Kehlani is probably one of the most known unknowns in R&B music today. If you follow her Instagram, you will see the 20 year old Oakland hero performing around the world in front of sold out crowds, but she is still underground. When Complex is not getting yelled at for their lists by New York radio personalities, they actually make good lists that showcase the next best things. The Tsuani Mob leader’s debut mixtape, Cloud 19 mainly caught my attention because of the artwork by her creative director, Stix. Seeing it as one of the best mixtapes of 2014 on their list and on several other sites’ year end lists influenced me to listen to it more than once on Live Mixtapes.
This year, Kehlani has kept that momentum going all throughout 2015 putting herself on a pedestal for the world to share in her wins and losses in her personal life with very detailed biographical songs. Produced by frequent collaborator, Jahan Sweet, “Tore Up” is the last song released before her second project, this summer’s You Should Be Here received a Grammy nomination for Best Urban Contemporary Album. The song is about the aftermath of a relationship ending; a list of vices to cope with her loss and preoccupy her time.
While I’m still bewildered by the omission of DS2 from next year’s Grammy’s ceremony, I will still be hoping that another favorite album of mine from 2015 will be awarded the prestigious music award. Fortunately, I’ve already won every time I watch “The Way” video.