The first Kali Uchis’ song I ever heard was, “Know What I Want” off her EP Por Vida (2005). After the initial listen I replayed it (and rewatched the music video) about a dozen time in a row. Completely charmed with her ultra feminine aesthetic – winged-out eyeliner, over lined lips and colorful Go-go dancer inspired mini dresses – I was an instant fan. Her music videos are always dreamy short films full of fashion statements, color, and candied melodies that pave the yellow brick road to Kali Uchis’ fantasy world. Since those early music videos days the singer-songwriters has only continued to outdo herself as a creative and musical artist.
Born in Pereira, Colombia but raised in Alexandria, Virginia Uchis’ work is often a representation of those two worlds coming together. And you can always count on her to rep her Colombian roots – often including snippets of her home country in music videos like, “Ridin Round”. Uchis often self-directs her music videos and has never been one to shy away from taking creative control of her projects. In an interview with MTV News when explaining why creative control over her music is important she states, “I have to have control […], just because otherwise it can take any form, it can take any direction and I don’t want it to be misrepresentative of me.” And when she is not taking a seat in the director’s chair she makes sure to partner up with some of the industry’s most innovative artists and creatives. In the past Uchis has collaborated with Nadia Lee Cohen, photographer and filmmaker, for the project 50 Ways To Leave Your Lover and most recently for her music video,”After The Storm” off her debut album, Isolation (2018), for compelling visuals that match and bolster Uchis’ well known aesthetic.
Upon the release of Isolation earlier this month, Uchis work was quickly lauded by both fans and critics. Featuring artists like girl crush Jorja Smith, rapper Tyler, The Creator – a frequent collaborator, and musician Steve Lacy from The Internet the album is truly a treat for your ears. Nearing a million followers on Instagram and over 430k on twitter, Kali Uchis has created a loyal and devoted fan base for herself. I mean, even the Gorillaz are fans. So do yourself a favor this weekend and listen to Isolation or catch Kali Uchis live this summer right here.