#UpNext: Yeza bringing the ‘rude girl’ vibe to roots and culture
Recording Artiste Yeza (Photo: Instagram @maliphotographyja)

A strong proponent of self-exploration and self-actualisation, up-and-coming artiste Yeza unsurprisingly coined a name for her own style of roots and culture reggae.

‘Rude girl roots’, she said, perfectly depicts the kind of music and personality that she is bringing to the industry.

The artiste, given name Monique Chambers, has always had an interest in music, and was brought to the studio by her father – who is not a musician – while she was in high school. She was prioritising school at the time, however, and while she knew that she had the talent, she held out, finished her schooling and got her degree before deciding that it was time to see what the music world had to offer.

“I just decided one day when I was in my room that if I don’t do this now I am going to live with regrets, and I don’t want to live with regrets so I thought I would give it a shot and that was a little before my first single was released, probably the same year,” Yeza said.

The year she referred to is 2017 when she released her first official single titled ‘Everything is Irie’, though she was doing small shows prior to this release.

As the years progressed, Yeza released more music, all with her message of self-exploration and actualization so that listeners are inspired to know their gift and ultimately use it to uplift society. Her latest release, ‘God African’ drives this home even more, with the artiste explaining that “we are gods and goddesses; we are the highest of the high in terms of the culture and whatever we have inherited by legacy and otherwise we should be offering it to the world because we are the gift.”

Yeza added, “There is a sense of responsibility also that I push in my music that everybody is responsible for the advancement of the entire world and universe at large.”

The artiste further explained that knowing oneself is the first step to finding ones purpose to advance society and that is why she coined the name Yeza, which is short for Yezambique. She told OBSERVER ONLINE that she did not completely identify with her given name so she started researching for a name that better describes her as an individual.

Yezambique, the name she chose, is Swahili inspired. Though it is not a direct translation, when researched, the name is associated with words like strength, resilient and power. These, Yeza said, describe the person she is and has had to be even in music as there are many challenges that arise when trying to build a career within the industry.

“It is challenging but it is the thing to do if you really love the career. If you love what you are doing you’re going to want to do the right thing and if it can set up your future, like the Marleys, there are all the benefits that will be reaped down the line. So as for the challenges, you just have to get your ducks in a row and dot your I’s and cross your t’s dem but you know it’s worth it,” she explained.

In the past five years since her first release, Yeza has put out songs that are loved, and unique to her, which has resulted in continuous growth personally.

“Every year I can see where I am growing and more and more people are logging on to the music, and my sound. Streams on Spotify and everywhere else are climbing and I am really grateful. I think the people are receiving what I am trying to offer, and some of them are very, very keen on what I am offering,” the artiste said.

“Someone explicitly said to me one day by dm on Instagram that they like how I am not boring but still keep it righteous. That’s how I imagine it and that’s exactly what they are telling me so it means the message is being translated and the message is being received well. So, give thanks for that,” Yeza added.

When asked what keeps her inspired, Yeza told OBSERVER ONLINE that the music she releases come from her own experiences and life as a whole, and whatever is currently happening within society. She added that this is how her song ‘Glory’, which features Sizzla Kalonji on the remix, was created – as an encouragement after surviving the lock downs brought on by the coronavirus pandemic.

More of Yeza’s ‘rude girl roots’ music can be found on all streaming platforms, on YouTube and on social media platforms including Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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