12th November | Exchange
Whether she’s inserting shades of The Cure or showing off her poet stripes, R&B and neo-soul singer, Jamila Woods gives a glittering, golden flair to everything she touches. This is partly due to her curious, intellectual mind: a graduate of the prestigious Ivy League American college, Brown University (where she graduated with a BA in Africana Studies and Theatre Performance), the themes in her lyrics are sprawling and considered. In her two-album discography, she deep dives into Black ancestry, feminism and identity, interwoven with meditations on self-love and life in the US’ second city, Chicago.
If you think you’ve heard her delightfully buttery vocals before, you’re probably not wrong. When she’s not releasing her own tracks, penning poetry or deeply involved in community activism, she’s appeared alongside an array of hip-hop’s most prominent names. She croons the chorus on Donnie Trumpet & The Social Experiment’s (a moniker of Chance The Rapper) ‘Sunday Candy’ and appears on the raucous Biblical praise song, ‘Blessings’ from Chance the Rapper’s blockbuster mixtape Coloring Book, as well as Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’ ‘White Privilege II’. A staple of the Chicago music scene, her albums have included collaborations with noname, Saba and theMIND, among others from this crew of thoughtful, soulful musicians.
Her newest album, Legacy! Legacy! has been met with universal critical acclaim, with each track being a nod to Woods’ icons such as Frida Khalo, Eartha Kitt and Jean-Michel Basquait. She hits Exchange in support of the album – promising a show that’s equally as intricate, pensive and dreamy as the soundscapes of her records.
See the video for ‘Baldwin’ here: