Since Shamir Bailey’s release of Ratchet last year, it seems that the urban pop prodigy’s takeover is imminent. Bailey’s genre bending and blending showcase his efforts to remain unattached to a specific musical category.
The 21-year-old Las Vegas native is a quintessential millennial who defies typical sexuality and gender boundaries. Bailey is interested in representing himself rather than speaking for any groups.
Bailey’s sexual ambiguity and gender fluidity are accompanied by a philosophy of living freely — an ode to self-love and confidence is conveyed through Bailey’s sound. His music is as complex as he is; when he speaks about himself and his experiences, it’s evident that music is an outlet for the artist.
Bailey is someone who is passionate about many things: cooking, yarn work, and painting to name a few. But for now, music is taking centre stage, just as he did at the Port Lands stage during the North by Northeast festival in Toronto. His performance was captivating, his soft bubbly sound contrasting the strength of his vocals, with road heavy bass riffs and vintage synths.
Both on and offstage Bailey has a gravitational pull; his humble self-assurance and colorful persona disregard those who call for an explanation. Bailey is unapologetically himself, paving his own path towards a unique brand of pop.