12 Songs, 44 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Niykee Heaton’s debut mixtape distills the hip-hop covers and intimate live shows that fueled her rise into a heady brew. Heaton’s whispery growl adds bite to the swirling romantic uncertainty of “Dream Team,” while the handclaps and strumming that power “Lullaby” coax a reluctant lover with deceptively laidback vibes. The sparse, longing “Bad Intentions” (here assisted by Atlanta rappers Migos) ably sums up Heaton’s trap-pop aesthetic and mischievous attitude. But her songwriting throws out enough curveballs to keep listeners guessing—and wanting more.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Niykee Heaton’s debut mixtape distills the hip-hop covers and intimate live shows that fueled her rise into a heady brew. Heaton’s whispery growl adds bite to the swirling romantic uncertainty of “Dream Team,” while the handclaps and strumming that power “Lullaby” coax a reluctant lover with deceptively laidback vibes. The sparse, longing “Bad Intentions” (here assisted by Atlanta rappers Migos) ably sums up Heaton’s trap-pop aesthetic and mischievous attitude. But her songwriting throws out enough curveballs to keep listeners guessing—and wanting more.

TITLE TIME
3:28
4:05
4:42
3:01
5:22
3:13
3:35
2:59
2:32
4:14
3:15
3:55

About Niykee Heaton

An artist whose output alternates between acoustic pop ballads and bleary slow jams inspired by contemporary rap and R&B, Niykee Heaton was discovered through her YouTube channel. In 2011, while still enrolled in high school, the suburban Chicago native began uploading clips of performances recorded in her bedroom -- covers of R&B, rap, and pop hits, along with occasional originals, for which she accompanied herself on acoustic guitar. Near the end of the following year, a version of Chief Keef's "Love Sosa" was featured on the website WorldStarHipHop -- the day before the singer turned 18 -- and she subsequently caught the attention of Steve Rifkind and Russell Simmons, who signed her to their Capitol affiliate All Def label. Bad Intentions, a six-track EP of alternately sleek and strummy pop-R&B hybrids, was released in September 2014. Late the following year, she performed a series of concerts in Canada and the U.S., dubbed The Bedroom Tour. In March 2016, Capitol proper issued The Bedroom Tour Playlist. Pushed as a mixtape, it featured remixed and remastered material that Heaton had previously made available through her active self-promotion via social media. The mixtape debuted at number 39 on the Billboard 200. ~ Andy Kellman

  • ORIGIN
    South Africa
  • BORN
    December 4, 1991

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