Hailing from the Bay Area and grounded with a dash of southern flavor, Folami has added vibrant soul to the musical genius of CHIC feat. Nile Rodgers. From NYC to Tokyo; London to the Atlanta. Folami always leaves audiences wanting more. Her nine plus years of training and technique delivers the promise of stand out performances every time.
The name, Folami, is of Yoruba origin, meaning “respect and honor me” – it is no wonder that Folami has been blessed with a gifted voice that leaves listeners completely captivated. Folami has been wowing audiences since the tender age of three when she recited the Black National Anthem for a crowd during Black History month at Stanford University. Her father, a leader of a funk band, kept her close during rehearsals and shows; and her mother always made sure she was in front of the stage for local events. Folami’s talent was nurtured by a community of musicians and artists alike, providing her ample opportunities for growth. By high school, Folami was well known in the local Musical Theater scene. Her affinity for the genres of jazz and R&B groomed her into the mesmerizing pop-serin you know today. Folami’s first professional gigs involved performing jazz standard solos and singing back-up in Bay Area nightclubs under the supervision of her vocal coach.
Howard University provided Folami with her first formal training while achieving a Bachelor of Fine Arts with a concentration in Musical Theater. While there, Folami first caught the attention of former lead singer of CHIC, Sylver Logan Sharp, who was inspired by her potential. A few years later, that fateful meeting proved to be more than a coincidence. Sylver’s band mate, at the time, was transitioning to work with another artist and the band CHIC was in search for a new vocalist. This opportunity officially launched her professional career as one of CHIC’s leading ladies.
In this Moment
Traveling and touring has made Folami a student of the world, enjoying and digesting copious amounts of appetizing sound-culture. The result is her cultivating vocal blend of sophistication and youthful energy. As an artist, she continues to develop and train her ear while writing and producing her own material. Folami’s sound is a direct reflection of her global experience and her growing relationship with Dance Music. “Dance music is like a virus: it has affected so many different genres.” – Avicii
Folami’s music recalls the uplifting grooves of the 70’s and early 80’s adding in key elements of today’s party anthems. “My lyrics come from personal situations as well as having lived vicariously through others,” says Folami. “My goal is to be a positive icon in the music industry, giving therapy to listeners for their heart and mind; helping them understand that life is better than it may seem if you just learn to love unconditionally, creating a massive movement of self-healing.”
The Buzz on Discovery
It is a magical moment when the right pieces come together. Discovery was originally produced on Garage Band by Grammy Nominated, singer/songwriter, and producer Lester “L2” Shaw. While on tour in Morocco, Folami asked Nile Rodgers if he would feature on the record. The hit-maker immediately showed his support and agreed to play on the song. The music legend became even more excited when he realized that new technology would be a part of the production. Folami would then call the song’s composer, New York based multi-talented artist, Mckenzie Frye, to ask for an additional verse.
After doing some diligent research, the team decided on Apogee Jam as the best way to import Nile’s live guitar into Folami’s iPhone7 for the session.
“After arriving in London, one evening after our show, Nile phoned and let me know he was ready to record the session! That same evening I took my Apogee Jam and my iPhone 7 to him and I set the session up on Garage Band. I made sure he was plugged in and away we went. A few minor technical difficulties later we had a session. Immediately after we finished the session, I ran out of there praying that my phone saved everything. By the time I reached my hotel room, Nile had posted a small video clip of him recording into my iPhone. Moments later, the session I engineered went viral…” – Folami
One of Folami’s most valued achievements thus far was performing at the White House for President Barack Obama’s going away party. Also enriching her journey was her experience… Sharing the stage with such greats as Prince and Nelson Mandela has also enriched her journey. Folami continues to grow through international collaborations that include the production talents of producer Sebastien Guidetti (Montreux) as featured on the AOS – VISIONS OF THE FUTURE album, Funk/ Disco/ Soul producer Frank Ryle (Copenhagen) as featured on THE ADVENTURES OF JEFFERSON KEYES and participation in the well anticipated album IT’S ABOUT TIME from legendary hitmaker Nile Rodgers, which includes the smash single “I’LL BE THERE.” Notably, all recent collaborations have been pressed to vinyl. This air of nostalgia and vintage is a meaningful part of Folami’s aesthetic.
Fun, uplifting, gracious and explosive… this is Folami. She is most happy when she is performing and changing lives with the love that she spreads through her infectious music. “Music can change the world because it can change people.” ― Bono.