Mahalia Bailed On Kendrick Lamar Because She Needed To Catch The Bus
"In the middle of meeting one of my favourite artists in the world, I said, 'Sorry, I've got to go let the last night bus home.' And the whole way home I was absolutely gutted with myself."
Many of us have had awkward interactions with our heroes. But few quite as awkward as British singer-songwriter Mahalia, who once had an extremely rushed and hurried ‘meeting’ with Kendrick Lamar.
Mahalia has risen from strength to strength over the last few years, ever since she emerged on the scene with her debut album Diary of Me. Recently, she’s won acclaim for Love and Compromise, a work of jangling melodies and staggering, glassy textures, all arranged like glass shards around the striking beauty of her voice.
But such highs did nothing to protect her against the strangeness of meeting with Lamar in a UK recording studio, thanks to her producer friend Sounwave who poked his head around the door and told her “Kenny” wanted to meet her.
“I was like, ‘Who the fuck is Kenny?'” Mahalia said in a sit-down chat with Music Junkee for The Artist Alphabet, a video series in which musicians share their most shocking and intimate stories.
“I remember literally, for like ten seconds, staring at [Sounwave] and thinking, ‘what are you talking about?'”
When Mahalia did go down to meet Lamar, she had a ticking clock in her head counting down the minutes till the arrival of the last bus home — and there weren’t many of them.
“I’m going, ‘If I don’t get that last bus home … I’m going to have to walk maybe two hours to get home.’ So in the middle of meeting one of my favourite artists in the world, I said, ‘Sorry, I’ve got to go let the last night bus home.’ And the whole way home I was absolutely gutted with myself.”
Elsewhere in the chat, the singer-songwriter talked about the terrible accidents that can happen onstage when you are nervous (think pee), weed, and the joys of watching The Lion King.
Watch the chat in full below: