Kamaiyah’s new album Got It Made marks her first full-length release through her label upstart, GRND.WRK. She spoke with Vibe about her new track and launching her very own Empire imprint, which she created last August.
“It’s very important and vital because a lot of people feel you need a man to make you an artist— [that] you need a man to mold you into what you need to be,” she told the outlet about starting her own label.
Kamaiyah was previously signed to Interscope Records and YG’s 4 Hunnid Records. She released her debut project A Good Night in the Ghetto independently in 2016.
“I signed too fast, but I never wanted to sign,” she revealed. “I was always the artist that was like, I don’t want no deal. I want to hustle because I knew where I come from. Everybody does it independently. But at that time, it was the best decision for everybody. I took that L for the team and we learned a lot. It was like four years of music business school.”
Got It Made marks the Oakland native’s first project since 2017’s Before I Wake. Last year also saw the release of several one-off collaborated singles, including “Windows” featuring Quavo and Tyga.
Elsewhere in the interview, Kamaiyah reflected on the senseless and tragic murders of Bay Area woman Nia Wilson and Nipsey Hussle, both of which affected her deeply.
“He’s telling me, ‘What you mean to our culture we never had’,” she reflected on her last conversation with Hussle, a month before his untimely death. “I’m frustrated career-wise and that’s a person that was like, ‘Don’t stop because we need you in this culture.’ So, I gotta hustle 10 times harder, ‘cause other people see the long end of the vision.”
Got It Made spans across 10 tracks and includes collaborations with Trina on the previously released breakup-revenge anthem “Set It Up,” San Francisco’s DJ Espinosa who spins on “Get Ratchet” and fellow Oakland native Capolow on “Digits.”
Kamaiyah reportedly plans to being touring in support of the album this April.