Identify: It’s Khaid’s World And We’re Just Living In It

On his debut EP, life before music and more

When Khaid was just 14, the rising star was certain of his path in life. Coming from a strong musical background, he was exposed to music at a young age and grew up transfixed with the way it made him feel. “I knew music was what I wanted to do when I was 14 but I wasn’t writing full songs at the time,” he shares with me on a Zoom call, a few days before his debut EP’s release. “I was just freestyling and I knew music was something I could use to fend for my family but I was waiting for the right time,” he continues.

At only 17, Khaid is now living out his dreams. The Lagos-based artist is among the new vanguard of Afropop stars who are changing the game and re-inventing the status quo. In the last three years, he’s been able to master his art which landed him a recording deal with Neville Records, a new record label owned and managed by internet sensation and comedian Sydney Talker.


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With no gimmicks to his game, Khaid continues to attain new levels in his career. After gaining the attention of music lovers and industry heavyweights alike, following the release of “With You,” the singer/rapper continued to peel back the layers to his artistry and seal his position in our hearts and ears. His second release, the Mage-produced Afro-trap record “Ski”, put on display his rapid-fire abilities. Over the song’s catchy production, Khaid recounts real life tales and sings about his arduous come-up before the fame.

There’s no denying that social media has also played a huge role in Khaid’s career. The choruses and hooks of his songs have populated social media timelines from Instagram to TikTok, taking Khaid on a journey from relative obscurity to full-blown superstardom. It was the release of his first-ever single, “With You” that landed his music land in the right hands and earned him his record deal. Now, after giving us a solid introduction into what he has to offer, Khaid is preparing for his next level: the release of his debut album ‘Diversity.’

The 6-track project finds Khaid operating within different sonic planes, while broaching on coming of age themes such as romance, the circumstances of his upbringing, self-assurance and more. With his debut, the rising star is on a mission to convert more people to Trap believers. Speaking about this, he shares: “The music I make and everything I do is to inspire more people that are making trap music. I’m not saying I’m the pioneer or anything, I just want more trap artists to do more and believe in the sound.”

Following its release, we caught with the singer/rapper to learn more about the process behind making his debut EP, his early stages of his career and his plans for the future.

Our conversation, which follows below, has been lightly condensed and edited for clarity.

NATIVE: Can you talk to me a little about your background and what growing up was like?

Khaid: Well, I’m actually from a family of 8 children. My parents have always been music heads as well and they both listen to different genres of music. My mum has always been into Rock music while my dad was more into Fuji. At first it was a bit of a hassle but overtime, they realised music was something I wanted to do so they had no choice but to support me. 

NATIVE: What is your earliest recollection of making music?

Khaid: I can’t honestly remember but I remember my first full song and that was when I was in secondary school about two years ago. I knew music was what I wanted to do when I was 14 but I wasn’t writing full songs at the time. I was just freestyling but I knew somewhere in my mind that music was going to become a career but at that time, I was just vibing. I knew music was something I could use to fend for my family and still find happiness doing it but I was waiting for the right time.

NATIVE: What other genres were you exposed to growing up?

Khaid: I was exposed to Rap music. I listened to a lot of Rap because my brother used to listen to a lot of it. I fell in love with it. My mum loved Michael Jackson a lot too so I used to listen to that unconsciously. I actually also started out as a rapper just based on the music I was listening to and that was the easiest way for me to express myself. However, as time went by, I started putting melodies into my music.

NATIVE: How has the industry been treating you since you signed to a new label?

Khaid: First of all, I feel blessed because it’s been a good and long journey for me. “With You” is my first song ever in my life. I’ve never released a song ever, so for the song to be this big and go this far, it only gave me some sort of motivation that I can do anything. Going by my first, I’m certain the next ones will definitely be better. The love I’ve been getting has really made me so grateful.


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NATIVE: Will you say having a label backing is important? And why?

Khaid: Having a label backing you is important but what’s more important is having matured minds behind you. If you don’t have people that believe in your video, it’ll be difficult to progress. My label isn’t just a label to me, it’s family. I know a lot of people say this a lot but my label is very special to me, I see them as my older brothers most of the time because to me it’s more of a family than a record label.

NATIVE: Now let’s talk about the music itself. What themes and topics do you consider when creating your music?

Khaid: My story, the struggles I’ve faced and all I’ve been through most times are some of the topics I draw from when I’m creating music. The mood, my environment, everything around me at that point becomes a topic to me but most times, it’s my past stories. 

NATIVE: How would you define your sound? And what inspires your sound?

Khaid: I honestly cannot define my sound right now because I’m still exploring different sounds. I don’t want to box myself into anything and end up doing something different in the next months or years to come but right now, I’m sticking to the afro-trap genre which my team and I are trying to create and take forward in this part of the world but I’m surely going to expand, the change is inevitable so the sound will definitely evolve.

NATIVE: You broke into the industry with the record “With You”.  what are some of the things you learnt about landing the perfect hit song? Did you expect the song to blow up this much?

Khaid: Nah, I didn’t. I had a little bit of anxiety about what if people don’t like my song, what if people don’t vibe with me, what if people don’t think it’s a good song. I’ve never released a song before so doing this, it’s my first song and now I’m gonna be releasing it to a wider range of people, not a small range of people but I don’t know how they’re going to accept it. I have faith and I know that as long as I have faith everything will work out just fine. We had to do the promotion right, the melody and the lyrics right, that’ll make people vibe with my song. That was enough for me to feel calm about releasing the song. 

NATIVE: Would you say that song has built your confidence a lot

Khaid: Yes definitely. “With You” breakthrough gave me a type of vibe that now I have my stuff together and I can actually show people what I’m capable of in terms of music. 


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NATIVE: You’re currently working on a project. How has creating your debut project been in such a stressful and uncertain time

Khaid: Creating songs is always fun. I’ve never had a sad time making music. The process of writing lyrics to the recording and mastering. There might be times where someone doesn’t like it or some people just have opinions. You might feel a bit down but you have to go harder. You can’t just believe only in your own thoughts, it’s good to have people around that can correct you. Sometimes i might be feeling a song that is not nice but i think it’s nice but having the right people around me they tell me the truth. Having people in the studio makes the creating process fun for me. 

NATIVE: Your debut EP is out next month, what is the story behind the creation of this album. 

Khaid: Yes. Love. The EP is filled with love songs and groovy songs. Emotional trap songs too. 

NATIVE: What is a defining motto in your life and in your music?

Khaid: Believing that life is spiritual. I believe that it is spiritual in the sense that everything you’re doing you can find God and peace in it. It’s going to pay off and become something that everybody will want to imitate one day. 

NATIVE: How does it feel to be a part of the new vanguard of afro pop superstars right now 

Khaid: I feel really blessed and I feel really happy. It’s a dream come true for me. This is my first single so I wasn’t thinking I would be everywhere. I was limiting myself. I was scared mostly and I didn’t think I was going to make it this far. It’s a blessing and I thank God. 

NATIVE: How do you see your career evolving in the next few years 

Khaid: I see myself making amazing music, a bigger version of what I am now. I see myself dominating, learning new things and unlearning some things. 

Featured Image Credits/NATIVE