Some artists capture that glow that takes us back to what music is really about – a time where we knew the artist. The person held our interest in regards to the delivery of their craft and eventual legendary status quo.
Then, we fell for the music first. Today, we fall for the person. In the midst, the determining factor of keeping the love strong is the combination of the person and their creative gift.
“I enjoy those artists that focus more on their music and not so much on how they look physically,” states emerging neo-soul songstress Kamedah.
The fresh 21-year-old, who’s signed to Chicago-based Infusion Music Group, admires artists such as the jazzy-soul allure of Corrine Bailey Rae, the take-me-as-I-am soulful strength of India Arie, and the hold you down sensuality of Alicia Keys mixed with Adele’s lyrical sass.
“They make music. They make good music. And that’s all that matters,” the Roswell, Georgia native observes. Kamedah’s vision as a singer-songwriter is to tell stories and bring forth life as she sees it.
During a recent trip to Chicago, the up-and-coming talent’s schedule was filled with meet-and-greets as she prepares for her debut album, due out in 2013 with the first single, Don’t Act Like, hitting air waves sooner than later.
The shy Georgia gal admits, “It’s a little overwhelming. I’m just trying to keep from freaking out!”
Kamedah’s musical existence came to be because of her grandparents, who were political refugees in Zimbabwe.
She says, “Music kind of brought us here! My grandparents are from Zimbabwe and they were political refugees. What helped them get to the United States is that my grandfather was in a singing group that got to the U.S., and they got my family over here. My mom was the first one born here.”
Knowing the roots of her musical history gets heavy consideration when Kamedah creates her music.
“It makes me think about what I write and the way that I say it,” she says, adding, “really being honest and making sure that when I make music it’s something that I’m proud of and my family will be proud of.”
Recognizing her voice for song when she was 11, Kamedah’s interest shifted from performing punk rock to exploring full acoustic, to country, and then landed comfortably in neo-soul.
“I really love country music and soul is kind of like a jazzier version of country music to me,” the singer begins. “There’s a story. It’s all about the story and every song means something.”
One her personal favorites is her recorded track, High Alert. “That pretty much has the most raw emotion of any of my songs. It’s pretty straight-forward, not a lot of frilly stuff on it.”
Soul music is about making you feel something and being honest with your emotions and experiences. It’s not always pretty. But it’s always real.
“I’ve always just been drawn to the way people express how they feel. It’s not always happy. It’s not dance music. It’s not just something to make you feel good; it’s something to make you think and feel a certain way.”
Also talented on the guitar, to date, Kamedah has penned over 100 songs and writes as situations and scenarios come to mind.
She smiles through the phone, “My creative process isn’t really all that intricate really. I may think about a time where something made me feel a certain way and I’ll write about that.”
Kamedah is big on becoming a lyricist and establishing her sound by allowing the world to hear her voice and take in the lyrics she pens.
As Kamedah prepares for the release of her debut album, she notes that she’s still filling out the full direction of the project. “I get into these writing phases where I’ll write one way for a little bit and then decide I need to change it and I’ll completely flip it!”
She’s teamed up with Atlanta-based producer Travon Motts (Monica, Christina Aguilera), which she is excited about, but also realizes the “double-pressure.”
I’ve stated before that music houses a universal language and produces life’s soundtrack. We’re all introduced to it in various ways and through moment-stamping experiences.
In the prepping stages of a first album, there aren’t many who have the chance to fully be themselves without having to fight with their label. Not so much the case for Kamedah. While some artists have little to zero artistic liberty, the audience actually gets to hear lyrics written by Miss Kamedah.
Is she nervous? Of course. But is it worth it? Absolutely.
“I’m not very verbally expressive,” she smirks. “So, it kind of made me nervous just to kind of put myself out there like that, but at the same time it was freeing.
“I’m pretty quiet. I’m a solitary person, which is probably why I’m drawn to music so much … my songs are pretty much my babies.”
If you really want to get to know Kamedah, listen to her music. Take in her lyrics. Close your eyes and vibe as her fingers collide with the strings of her guitar and intertwine with her vocals. They lead to her growing soul.
(Visit www.infusionmusicgroup.com for more on KAMEDAH’s music!)