For a debut single, Khamari is setting the bar high with “Jealous”.
A sonic blend of Imad Royal and Khalid, Khamari makes himself a force to be reckoned with the chilled RnB pop single. This is very much a sort of “state of mind” kind of track, airy and vibey. Touching on envy and being alone, this track is very much the single guy’s anthem. Self-written and produced in his bedroom, and given a final production assist by his close collaborators, Trackside (Selena Gomez, Tinashe, Majid Jordan), the song is the first of five initial releases for Khamari. His heartfelt vocal sits front and center, his writing hits at a sense of relatable isolation, and the title lyric finally pleads its case in the climactic last lines of the song.
"Getting ready to put out music is a surreal experience. Even though I’ve been working a lot on these records it never felt like it was actually gonna come out until we were thinking about artwork, so we could upload the final version. It's exciting though too since I’ve never put out my own shit. I’m hyped for everyone to hear what I’ve been working on, and make more.
I wrote and recorded Jealous at home in Boston last year and brought it to Trackside, who I've been friends with for a while. They've been helping me finish production on songs and get things across the finish line. They’ve had a big influence on the quality of my own writing and production too, working with them has taught me a lot about the creative process.
Jealous doesn’t have anything to do with what’s happening in the world right now [referring to Coronavirus lockdown], but I can see how it feels relatable. To me, it kind of gives that lonely stoner feeling you can get from listening to Kid Cudi. I just think it hits in the same way cause we all have those thoughts and get in that headspace sometimes." - Khamari
A multifaceted independent artist, songwriter, and producer, Khamari grew up in Dorchester, MA, just outside Boston. While still in school, he quietly and inadvertently racked up hundreds of millions of plays and over 50,000 followers on Soundcloud with cover songs recorded in his bedroom as a side-hustle. Before deciding to leave Berklee College of Music early, he made sure to pick up enough skills to shape his artistic future, and decided to dive directly into the chaos of the music industry.
After trying his hand songwriting with some of the music industry's biggest songwriters and producers, Khamari refocused his energy on his own artistry. Over the last few years, through trips to NYC and LA, he developed the aesthetic for his debut. His first project wraps his powerfully earnest songwriting around organic contemporary productions. Skilled as a vocalist, pianist, and guitarist, his music is distilled from influences ranging as wide as The Beatles and Stevie Wonder to Frank Ocean and Kid Cudi.
Review by Hannah Schneider