Phoenix native Kiana Ledé played The Van Buren last Halloween, opening for British vocal powerhouse Jessie J.
But now, the Mountain Pointe High School graduate is headlining the Marquee Theatre in Tempe and couldn’t be any prouder.
“I’m so excited. I can’t wait,” Ledé says quietly. “Hometown shows are, of course, important. They’re like a talent show when you’re a kid. I get the chance to show my friends and family what I’ve been working on this entire time in Los Angeles.”
Born to a Mexican and Native American mother and an African-American and Native American father, Ledé says she started singing right after learning the ABCs at 15 months old. She made her TV debut on “The Today Show” and performed during the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in 2012.
Ledé has been living in California since she left Mountain Pointe at age 16. Ledé was first known for her reimagining of Drake’s “Hotline Bling,” which amassed 40 million cumulative plays, and her “One Dance x Needed Me Mash Up” clocked over 3.6 million Spotify streams and soared to No. 1 on Spotify’s coveted Global Viral Chart.
To date, her YouTube Channel has generated 50 million-plus views and counting. Her single “Big Spender” from the film “Fifty Shades Freed” generated over 8 million streams on Spotify.
Recently, she released the EP “Myself,” and previously performed on North American stages with Ro James and Jessie J. In addition to music, she was a co-star on Rev Run’s new Netflix series “All About The Washingtons” and starred in season two of MTV’s hit show “Scream.”
Recently, Vevo named Ledé, along with AJ Mitchell, a 2019 LIFT act, which connects up-and-coming artists to audiences around the globe through video content.
“We’re proud to welcome Kiana Ledé and AJ Mitchell to the 2019 LIFT program,” says JP Evangelista, Vevo’s senior vice president of content, programming and marketing.
“Both artists are rising stars who have the potential to make a true mark on the music industry. We look forward to showing the world their individual talents. LIFT plays a big part in our commitment to artist development, so it’s great to expand our 2019 roster. We’ve been working with both Kiana and AJ for some time now, and helping them grow their audiences on our platform is truly rewarding.”
Ledé is doing fine. She’s headlining shows, which, she boasts, feature “lots of energy and twerking.” She’ll also offer a sneak peek into a super-secret solo project that she didn’t feel comfortable chatting about.
The six-song “Myself” features her latest release “Can I,” whose accompanying video garnered over 800,000 YouTube/VEVO views and Spotify streams. The EP shows off Ledé’s diversity. Her powerful vocals accompany the emotional ballad “Heavy,” and she trades bars with rapper Offset during the high-energy single “Bouncin’.”
“It was pretty easy for me to write all the songs myself,” she says about “Myself.” “All the music I write is based on personal experiences. It’s like therapy. It’s very therapeutic. I can’t survive without doing it. I’m a very open person. I’ll share anything. It’s exhausting to be that type of person.”
She started “Selfless” after she ended a relationship so she could learn more about herself and experience Los Angeles.
“I could only do that fully independently,” she says. “I used to be the type of person who learned about myself based on what other people say. They would tell me if I was good this way or that way. Now, I can say—after spending time with myself—I’m a very energetic, loyal, really stubborn, competitive with myself, and I’m very hard on myself.
“I’m also the biggest cheerleader. When my friends do anything, I’m there for them. I’m the one screaming the loudest for whatever it is.”
As a teen, Ledé had her own set of cheerleaders, who included Bobb Cooper with Valley Youth Theatre.
“Bobb is such a smiley, happy guy,” she says. “Even in my serious moments in life as a kid, I felt comfortable around him. Everything was OK when I was with him.”
The Marquee Theatre, 730 N. Mill Avenue, Tempe, 480.829.0607, luckymanonline.com, 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, September 11, tickets start at $41. Early-entry and meet-and-greet packages available.