Dull day at the office…well, home office. The COVID-19 pandemic isn’t getting better in this country anytime soon with the restrictions eased.
In one of my breaks I idly open a text by a friend which directs me to a YouTube playlist.
I’m suddenly hooked. Drugged by the powerful vocals of this girl’s voice. She could make you drop your significant other in a whim to listen to her all day. I was repeating the playlist for the second and third time, complaining on the inside that it was too short. At least in my experience.
The powerful vocals belonged to a gorgeous lady who also happens to be an NRG Radio presenter. Enter Kenyan songstress Darya Kish.
The playlist was her debut EP released on Friday July 10. A Decade Ago, the name that described tales of love, betrayal and lust amongst every human being.
Born Michelle Akinyi Darlene, Darya is a Kenyan RnB styled singer/ performer/creative/ musician/ radio presenter and loves to put passion and soul to her music.
In 2018 Darya Kish recorded and released her debut single; ‘No Love’. She later on released ‘Another Attempt’ and her hit single ‘Rush’. The latter track received an overwhelming positive response from across the country, seeing it was her first song that wasn’t of the RnB genre. After the success of her debut effort, Darya Kish went on to release ‘Sikufeel featuring Sir M’ and another single ‘Vibes’ not long after. Her latest project is an EP dubbed A DECADE AGO, released on July 10 as she showed her fans what’s in store for 2020. From the EP, she released a Bonus Track ‘Slow Down Child’ which talks about the hardships in the Kenyan music industry. ‘Slow Down Child’ reflects the depth Darya Kish used in writing all the tracks in her first ever EP “A DECADE AGO”.
She continues to maintain her focus towards music and is working on more projects and collaborations which are to be released during the course of the year.
Style And Steel
Darya Kish’s style of music has been influenced by various artists and genres from all over the world. However, her impeccable ability to write has seen her grow her art of speaking through music by lacing her songs with lyrics that reflect the everyday struggles and triumphs of the youth and other age groups.
An accomplished vocalist and romance poet, Darya Kish uses these two ingredients in her music to speak to her audience, while adding a touch with her vocal riffs and runs between her hard hitting lyrics, to create an unforgettable entertainment value.
ONE ON ONE
Speaking exclusively to 254 News on Friday July 17, a week after her EP’s release, the energetic and bubbly songstress opened up on her remarkable journey so far and how she went from doing American tours at nine years old to being one of the most sought-after RnB artists in the country.
Describe more about the EP
A Decade Ago is an eight track EP in which I managed to put out my emotions in various aspects concerning love. Dominated by the themes of love, betrayal and lust I clearly explained what we go through and expect in love.
Produced at Cityboy Studios, my raspy yet deep voice captures the effects of insecurities felt in “charged up” as I talked about failed love “let your insecurities drive us to nothing”. I wrapped it up with the absence of a lover in their partner’s life and the emotions and thoughts that come with it and the lust that breeds from it in “Vanity” as I sang “but it’s all vanity you are blurring my clarity you know it can’t be because I love him”.
While requesting the total need of my partner in my life in “Simple Things” I emphasized that it needs to be a two way train as I would give in the same way he would give in to me.With hard hitting baselines I delved into the concept of proving the love one has in “Step At A Time” to the pain when one’s lover becomes promiscuous yet acts as the victim in “Give Me A Chance”.
How are you coping with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic?
I mean I think Corona has been crazy for everyone but I’ve been coping and I’ve just been focusing on my EP actually. That’s what I’ve been thinking about you know. As much as there’s so much going on I knew that I needed to out this project. So music-wise it’s not so bad because there’s social media, I mean the events part is the bad part of it. Mainly because I wish I would have a listening party or you know just a launching party for my EP, but I unfortunately wasn’t able to because of Corona. But I’m sure as soon as it ends there’s going to be more opportunities. So far so good, just hoping that everything gets back to normal so that it’s better for other artists too, who actually earn money from events because that really helps fund the craft.
What’s the story behind your singing career? How did you get it off the ground?
No one in my family really sang, so I don’t think anyone saw that coming. However, I started singing from as young as 7 years old. I used to sing this Alicia Keys song “Fallin” every single day without fail and I never stopped singing from then. I went on a music tour in USA when I was 9 years old(when I composed my first song ever). It was a Christian children’s choir and we performed in 4 states. I continued singing and performing throughout primary and highschool, I was even in the praise and worship team for years in school. Once I joined university, I released my first single NO LOVE and that was the beginning of a new journey with my music. I performed in almost every event in university then soon after, started releasing more singles. Most recent being my debut EP.
What do you do apart from making songs?
Apart from making music I am a radio presenter at NRG radio. I do the mid morning show from Monday to Friday 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. It’s called the NRG AM Show and I do it with my co hosts Shaq, Sean and DJ Twinizzle. I love all things to do with fashion and style and makeup one of my hobbies. Dancing too.
How did you become a radio presenter?
In April 2018, I participated in a competition known as the NRG MVPs and emerged as the winner for a radio presenter spot in the company. The competition was quite tough because there were hundreds of talented creatives and I really wanted this job. Seeing that I had been on USIU Radio for almost 3 years and had gone for interviews at a couple of well known radio stations in Kenya but I hadn’t gotten the job yet. However, during MVPS I put my all in it, I did my research and I worked on my strengths and weaknesses and it clearly paid off.
Biggest achievement/challenge so far? How did you learn from it?
I would say that my biggest achievement is releasing my DEBUT EP “A Decade Ago”. It was an amazing process! Stressful too because there’s just so much, 8 songs isn’t a joke. I had to work on them, the releasing, arranging, writing and all. But thank God I had help from City Boy Studios thats where I did EVERYTHING! Recording and everything to do with EP. I could say that there were situations where I didn’t think I would actually release the EP anytime soon, I thought maybe in October or something, but it all paid off you know! I just learnt to be patient and optimistic and just have faith and believe in myself more because I CAN DO IT!
Where do you draw your inspiration from?
My inspiration comes from everything to do with the love and emotions and passion. I’m just like all in the feelings type of vibe so that’s where it comes from. Also, from real-life situations and other people’s situations that I learned something from. But it’s all about love.
How would you want to improve yourself after the EP?
How I would love to improve is do more collaborations with artists in Kenya especially and even all over the world. I’m not limiting myself because I know I can do it. Also just have more depth into my music, I don’t think I can explain that in words. You just have to wait and listen to my future releases and you will definitely hear and feel the difference.
What do you love doing in your spare time?
What I love doing in my spare time is listening to music, dissecting music, watching things that have to do with music, watching Beyonce performances. Also, makeup and fashion. I do my own makeup and styling and I’m definitely interested in all that. Lastly, posting covers.
Here are the links to songs by Darya Kish:
Slow Down Child
Check her out on:
YouTube: Darya Kish
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com