Calgary’s powerhouse vocalist, Kayla Williams, is a rising talent making waves in the world of yacht-pop music. Inspired by the smooth sounds of late ‘70s legendary artists such as TOTO, Steely Dan, Hall & Oates, and the Doobie Brothers, the songstress breathes new life into the genre. With her soulful vocals and contemporary production style, she brings a fresh perspective infused with feminine flair.
Williams’ love of playful, lighthearted mid-’70s tunes with their funky hooks, harmonies, and bass-driven grooves inspired her to create her upcoming debut EP, RETRODELIA – a positivity-forward throwback tribute with a twist. Produced by Heath West and JUNO award-winner Spencer Cheyne, Williams’ layered vocals inject old soul wisdom into her music, and her clever lyrics add a poppy punch to each track. With glitter and good vibes in full force, RETRODELIA is sure to catch the ear of music lovers everywhere.
“I wrote these songs in 2020, when times were uncertain for everyone. To ease my burdens and find inspiration, I turned to music from the past, especially my favourites from the yacht-rock world. I love the groovy melodies, hefty bass lines and horn sections of that genre. I ran with that vibe while writing the songs for RETRODELIA, but I added a modern pop energy to the tracks. I was done writing sad songs about how hard life was and wanted to reminisce about an easier time and create music that felt lighthearted, playful and nostalgic.”
Williams’ new single, “Come Close,” is the second release from RETRODELIA. This summer anthem captures the rush of emotions that flood your senses when love sparks. With its infectious, upbeat and flirty vibe, this pure pop, bass heavy single will leave you grooving.
“Recording this track was an absolute blast! We couldn’t help but laugh at how much our necks would hurt from the constant nodding and bopping along. The camaraderie and synergy in the studio made the experience truly unforgettable. My producers, Heath West and Spencer Cheyne, perfectly understood my vision and skillfully allowed the blend of nostalgia and retro vibes to shine through. Creating this entire EP was such a joy, but “Come Close” holds a special place in my heart as it’s undeniably the most upbeat and groovy track on RETRODELIA.”
Williams’ talent has not gone unnoticed. She won the 2021 Red Deer Emerging Artist award, her music has been featured on TSN, and she was commissioned to write a song for the 2019 Canada Winter Games (performing it to an audience of over 8,000 people). A seasoned musician and 10-year vocal coach, she has performed at many festivals throughout Western Canada. Her soulfully dynamic vocals and fearless femininity have even earned her praise from Beach Boy Brian Wilson himself (“You’ve got the voice!”).
With her undeniably upbeat and feel-good energy, Williams offers a refreshing and modern take on the retro-inspired genre. The glittery yacht-pop revival is here, and Kayla Williams is leading the charge!