Cinderella, growing up, & all things green.
Alex Mali (she/her) is a singer-songwriter from Brooklyn, NY, rapidly gaining fans across the country with her unique take on R&B. Mali was born into a Caribbean family of five — (mother Jamaican, father Trinidadian) and her two older twin sisters. Though a very shy young girl, she was quickly moved by the arts.
What does “raise the femme voice” mean to you?
Women taking ownership and speaking up for ourselves. Not specifically in the music industry, but throughout the world.
As a shy kid, how did you first get involved in the arts?
My parents exposed me to creativity and expression in all forms whether it be dance, painting, drawing, acting etc. so I've been involved in the arts since adolescence. I was definitely drawn to music and the art of performance in particular. Rodgers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella was actually the reason I started singing in the first place—I know it like the back of my hand.
What do you enjoy most about being a performer now?
I love the energy I feel when I’m on stage. The connection between myself and the audience is incomparable to anything else, and it’s the only place I truly let go.
Green green green! Tell us about the green.
I’ve always been an advocate for colored hair. Especially colored natural hair, and even more growing up in the era of Kelis. As my last color faded (it was mint at the time), I woke up and looked in the mirror thinking “I want to go neon green.” Lo and behold I walked into a beauty supply store and the first color I saw was Electric Lime. Yes, it was destiny. Now, here we are.
“Hoity Toity” is one of our fav songs. Where did the lyrics come from?
I freestyled the hook and then named the full track “Hoity Toity” before I even created my verse, which made it easier for me to write. It's about people who don’t have the best intent, yet always wants to be around you aka the shady people, the fakes and worst of all, people who look down on you before you're poppin'. The last one comes scurrying to hang around you once you’ve made a name for yourself. Moral of the story is, if you’re negative I want no parts of your presence. As for lyrical delivery, I channeled my inner Patra. If you don’t know who she is, you should look her up!
What is your favorite thing about yourself today?
My favorite thing about myself is that I never quit. I try to stay positive in any situation and always find a way to achieve my goals.
Your IG is A+. What’s your approach to staying sane with social media?
How flattering haha, thank you! Honestly, I love to capture moments, share them and learn new things. I don’t think about my Instagram too much; I just focus on being myself and making sure that I’m communicating with my followers as best as I can.
Where do you go when you need to get inspired?
I go inside of my head. I've digested music, books, and films from multiple genres and have been exposed to lots of experiences including my own, others around me, and fictional ones. When I know what I want to create, I force myself to remain inside my own mind and draw out inspiration as well as emotion from the elements I just listed so I can create authentic songs.
Can you tell us a little bit about your playlist?
My playlist consists of feel-good sounds for every mood. The genres are boundless, as well as the eras, and consist of female entertainers that either I grew up listening to, interest me or inspire me as of late. Some of the songs are ones that I’m just really feeling at the moment.
Who’s one artist on there we need to start following immediately, and why?
I recently discovered these two artists called St. Beauty. I’m really digging their sound and approach. It’s really a vibe and I’d definitely be open to working with them sometime in the future.
Alex's Latest Release
Alex's Charity of the Week
I would love to be able to donate to charities that allow assistance and opportunity for low-income families, which in turn may prevent debt and people losing their homes. There should be more large charities tending to this specific cause, but there are a lot of great charities out there in general dedicated to education and global advocacy— like the Clara Lionel Foundation, which is actually founded by Rihanna.