Soulful vibe.
Her songwriting is so soft and mellow, as you listen to the lead and back vocals, you could picture all the artists’ vulnerabilities and fragility.
Jazz is definitely in Malaika’s DNA, yet she’s approaching more the sides of Popular Music, giving a brand new shape to her craft and artistry, getting more mature.
Indeed, over the modern time productions she uses, with the catchy drum beats, the samples of wind instrument (flute, and trumpet), and the back vocals harmonies, smooth, soothing and mesmerizing, offer a fair compromise of Pop and Jazz.
Tracks like Stop For A Minute shows off an excellent work of creativity. All the rhytmic variations and the vocal transitions make it catchy at its best.
What is more, visually she picks the codes and references of what we all generally know from Jazz and Soul: class and cosy places, retro hair style, fur and dress like in the 60’s, and makes it look fresh and contemporary.
Her style and sound in Don’t Feel The Same recalls Corinne Bailey Rae, which is not by chance, as Malaika’s written 2 songs in collaboration with Grammy nominated songwriter, John Beck, famous for his No.1 hit “Put Your Records On” with Corrine Bailey Rae, a single still very popular and revisited by numerous artists, even 10 years later.
Back in time, Malaika self-released her first single “Call Me Honey” which accelerated Malaika’s exposure and within her first year she had received airplay on Huw Stephens BBC Radio 1, supported X Factor Finalist Luke Friend and has been hand picked by Jamie Calum to perform at The Montreal International Jazz Festival 2015.
She even supported Akua Naru.
Now 2017 looks to be an extremely pivotal year for Malaika. With the launch of her first official single, Stop For A Minute, and her debut official video for Don’t Feel The Same.
The singer, songwriter and also model keeps making it big.