IAMDDB is a British female rapper and singer, originally hailing from Manchester. Her vibe and aesthetic are a crucial component in what makes IAMDDB so infectious as an artist. She has cultivated her own sound by merging her love for both trap-rap and old-school jazz. When those two very divergent genres come together – you have the birth of urban jazz.
IAMDDB did an interview with British Vogue, where she revealed that her inspiration in creating the genre urban jazz, stemmed from the musical influences that surrounded her as a child. IAMDDB grew up watching her father play jazz festivals and would sometimes accompany him on stage. She also spent six months in Angola, where she learned the power and magnitude jazz still has in Africa.
“I push urban jazz so hard because I saw how much it helped people to connect and heal. I thought, imagine the impact if I brought this music from Africa to the rest of the world.”
IAMDDB did just that and it’s evident in her latest release of three new singles strung together in an EP format titled, “Kare Package.” “Kare Package” dropped at the end of December – setting a positive and incredibly calming tone for her fans to indulge in during the transition into the new year. In the past, IAMDDB has been known for more energetic and rap-heavy singles such as “Shade” and “Kurrency.”
Although IAMDDB maintains her rougher, edgy side – it’s obvious that her intent behind “Kare Package” was to create therapeutic music for her fans. IAMDDB flow is incredibly melodic and soulful – so much so that her voice has been described as an ocean wave, rising and falling with the tides of life. She has even coined the term, “Wavy.”
In an interview with The Irish Times, she explains that wavy “is the new way of saying cool. It’s a frame of mind, man.” IAMDDB has made it known that water is a major source of inspiration for her music and state of mind by inventing the phrase, “Mermaid Season.” When IAMDDB was asked in an interview with Footasylum Magazine as to the meaning behind this phrase; she replied “I love long braids. When I have them, I feel like a mermaid. I have too much respect for the ocean to f*** around with it, but at the same time have the deepest connection to it.”
Wavy is the best word to describe the jazz instrumentals and overall tone of “Kare Package.” The first track, “Bubble Tea” is much more hip-hop driven as IAMDBB spits over a hypnotizing beat. “Bubble Tea” is all about maintaining your inner peace by keeping other people’s opinions and negativity at bay. This track’s lyrics also are unapologetically queer, speaking her love for women into existence.
She raps, “Sippin on ice and remy, all of my shows are sold out. She couldn’t believe it, I’m so lit. Picking up all my checks, wanna see you try now. Swear, is it sweeter than the pie now? Yeah, no pressure in the sky. No depression on my mind.”
IAMDDB is exposing loved ones who have tried to come back into her life now that she is more famous and successful but, fled the scene when she was struggling to make it as an artist. She also reveals her secrets for maintaining positivity is found in her moments of blissful solitude – where the only person she must impress is herself. Her inherent need for independence both as an artist, and in her personal life takes center stage in track, “Scare You.”
“Scare You” draws much more upon IAMDDB’s glossy and velvet vocals as they float around a haunting beat. She effortlessly switches between spoken word and blues-inspired vocal rifts – the combination creates a sensation of levitation.
On the hook, she sings “Demons, they creep in the night. Don’t got time for crazy, DD independent. I don’t rely on a label, so I set the pace. I can see it in your face, I scare you.”
IAMDDB knows that her originality and ability to stand on her own intimidates and threatens others around her. The very fact that IAMDDB is a queer, women of color artist who has single-handedly cultivated a brand-new genre – is enough to send many people running. Yet, her intention behind her music is to be a beacon of radiant positivity for fans. Instead of being afraid of her own magnitude, she glistens and thrives in it.
The final track, “Sit back” is full of contemplation and meditative thoughts. The beat is carried by a groovy synthesizer meandering in and out of the track. On “Sit back,” IAMDDB urges and warns her fans to not give in to the fast-paced way of living that society implements.
She sings, “Sit back, relax, and take your time. Ain’t no pressure with the world. I sit back, and I observe. They say I’m feisty, how you decide that? Kind of b**** that don’t say please. I know light can find the dark. If it’s meant to be, it’ll always find you.”
IAMDDB finds comfort in contemplation and the unknown. These self-revelations cannot be made without slowing down and making time for reflection. If you need music that you can catch a vibe to, smoke a joint to, sip herbal tea to – IAMDDB is your girl. The future of urban jazz is in good hands, after all – it’s always #MermaidSeason.
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