Hi! my name is Malika, some of you may know me by my pseudonym ‘Meleka’, which I used early on in my career as a writer when I was working with other artists, and featuring as a vocalist on their songs.
Though I have been active in the music industry for years, working with people like Ella Eyre, Snakehips, Basement Jaxx & Riton to name a few, I finally found my artist sound during the pandemic, and last month, released my single “Stuck On You”.
“Stuck On You” is a love song about giving someone complete autonomy over your heart, the moment when you allow yourself to fall in love, and even admit it to yourself. It is the first in a run of songs, which I’ll be releasing over the next few months, which are based on my experiences of life, becoming a woman, from a girl.
From love to heartbreak to self love to growth, these are all themes that my music explores, but from a place of maturity and understanding. I feel like, we think we know everything about ourselves in our 20’s, and then you get to your late 20’s / early 30’s and you get a whole new perspective of life. That is what this music represents and I am excited for people, especially women, to hear and connect with the stories in my new music.
“Stuck On You” was written a while ago, I wrote it with a friend of mine who I have written much of my upcoming music with, Roman Harris. It’s ironic and a little funny that much of my music is about the female experience, but I’ve collaborated so heavily with a male, but Roman is so poetic in his songwriting and we really enhance each other’s tablets when creating music.
We went through many different versions of “Stuck On You”. We dropped the key of the song twice (meaning me made it less high and scream-y lol), we doubted the chorus which has the lyric “I’m stuck on you, like a bullet to a gun” as we were worried if people wouldn’t get it, maybe it was too poetic, or if it would be too controversial.
We settled that people would get it and it perfectly explains how intense, consuming and ridged love can sometimes be. I wrote the second verse and cut the first verse in half without Roman.
I of course ran it by him, but also as a writer, it is an important skill to be able to listen to your music objectively and be open to look at it again if there are parts which need to be changed or removed. It is a very difficult, but worthwhile skill to have lol.
The music was different, Roman and I wrote the song to him playing a guitar in his flat, but we eventually connected with Bhav Knightstar, who I worked with to create the version we hear today.
Putting together the music video was an experience also, as this is a whole new era for me, and the start of something new. I wanted the video to feel and reflect where I am at in my life, career and musical journey now.
I was introduced to Cat Couture by my friend, music producer and filmmaker Davinche. Cat owns Amoroso Films and understood the themes that myself and my new music represent, which are feminine, powerful and soft, and I feel the video represents that beautifully.
We filmed in Cat’s studio because, as an independent artist, as fun as it was to be creative, staying on budget was important too.
As this is my first visual in three years, we wanted to make sure it felt exciting and refreshing, focusing more on reintroducing me instead of having a biographical video which was telling the story of the words.
Myself and Cat thought it would be more impactful to have me perform in a dreamy, open setting, which I feel we achieved. When I showed the video to my mum, she said it looked like I was time traveling, the way the looks were set up.
With the white being older and traditional and the oranges being more futuristic. I had never thought of the video like that before she said it, but I liked that as an explanation and could see where she would think that.
Hair and make-up, I did myself, and we had some pops of colour around the eyes. I’ve been told my eyes are very expressive, so we wanted to highlight them.
With the hair, I have a hashtag #TheBlackGirlWithTheFringe, because when looking into my relaunch, we wanted to find a look that I could replicate but would also make me stand out, and we came up with a top knot and fringe, which eventually spawned the hashtag, and that was how we came up with the look.
Watch the video for “Stuck On You” below!