Born and raised in South Carolina, the state that produced legends James brown and Eartha Kitt, the up and coming artists Zakiya has built a reputable reputation throughout the south east as a singer and song writer. Since the age of three, Zakiya has been molding her place in the world as an entertainer and show stopper. Knowing the importance of a strong education, Zakiya is currently attending the College of Charleston where she is studying theater and business. In Charleston Zakiya made her mark quickly. Just last year she performed in the Piccolo Spoleto festival in the musical, “Rock N’ Roll Heaven.” After Zakiya was cast in the musical hairspray, she became a member of one of the largest theater companies in South Carolina, Charleston Stage. Aside from Zakiya’s acting and musical theater talent, she has used her soulful sound to produce her first album “The Awakening”. Under the guidance of JelaniProductions, Zakiya and Jelani created a musical master piece. Her jazzy appeal is compared to songstress Chrisette Michele mixed with a hip hop beat that is similar to Erykah Badu. “The Awakening” is a merge of big band and hip hop bass with a pop flare. One of Zakiya’s favorite songs is “Hip Hop” featuring Ozzy, a highly esteemed rapper from California. The song “Hip Hop”, explains the beauty of the hip hop culture. Zakiya reveals her love for Hip Hop, “Hip-Hop is everything, the rhythm, the Struggle, the movement. Hip-Hop is you and me. I grew up listening to the Fugess, A Tribe called Quest, Tupac, and Biggie, so Hip Hop is something that I have always cherished.” The album unravels, from lyrical story telling songs like “sinful lips” to the big blues sound of “Suga Baby.” Aside from Zakiya’s album she has been very busy. She is currently in the TV sitcom “Love Always Charleston” where she plays the role of Lyric. “This is my first film production, so I am really excited,” Zakiya says.
Zakiya’s journey began when she performed at the Apollo in South Carolina. Soon after Zakiya began taking over many stages. She was awarded 2nd place at the Omega talent hunt where singers between the ages of thirteen through eighteen compete for recognition and an opportunity to advance in their careers. Zakiya is self driven and determined to become a successful entertainer. It is evident through out these past years as she has won and performed at many events. She became the winner of the Black Expo shining star competition in 2008 and in 2009. Prior to becoming the 1st runner up of Palmetto Idol where people from all over the state of South Carolina came to compete, she performed with the band Finese two original songs ” Epitome” and “Free Myself” at the popular jazz fest, hosted by 103.1 Kiss FM’s Tre Tailor. Zakiya’s music is a reflection of freedom and spirit. Her goal is to encourage and inspire other young artists as well as her fans through her passion for music. Zakiya continues to be open minded to change as she learns more about the industry and what it truly takes to become a successful entertainer. Zakiya’s style ranges from neo–soul, to pop and is optimistic about trying things outside of her box. Her music can be found at myspace.com/Zakiyabe and iTunes.