From the album I Know Who I Am
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Kosi (née Akosua Gyebi) is a New York City based singer/songwriter with nappy hair and jazz roots. Although she always brings just a little drama to her compositions and interpretations, she’s more than just a drama queen. She’s got piercing eyes and a voice that’s larger than her body. But, small as she is, she won’t fit in a box. She switches styles more quickly than you can follow, from jazz, to rock, then folk, but never more than a few steps away from the blues.
She cites Abbey Lincoln and Nina Simone as her main influences, and has been compared to Tracy Chapman, India Arie, Ma Rainey, and Bessie Smith. However, despite her comparisons and influences, everything about Kosi, from her nappy hair to her sometimes bare feet, from her occasionally jarring lyrics to her now-she’s-sweet-now-she’s-screaming dramatic interpretations, radiates authenticity. “I am not creating anything,” she says, “nor am I deconstructing anything. I am neither an iconoclast nor a follower. I am simply myself, and that is enough.” She’s more than enough. You definitely want to hear this girl sing… if you can handle it.
Kosi is currently the lead vocalist of straight-ahead jazz group Sweet Blue Fire and indie rock group The Goddess Lakshmi.
I Know Who I Am, Kosi’s fourth and latest album, is a concept album telling the story of guilt, absolution, love, and self-actualization through original jazz and negro spirituals. Along with Kosi’s first two albums, Pictures of Us and One More Cup of Coffee, each of which is comprised of eight of Kosi’s original songs and two jazz standards, and her third album, Ghosts Appearing through the Sound, which is a tribute to Abbey Lincoln, it is available for purchase or download on Amazon, CDBaby, Bandcamp, and on her website: kosi-sings.com.