About Kiana Ledé
Pop/R&B singer/songwriter Kiana Ledé is both a cautionary tale—exemplifying the challenges of being signed young—and an inspiration to young women searching for their voices. Born in 1997 in Phoenix, AZ, Ledé showed her musical aptitude early, memorizing the alphabet song and singing karaoke by age three, but her real coup came in 2011 when she won the Kidz Star USA talent competition—beating out an astonishing 45,000 contenders. She signed to RCA the next year, releasing a dance-pop single, “Hey Chica,” that showcased her elastic voice and undeniable charisma. Three years later, however, Ledé was dropped from the label, and she turned her attention to acting, which led to her appearing in MTV’s Scream and playing Veronica Washington on Netflix’s All About the Washingtons. As a musician, she struggled to find her lane, recording an EP of piano-ballad covers of hit singles in 2015—including a lovely take on Post Malone’s “White Iverson”—followed by some Christmas songs in 2016. But that was enough to draw the attention of Republic Records, which snapped her up and supported her to make personal, pop-brushed R&B. She released the EP Selfless in 2018, featuring the star-making female empowerment anthem “Ex.” (Both French Montana and Lil Baby remixed the song, which made the Top 10 of Billboard’s R&B singles chart.) In April 2020, she dropped her full-length debut, KIKI—an album of heartfelt songs that marry the emotionalism of ’90s R&B with 21st-century production. Ledé co-wrote all the songs, collaborating with some of her favorite artists (including Ari Lennox and 6LACK) and finding her appealing—and inspiring—voice.
BORNApril 3, 1997