EMPOWERMENT THROUGH MUSIC
Lizzo and her music bring a wave of confidence into the lives of her many listeners usually make us feel pretty good about ourselves. Lizzo’s music is filled with themes of empowerment and living your best life. These are five artists you’ll adore if you love Lizzo, R&B, and a sense of self-assurance.
Kanda is a Congolese-American singer-songwriter, model, and artist. She grew up in Boise, Idaho, but later moved to Portland where she studied music at Portland State University and graduated with a degree in vocal jazz. Her main focus in all the art she partakes in displays plus-sized, black, femme in its many aspects in order to be the representation that others might not have had before her.
Jane Chika Oranika is a 23-year-old black, bisexual rapper that goes by the name CHIKA. She was born to Nigerian immigrants and raised in Montgomery, Alabama. On April 26, 2018, CHIKA went viral after posting a video on twitter of a freestyle rap verse calling Kanye West’s for supporting Donald Trump over his own “Jesus Walks” beat. CHIKA eventually got the opportunity to perform “Richey v. Alabama,” a freestyle about anti-abortion legislation passed in her home state, during an episode of Jimmy Kimmel Live. The artist has also collaborated with other musicians like Kesha and Sage. CHIKA can go from incorporating socially conscious lyrics in her music to singing about love like on her song “Can’t Explain It”
Check out CHIKA’s music on Spotify.
Jill Scott is a three-time Grammy-winning American singer-songwriter, model, poet, and actress. She began her career as a spoken word artist, performing at live poetry readings. Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson came across Scott and invited her to join “ The Roots” in the studio which resulted in a collaboration that credited Scott as a co-writer on the song, “You Got Me”.Her 2000 debut album, Who Is Jill Scott? Words and Sounds Vol. 1, went platinum along with her follow-up albums which both achieved gold status. She’s known for her popular songs such as “So In Love”, “A Long Walk”, and “The Way. Jill Scott is essentially a poetic R&B artiste who handles slow rich anthems of pride and empowerment.
You can listen to Jill Scott on Spotify.
Kyshona is a Nashville-based singer-songwriter. She began as a music therapist who worked in mental health hospitals and correctional facilities, but then she started writing music with her patients and used it as a way to redirect behaviors and emotions. According to her website her sound is described as “Kyshona blending roots, rock, R&B, and folk with lyrical prowess to uplift the marginalized and bring awareness to the masses. It’s for every silent scream, every heavy load, every fearful thought, and the simmering sense of anger that the silenced, the lost, and the forgotten try to hide from the world”.
Killeen, Texas resident, Rose Short, was a finalist on NBC’s “The Voice”. According to her NBC bio, Rose started singing when she was 5 years old and often performed at community events on the base in Germany where her father was stationed. Her family eventually moved to Texas, where she became involved in choir and theater. Rose worked as a corrections officer for eight years, but ultimately quit to focus on music again. Three months after coming in fourth place on “ The Voice”, Rose continues to pursue her dreams as a full-time musician. Rose released her first original song “ Push Me” On May 1st, 2020.
Check out Rose on Spotify.
All these talented female musicians manage to spread their message using powerful and beautiful lyrics and it’s important to not only recognize them as musicians but also acknowledge other plus-sized artists who put themselves out there. Just like how Lizzo received recognition and success, these women deserve the same.