Best Music Spotlight

Kadi Begins To ‘Unlearn’ Her Pain On Heartfelt Single

Photograph of the blog post author, Sophie Belle

Sophie Belle

19.2.2021

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“I’ve been through really difficult times in my life and I’m using my music to share and encourage others to move forward”…

Single cover for 'unlearn' a track by rising London singer Kadi.

Let’s take a look at Kadi’s music and review her debut single ‘Unlearn’.

Rising singer Kadi is a young vocalist from South East London. She realised her gift for penning tracks at the early age of 12, and began to take her talents seriously aged just 16. 

The artist’s writing skills are showcased throughout ‘Unlearn’. The track quickly grew on me, as I found it is a deep and emotional song about having to break your own cycles and ‘unlearn’ behavioural patterns after experiencing emotional and physical abandonment. 

Kadi touches on the idea that, when it’s ingrained from a young age it can become a lot harder to begin that process, and takes us on this journey of ‘unlearning’ through her personal lyrics. The track’s conversational tone stood out to me because it makes the song all the more raw and relatable. 

The songstress’s vocals are soft and steady throughout the song, as she accepts that moving on is best for her. Singing “now I have to unlearn”

Kadi hooked me in with her effortless flow and I actually found myself singing along to the track after one listen. Her catchy flow, coupled with her tender vocals contrast well against the low, somber instrumental. 

I asked Kadi some questions about her musical journey so far…

Is there anyone in your life who inspired you to make music? If so, how and why do they inspire you? 

I wouldn’t say anyone in my life inspired me to make music, although my father played bass and long before I started getting into music my big sister was known as the singer at school so music was in my atmosphere through that.

Fantasia really inspired me growing up, her journey on American Idol was
important for me to see as a young black girl then, her winning song ‘I Believe’ is still so powerful to me, her voice is special and seeing her personal growth now from when I watched her movie Life Is Not A Fairytale is just inspiring.

I remember hearing ‘These Arms of Mine’ by Otis Redding a lot in my father’s car, his voice has stayed with me, there is a lot of soul in his voice and inspired my own voice without realizing it.

Growing up I was listening to a range of different artists like Avril Lavigne,
Vanessa Carlton (her actual discography and not just the hit song A Thousand Miles), Beyoncé, The Fray and then Dustin O’ Halloran a pianist who inspired me to play the piano when I was around 13 years old. There was so many different
artists I listened to.

Are there any ‘messages’ or ‘morals’ that you feel are important to represent throughout your music?

Throughout my music I want to spread the message of hope, overcoming and transformation. I’ve been through really difficult times in my life and I’m using my music to share and encourage others to move forward, things will get better but you have to believe so and take the steps towards it, whether there small steps or big leaps as long as your taking action.

Why do you enjoy making music? 

I enjoy making music because it’s a safe space for me where I can process my thoughts, I also feel like it’s the only time where I make sense and it makes me happy. I’ve had moments where I’ve tried to give it up but I just can’t, I’ve always found my way back to it.

‘Unlearn’ sounds like a personal and emotionally-deep song. Is it easier to write songs with such a personal tone, or do you face difficulties being so open in your music?

Yeah Unlearn is a personal one, for me the difficulty comes when I’m sharing it with someone else and then when I’m preparing to release it, that’s when I’m a bit worried and it sinks in that these are personal songs. It’s easier for me to write songs with a personal tone because I’m by myself when I’m writing them.

Where were you when you wrote ‘Unlearn’? Is there an interesting story about the time you spent writing and recording it? 

I was in my room in tears when I wrote Unlearn, I came home from a therapy session which left me confused, upset and feeling like I was never going to get better, that in itself made me feel worse but it was in that moment when I realized why I felt that way. At the time, I wasn’t given the space to process my feelings. I don’t want to write a song in that way again to be honest, just listening to the voice notes makes me uncomfortable but it needed to come out.

Kadi’s answers show us just how important music is to her life, and how personal she is willing to get in order to spread hope and encouragement for others.

I look forward to hearing more music from Kadi, especially after a listen to her other singles. I found ‘Do Your Part’ to be quite similar to ‘Unlearn’ but ‘Short and Sweet’ is a more upbeat track, and still remains true to Kadi’s depth and substance. 

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