Artist to Watch: Kamaiyah

BY TYLER HOYLE

Up and coming Oakland rapper Kamaiyah has made quite a stir this summer. Since her debut mixtape, A Good Night in the Ghetto was released in mid March, Kamaiyah has been getting national recognition across the music industry. Featured on the hit Why You Always Hatin? by YG and Drake,  many of you probably have Kamaiyah on your summer 2016 playlist without realizing it.

Kamaiyah is a newcomer to the music business yet everything about her is organic and refreshing. She is not shy about admitting that she comes from the hood, and rapping is her means of creating her own liberation. A Good Night in the Ghetto has the perfect mixture of contemporary love ballads, lit bangers and reflective testimonies. 

With lyrics like “Big fur, big Chains in the coldest weather/ Air Nike’s, Fresh J’s we don’t own Margiela’s,” Kamaiyah stays true to the 90s ghetto fabulous style and pokes fun of the modern high- fashion rappers. There is something inherently modern about a woman MC rapping about being satisfied without a man, living life according to your own standards, being goofy and having confidence in oneself - all while casually sipping a bottle of Hennesy to the face.

There are a number of notable Bay Area producer credits on the mixtape (P Lo & 1-O.A.K). One probably does not have to be a Bay Area music expert to spot out the hyphy influences in the beats & lyrics of each song. Hyphy is more than a music genre. It is a movement - a lifestyle specific to Bay Area culture. While Kamaiyah undoubtedly embodies that hyphy mentality of having fun and going dumb, she also represents a new wave of Hip Hop. Kamaiyah is Post-Hyphy.  

It is incredible. In a society of photo copies, Kamaiyah's music is distinct and honest. This mixtape is one you play when you wake up in the morning and listen to get you through your day. My prediction: Kamaiyah is paving the way to become the First Lady of the West Coast rap scene and I would not wait to jump on the bandwagon. 

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