This month’s R&B uncovered is taking a look at some of the ladies making great contributions to the UK R&B scene. So many incredibly talented vocalists are flying the flag for UK R&B. When it comes to delivering vocals, the women in the UK scene are holding it down. Aside from bringing incredible moments with their talents, they are groundbreaking, taking huge strides forward, finding success in an overshadowed space and creating more space for others to do the same. They are leading the way for UK R&B and it’s only right we give them their flowers.
This singer has been making waves for a minute now and she is showing no signs of slowing down. Her sound is a fusion of the sounds she was exposed to growing up. Jazz standards, R&B, Reggae and even funky house are all listed influences of the singer. Amaria BB was born in Jamaica, but moved to Hackney at a young age. Following on from two years of building a presence online, the singer is poised and ready for a successful 2022.
What really standouts about Amaria BB is her lyricism, which she developed doing rewrites in her early stages. Her technical ability is unquestionable, between her soft sultry tone and excellent control her voice is just dreamy. Amaria delivered a banger with “Slow Motion” in 2021. Her EP What’s Done in the Dark, truly showcases her range of ability, her artistic dexterity and her genre-fusing experimentation. In terms of alternative fusion R&B, Amaria BB is ticking so many boxes.
If you know UK R&B then Sasha Keable should be a name you recognise. Sasha graced the world with her warm, rich and soulful vocals on Disclosure’s “Voices” in 2013. Later that year she released her Black Book EP which was a just small glimpse at the singer’s songwriting ability and sound. Her back catalogue is filled with gems. Her 2014 project Lemongrass and Lime Leaves was even more experimental and demonstrated new depths to her sound. With additional singles that followed, with each release Sasha delivered a different experience.
During the early stages of her career, she established herself as a versatile, dynamic vocalist. She clearly spends time crafting her art. Anticipation in her fan community is always building between releases. Last year she collaborated with Jorja Smith on the song “Killing Me” taken from her latest body of work Intermission.
As far as female R&B collaborations you can’t go wrong with this track. Beautifully intricate harmonies, vulnerable yet strong lyrics, a dramatic, intense and an utterly glamorous video. Sasha’s sound is very distinct and modern whilst still maintaining a classic feel. Her latest project Intermission dropped late last year. The project is one to take in, breathtaking, vocally outstanding and incredibly emotionally vulnerable.
This Birmingham songstress is undoubtedly one to watch this year. Indigo Marshall is a standout talent from the city at the moment. Her tracks have been a favourite on BBC Introducing playlists, as well as Target’s Notice board. Indigo really hit the promotional trail during the lockdown, with her single “Distractions”. Showcasing her flawless vocals on IG lives in the same time, she gained heavy praise from respected creatives like SBTV and Kenny Burns.
Following on from a few solid years of creative development and single releases Indigo has blessed us with her incredible debut EP The Fall. To create the soulful and unique sound Indigo worked alongside producer Gifted, who executive produced the entire project as well as being on the beat production of “Questions” and “Figure It Out”. Gifted’s credits include the likes of Giggs, Lil Simz and Lady Leshurr to name a few, so there is no doubt that his finesse adds to the magnitude of sound in this project.
“Paris” is definitely a standout of this project with the sparse production shining a spotlight on Indigo’s incredible voice. The track has a very unique neo-jazz element, which is delivered exceptionally. Her vocal is equally as awe-inducing on stage as it is in the booth, which fans can experience at her headline show in Birmingham this month.
If Raheaven isn’t a name you know, then you should definitely get to know. Raheaven has been around for a minute, but we have been seeing a lot more of her in the past few years. After teasing at a project on IG for what felt like an eternity, Raheaven dropped her incredible 2 Personal EP in March of 2021. The singer went on to gift us with another stunning single “Talk Back” in 2021.
Her impressive and eclectic discography just keeps growing with her latest offering “Touch It” alongside July 7 released earlier this year. Raheaven is bringing a fresh perspective to the sound of UK R&B, a unique fusion of sounds woven together with her stunning vocals.
While her vocal style and performance stay very true to the genre, her beat selection encompasses much more. With influences from her Eritrean heritage giving her sound a unique and distinctive edge. Her latest offering was produced by Wuave, who has a wavy R&B infused sound of his own. Raheaven has a few releases to get into, but “Touch It” is the latest and it’s a vibe.
Mahalia is a name that perhaps goes without saying, but she deserves the plaudits nonetheless. She is one of the trailblazers of the UK R&B scene. Mahalia’s style and sound has created pathways in modern UK R&B, her success and career is one that many aspiring artists take inspiration from. Forging her own path, breaking barriers and defying stereotypes, Mahalia has stayed unapologetically authentic to the core. She continuously develops her sound without a hint of dilution.
Simultaneously, she is always evolving into an artist with masses of crossover appeal. She is definitely a pioneer in modern UK R&B and uses her voice and her platform to elevate the space, just another of the many reasons she is one of the Queens of this.
This year sees Mahalia establishing herself further, with massive brand collabs and her first tour back since lockdown. She is known for creating an intimate live experience no matter the size of the crowd, with each show having many personal elements thrown in. She truly engages her fans and this tour will surely be no different as she hits the road to share the incredible music she has given us over the last two years.
In case you missed our last instalement of UK RnB Uncovered, be sure to check it out right here.