Idayja, Newark's latest upcoming artist, delivers her debut single, "Like Me", saluting to every facet of woman empowerment, self-worth and certified bad bitch energy. The 24-year-old songwriter, singer and rapper is breaking through the barriers of the industry with her eccentric energizing sound and pours positivity into the lives of her listeners with each published project.
In July 2019, Idayja performed her single at Montclair's The Best Of Essex event which sparked her journey towards collaborations and more creative content. Her playful verses in "Bubbles", "Órale Vato", and "No Nonsense" scratches the surface of what has yet to come.
"Like Me" carries the essence of a girl-power anthem, reminding any man or woman that the value of your worth should be celebrated and honored. To be one of a kind in your own special space of self-love is the ingredient of encouragement in Idayja's formula of artistry.
In our interview, she dives into the creative process of her 2019 single, how she feels about the representation of women in the industry, her path with music and so much more. Take a look at her responses down below:
Q1: How did "Like Me" come to life?
Idayja: "Like Me was about my ex from 4 years ago who cheated on me. He was the first person I thought I was in love with. The song is [dedicated] for anybody who knows their worth and know that they are special."
Q2: "What kind of artist would you classify yourself as?"
Idayja: "I was literally talking about that with friends and I don't know what genre to put myself in. I've been doing music for a year and I'm still figuring out what direction to go with my music. I love me some soul, rap, trap, and R&B. For now, I call myself a performer, and I don't ever want to put myself in a [specific] lane and to be categorized yet."
Q3: "What does your creative process look like?"
Idayja: "First, I always have to hear a beat. Every song I first start writing, I go to the bathroom with my phone and start creating beats and coming up with some harmonies. Depending upon how I'm feeling, or if I'm watching something, I'll just come up with a bar and be like 'Ooouu, I like that' and I'll jot it down. It's so weird but it's just that the bathroom is my safe space."
There's no judgement in this media corner. She continues by stating that, during her process of writing her verse for Tynnelle's "Orale Vato", she created her verse under pressure on her way to the artists studio.
"I feel like when I'm under pressure, my work shows more. With my soulful songs, it could take me like less than an hour," she said.
With her quick, hard-hitting rap verses, she also obtains the talent to lay down silky vocals to accompany the music she produces with other artists.
When we asked her about who resides in her roster of dream collaborations, Idayja enthusiastically mentions honorable names such as Beyoncé, Jhené Aiko, SZA, Megan Thee Stallion, and Queen Latifah. For her male dream collab line, she included DaBaby, Drake and Logic.
Q4: Who inspired you from the past and who continues to inspire you musically today?
Idayja: "Definitely TheGhostJay. When he heard my song, "Like Me", he was like, "Oh Shit, you're actually gonna do this, you need to do this." Shoutout to J.1.DA, he gave me connections. I didn't know there were mad studios in Bloomfield and I wouldn't have met a lot of people. I wouldn't have met Samad Savage, who makes all my beats."
Q5: "How do you feel about the representation of female musicians in the industry today?"
Idayja: "Honestly, there's so much controversy on how women dress, talk and look, and I feel like if you don't like it, just stay away from it. People need to learn how to mind their business and stay out of people's ear. There is a difference between saying, 'Hey, that's not good' and telling somebody you can't do something because that is not their place. All the women who's out here doing their thing, thats for them and it's making them happy and feeding their family."
Currently, she is in the process of releasing her deliciously explicit single titled, "Ratchet $hit", which will drop in early September. A different version of the EP will feature artist, RayKatanna. You can find her upcoming launch on Spotify, Apple Music and other streaming platforms.
Be sure to follow her Instagram, @idayja to keep up with the latest releases and sneak peeks into future projects! In addition to Idayja's final thoughts during the interview, she would like to emphasis this public service announcement to anyone who has something to say about women in the industry: MIND. YOUR. BUSINESS.
Written by: Tasha Dowbachuk