This Women’s Day, FAVE Sounds is ready to introduce to our community the gorgeous and talented singer-songwriter Kyra. We met Kyra some time ago in person and were struck by her beauty and simplicity. She gave us the idea of someone with a profound sense of self: as a woman, mother, and inspiring music artist, Kyra is truly a role model for females everywhere who aren’t afraid to dream big and achieve their goals despite the challenges the industry throws their way. We got a chance to speak with Kyra about her latest release, her thoughts on women empowerment, the ideal environment that she looks forward to seeing in the music industry and what women can bring to the table and how can men help make a difference.
“It’s essential to have a broad spectrum of people involved in every industry and society as a whole should be encouraging women in more sectors. A one-gender dominated world is a very scary place to be in because that means that decisions affecting our future are being made by one group of people. Those decision makers tend to be white men who cannot relate to the needs of women and communities they know nothing about. So we are missing out on a major voice that needs to be heard’
As a woman of colour, Kyra represents not only women but also reminds us of the diversity of culture and heritage that music builds on and how it binds people together.“Lack of representation for women of colour is still a massive issue. We are all responsible for challenging norms and ensuring our own creative teams and the people we are working with are diverse. It’s down to all of us to achieve that by seeking out talent from BAME communities and as much as IWD is about women, really these steps need to be taken by men that are in positions of power and have the ability to change the norm. This is what I would like to see more of.”
We believe that the women who have already forged their way into the music industry have an excellent opportunity to speak up for other women. We were very curious to know who inspired Kyra in her journey and career.
“I am actually very blessed to have so many amazing women surrounding me, I really am. I just recently started working with a female led PR company called Public Ambition (@PublicAmbition) It’s run by two boss women, Katy and Raye who are fierce go-getters, smart, witty and generally LIT! We connected from the moment we met and their hunger and drive are infectious. There’s something about raw female energy that is so powerful, it’s not to say men aren’t a force but there’s something magical about women making moves.
My second pick is a wonderful woman called Tasha Keating of ‘She Runs It’ (@SheRunsItldn) which is a female lead community organisation which aims to empower women through playful, practical and holistic means of fitness and wellbeing. She’s also a Reebok ambassador and runs some amazing sessions and mountain retreats. We meet up for work days and encourage each other with our goals. It’s completely inspiring to see her breaking boundaries in her approach to wellbeing.”
We are holding our breath. Listening to a woman talking so positively about other women is just refreshing.
How about in the music industry?
“I’d love to sit down for a cuppa with Jazz Sherman, Anne-Marie’s manager! It’s a tough role to be a manager, let alone a female manger. Her journey with Anne – Marie is nothing short of exceptional! Another female manager who I have a lot of respect for is Nike who manages an artist called Shakka. Being female and being a black female comes with it’s own challenges and it takes a lot of strength of character to sit in a boardroom and make your voice heard amongst a room full of men.
Kyra goes on to say:
When we think of music in particular, we tend to just think of the artists. It’s important to prop up women behind the lense’
Kyra walked us through her career in the music industry while being a Mum.
“Last year I spoke on a UN panel for ‘She said.so’ about parenthood in music. In every industry and in particular music, there is a massive stigma around women having children. Are they going to be reliable? Are they going to come back to work? Ar they still ‘sexy’? More initiatives like flexible work hours for parents need to be compulsory for families because Mothers are the foundation of a good society. Check out @Mother_Pukka leading a great initiative on this.
Becoming a Mum has actually actually made me get my sh*t together and helped me to focus on my goals. Don’t get me wrong, it’s been bloody hard work and a lot of sacrifice. You’re constantly knackered, running on minimal sleep. You have a choice to either nap when baby naps, clean the house and quickly have something to eat or spend that time on your laptop driving things on and chasing your dreams.
I’m proud of being a Mum and how hard I’ve worked to get this release together independently. I’ve received so many messages from women who ask ‘oh my God, how are you doing it?’, ‘What is it like?’ And you just do because it’s what you really want. It streamlines your life goals.
It’s a privilege to be able to be a reference point for women to say ‘Kyra’s still doing it, you know what, it is achievable and it is doable’.
When I was first pregnant I was so scared, I was so anxious, I thought ‘that’s it, my life is over’ but actually it’s just the beginning”. Bring it on girl!!
Body and image are an evergreen topic in all creative industries, but Kyra is leading the way with her take on body positivity, “It’s important to present my authentic self. Learning to be comfortable in my own skin and not body shaming other women for things they may wear is important. I make a conscious effort to not alter my image in unrealistic ways; my pictures and videos are not altered or photoshopped. I’m very serious about it. Recently I did a photo shoot and when the photographer came back with heavy alterations, I said ‘no, go back to the raw images’.
What people need to understand is that there are several things that make pictures great. There is lighting, make-up and there is a basic level of retouching like neatening creases etc which is normal in photography, but still leaves you looking like your true self. I’m completely anti heavy photo shopping of body parts and overly slimming down images. It all contributes to a lack of body positivity which has such a negative affect on young girls. It’s up to celebs to take a stand in saying ‘actually no, I don’t wanna project that false image of myself’.
Anyway there’s no point editing my pics as when you see me in person you’d be really disappointed” Her laugh is contagious “It sounds so cheesy but learning to love myself that without comparing myself to others is the way forward’’
Over the years Kyra has fine-tuned her voice to depict a level of emotional prosody that leaves the listeners spell-bounded. Making her debut with a remake of Rosie Gaines’ popular track, ‘Closer than Close’, a collaboration with producer The Garden (Starwood Management), Kyra has sewed the seeds of her music career and is set to win hearts with her magical voice and charismatic personality.
What else can we expect from Kyra in 2019?
“A lot more music. I’ve got a concept EP on the way, it’s called Xanadu. I call it an EP but it’s more like a mini-album. The albums I grew up loving, the Lauryn Hill’s of the world, artists like Janelle Monae… These are bodies of work that have had time and effort put into. They’re not just a bunch of songs thrown together. That’s really what I want to give people with my music. I have some great women around me and I’m very excited about what’s to come.”
And so are we!
You can follow Kyra on
- The first few steps to building your confidence back - May 22, 2020
- KYRA: From a Girl with Dreams to a Rising Star - March 8, 2019