Writing since she was eight while listening to the likes of the biggest in the music game from Erykah Badu and Lauryn Hill, the future is bright for Mahalia.
Mahalia Burkmar, known as Mahalia, is an English singer-songwriter and actress from Leicester.
Penning her first song at the age of eight and signing a deal with major record label, Atlantic Records at thirteen, it’s clear that music plays an incredibly poignant part in Mahalia’s life.
Her soul-pop sound attracts over 1.7 monthly listeners on Spotify and she has nabbed the top spot for YouTube’s 2019 One to Watch Award.
She has also toured with Ed Sheeran and has collaborated with Nineteen85, the producer behind Drake’s unforgettable yet iconic, ‘Hotline Bling’.
From the moment you listen to a Mahalia track you can feel her deeply personal and observational lyricism, as if it has been taken straight from her diary.
Here are just three Mahalia tunes you need to add to your playlist.
Already amassing over 11 million streams, ‘Sober’ is Mahalia’s breakthrough single detailing her tendency to drunk-dial her ex. In fact, she actually wrote the song while she was tipsy and trying to stay away from her phone.
“When I was writing it, I definitely didn’t think that everyone’s going to relate to this.
“It had my weird melodies and lyrics and that R&B feel that I knew I loved, but couldn’t find on the guitar alone,” she told BBC.
‘Do Not Disturb’ is her most current single where she sings of shutting down needy texts from a persistent boyfriend to create some time to herself.
“With phones, everybody always has access to you.
“And it’s really difficult to deal with, especially when you’re trying to get over somebody and they call or text or email or send a DM,” she told BBC.
One of her most cherished songs, ‘Proud of Me’ is Mahalia reflecting on her childhood in Leicester, the people that surrounded her and supported her dreams as she was growing up. Music is something that has always circulated around her family abode, as she tried to imitate her father’s guitar skills.
‘Proud of Me’ isn’t just about Mahalia reflecting on her past experiences but it is also about cementing her mature position when it comes to the fame that comes along with music which you can hear ring through the lyrics.
“I wanna keep bits of me to myself, I don’t need your publicity all up in my business, that right there is a sickness.”
Go get some more of Mahalia’s beautiful, soulful voice on Soundcloud.