When the king of kings, Kendrick Lamar, describes a rising musician as one of the only female performers that “might be the illest doing it now,” there’s no doubt the pressure is on. At only 24 years young, Simbi Abisola Abiola Ajikawo, aka Little Simz, has already been co-signed by Kendrick, J. Cole, Jay-Z, and A$AP Rocky. Having been making her presence known on the British rap scene, American rappers and producers are keeping Little Simz on their radar.
Originally, Little Simz didn’t expect to have a career in music. Back in 2009, Simz was first cast in the BBC original show Spirit Warriors, followed by a role on the E4 television series Youngers. After her short stint on the small screen, Simz distanced herself from her acting career once she gained publicity. She quickly turned her attention to music; teaching herself to produce her own tracks and edit music videos. She worked diligently, dropping an impressive 8 mixtapes by 2013 under her own label, AGE: 101 Music. Having the opportunity to ride the rising popularity wave of SoundCloud, Simz picked up 50,000 followers by 2014 that eventually pushed her to her first tour of the United States by 2015.
By September 2015, Little Simz dropped her first full length album titled A Curious Tale of Trials + Persons, which landed #20 on the UK R&B music charts. Her debut album was imperative for Simz’s success, allowing her to connect to a much wider range of fans outside of the SoundCloud community.
New fans found Little Simz to be a unique blend of some of the most sought after R&B performers including Missy Elliott, Lauryn Hill, and Estelle. Simz’s grimy experimental flow and ability to express confidence in her integration of personal experiences and abstract storytelling makes her extremely unique. With the major advancement of her first album, Simz kept her momentum going with the release of Stillness in Wonderland, which included features from performers like SiR, Syd, and BADBADNOTGOOD. Soon after the release of her second album, Simz had the opportunity to open for the Gorillaz during their Humanz tour and even landed a feature on their track Garage Palace.
In August 2018, Little Simz confirmed her third studio album which will include her newest single, Offence. With the buzz around this release gaining traction and her network growing, Little Simz’s third album will be making a splash that will be felt all over the UK and United States.