It’s All Coming Up Nia
The R&B singer talks her forthcoming album, finding her sound and what’s in store for her next in this exclusive V interview.
If you don’t know the name Nia, now is the time to get familiar. The 23-year-old singer is only on the come-up—with an infectiously charismatic personality, powerful R&B vocals backed by smooth beats and a fashionable aesthetic sweet as bubblegum, it’s no question at all as to why.
In 2019, Nia’s debut EP, Only One, dropped with Baddie Records; Nia was still putting herself through Parsons in New York, studying fashion at the time, creating a name and image for herself in the scene.
“I was really grinding!” she recalls. “I was i the middle of trying to find myself, trying to figure out who I am and just doing music on the side. With the pandemic, everything stopped; it gave me the opportunity to sit and reflect, and it gave me the flexibility to try different sounds and try things that I might’ve not tried before.”
With an estimated hundred demos from the time period under her belt and a handful of singles up her sleeve, it’s clear as day that the search for a sound came to fruition for Nia. She’s a seamless fit into the world of Summer Walkers and SZAs and Lauryn Hills, a smooth-as-cocoa-butter product inspired by the days of Aaliyah and Gwen Stefani.
“I get scared telling people what my sound is right now, because I feel like I don’t know what it is,” Nia says—but a lack of words to put a the melding fusion of R&B and soulful pop to a description speaks more to the fluidity and vastness of her range than anything.
“I get bored really fast, so my sound is constantly going to change, but that’s just what life is like when you grow. But I would say, for [my debut album], it is very much going to be an R&B pop album that has a lot of rap undertones, a lot of that playfulness of rap.”
Angelz is expected in spring 2022, a follow-up to the Only One EP, a cataclysmic fusion of four dynamic, evocative tracks exploring themes of love and heartbreak.
Nia’s most recent drop, though, is “Diamonds,” a single that harnesses the powerful vocals of the singer, aching for a remix track with the Dojas and Megs of the world all over it.
“I’d had no luck in love at all [when I wrote “Diamonds”],” says Nia. “I was like, you know what? None of that matters, though, because at the end of the day, it’s really a feel-good track. At the end of the day, eff love, I have something here with the music, and I’m growing and finding myself, and that’s more valuable to me than settling for less and dealing with BS. To me, ‘Diamonds’ is my version of success, it’s manifesting where I see myself wanting to go.”
Listening to Nia’s music, scrolling through her feed, even being in conversation with her, one thing is clear: her aura is contagious, a pool of self-love and personal confidence and good energy with limitless depths.
Nia makes music you want to dance to, you want to sing to, you want to soundtrack your 20s to. “I just love listening to music that makes you feel good and like you’re happy,” she says, citing Stefani and Aaliyah as artists who do that for her, perhaps unaware she is amongst their ranks.
So, what’s next for the rising star? Angelz, for one—beyond that, anything.
“Angelz is very honest, I’m going to be very transparent,” she says. “It’s the boldest thing I’ve ever done—it’s just so truthful, it’s not sugarcoating anything. I had to give it to y’all because life is super hard [with modern social media and the pandemic], and you would think that people don’t care, but they do. I wish I could give everyone a hug, ‘cause we all need it.”