Kaya Stewart made a big impact with her breakthrough single ‘In Love With A Boy’and her self-titled debut album, becoming the youngest female artist to perform on the infamous Warped Tour.
Now Kaya is back with an edgier alt-pop sound, expressed in her latest single ‘California’ featuring Childish Major, the rapper who released his debut album ‘Dirt Road Diamond’ last year and who has previously collaborated with J. Cole.
Kaya wrote the song in Nashville with neo-soul talent and former Warp Records artist Jamie Lidell.
Kaya says, “I felt like California was going to be the answer to all my problems at that time in my life, it was going to be the move that changed everything for me. But the song turned into a metaphor for that moment in your life where you think, ‘If I could just fix this, I’d get my life in order.’ It’s about having to face what’s going on and being able to accept what your real problems are.”
Born in London but raised in Los Angeles, Kaya Stewart grew up surrounded by music. In her earlier years, her father former Eurythmics frontman and producer extraordinaire Dave Stewart, was a major influence. Kaya was writing songs by the age of six and had made her impression on Los Angeles’ live music scene by her early teens.
Now she’s constantly exploring and redefining what it means to be a pop artist in today’s world – especially one which is currently filled with so much uncertainty. As she concludes, “There was never a moment of ‘Oh, this is what I want to do.’ It’s always just been a part of who I am.”
Here, Kaya reveals the music that has influenced her to Andy Howells
What was the first song that made an impact on you?
‘Isn’t She Lovely’ by Stevie Wonder. I always say that song sounds like what happy feels like…
What was the first single /download you bought?
The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill! My mom had her CD in her car and I would listen to it almost every day. The second I got my iPod that was the first thing I downloaded!
What was the first album you owned?
I bought myself The Black Keys ’Brothers’ album on vinyl!
What’s your constant go to track?
I love new music so it changes every day!! But I always have Amy Winehouse in my playlist somewhere!
What’s your constant go to album?
The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill. Always.
Who’s your latest music discovery?
Jack Harlow!! I’m obsessed with ‘River Road’…
What’s your own track that best defines you as an artist?
It’s a track that hasn’t come out yet. I always feel like the most recent thing that I write is what best defines me because I’m always writing about how I feel in that moment.