Chicago newcomer Ravyn Lenae is on the rise. The vocalist and songwriter has shared a new single produced by Steve Lacy of The Internet. The song is called “Sticky” and prominently features Lenae’s unique voice, which twirls and twists in high registers in a song that explores the frustrations of love.
“Sticky” begins with the wonky sound of a vibrating organ. Soon a fresh beat enters the mix, followed by Lenae’s unmistakable voice. Her lyrics and delivery are refreshingly rhythmic, full of the fire and confusion of love:
“What did you do?
Spinning, spinning, round and round
Sticky, sticky, off the ground
Slipping til you let me drown
Hate me then you love me now”
It feels like “Sticky” is a sensual take on the frustrating parts of a new love interest. Lenae references the strange, spinning feeling of not knowing where you stand with someone, and the confusion of being on again, off again, always a bit confused as to the other person’s intentions:
“You know I cannot shake ya
You know I cannot break ya
You only fool me then you lose me then right back I take ya
You know we’re back together
You don’t want this forever
Then I look stupid, call me foolish
But I’ll do whatever”
Lenae recently released her second EP “Midnight Moonlight” on Atlantic Records. After a prior EP called “Moon Shoes” that she self-released in 2015, Atlantic soon picked her up and reissued the recording in 2016. With the “Sticky” collaboration with Steve Lacy and a full-length most likely in the works, things are looking up for Lenae.
The biggest surprise of all this is Lenae’s age. She just graduated from the Chicago High School for the Arts, and is only 18 years old. If she continues to make songs like this, it looks like she will have a long career ahead of her.
Lenae grew up in Chicago, which has been a hotbed for some of the best R&B and soul music over the years, and especially as of late. Ever since Chance the Rapper’s meteoric rise to fame with his albums “Acid Rap” and “Coloring Book,” it seems like all eyes of the music world are on the Windy City. Such game-changing artists as Jamila Woods and Nico Segal (also known by his former stage name Donnie Trumpet) also hail from the Chicago area, and often work together on projects (Chance and Segal are both in the band The Social Experiment, which released an album, “Surf,” in 2015.)
You can currently find Ravyn Lenae on tour with SZA in a few more December dates throughout the United States. Also check out her two EPs “Moon Shoes” and “Midnight Moonlight” that are available now.