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Kaya Stewart's 'So Good' Injects Pop With Nashville Blues

Singer Kaya Stewart and musician Jamie Lidell are British-bred kindred spirits, but met in Nashville.

"I actually met Jamie through a real estate agent when I was looking for a place in Nashville," Stewart tells NPR Music. "I was working with a bunch of writers trying to hone in on my sound and she suggested I work with her friend Jamie Lidell ... We set up a session and started writing in his home studio. We clicked and have been writing ever since."

The pair formed L.I.Y.A. and shared its first single "California" earlier this year. Now, the duo goes deeper with "So Good," a new single and video released under Kaya Stewart's name.

The beat of this subdued slow burner starts simply with plucked strings to accompany Stewart's words, then builds up to a crashing bass for the chorus. The lyrics are simple, yet weighted in Stewart's delivery.

"It's about a relationship where there are so many ups and downs but ... you're hanging on to those moments," Stewart explains. "This was a song that really defined Jamie and I's sound. It's so simplistic, but so powerful."

Though each artist has become known for their experimental and electronic-aided sounds, the bluesy bellowing of the song suggests Nashville's influence has already seeped into their creative process.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Sidney Madden is a reporter and editor for NPR Music. As someone who always gravitated towards the artforms of music, prose and dance to communicate, Madden entered the world of music journalism as a means to authentically marry her passions and platform marginalized voices who do the same.
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