SAIAH was once a young track star trying to find out what to do with the rest of their life before discovering a new perception of their artistic musical flair. Their mother was an Olympian in 1988, and by the time they became a senior in high school, SAIAH had received ten college track and field scholarships.
When a tense relationship with their stepfather became too hard to handle, SAIAH followed their instincts and moved to Pittsburgh, where they utilised a $40 microphone and a lot of free time.
SAIAH now symbolises a new kind of punk.
SAIAH grew up playing Tony Hawk: Pro Skater and editing Call of Duty vids. SAIAH began creating a fan following with projects such as 3, Loverboyraceway Lostboy, and Nonbinary after experimenting with their voice. With melancholy crooning and spurts of semi-free-associative raps, this artist vacillates between seclusion and shattered love, recreating the genre in their own image.
SAIAH is now a really unique queer Black voice in music, leveraging their openness and distinct style — their strength — to grow larger moshpits worldwide.
In conversation with SAIAH – Noctis discover their relationship with music, and how that developed over time and experiences. They also uncover more insight into their recent release “ihateyouandyouhatemetoo”.
Explain your relationship with music, did your childhood have musical influences?
Music and I have a relationship like a parent and child: it humbles me, shows me things that I should know, warns me, makes me confident and so forth. It’s like a weird game of manifestation. I love it dearly.
Where do you draw most of your creative force from?
My everyday experience with life. Whether it’s a movie I watched that day or a bird I saw, creativity comes from the air you breathe and the things that breathe with you. I really love feeling safe in the community I carry with me.
The sound you create is described as “abstract punk” – can you elaborate on the genre you create and why you feel connected to that genre?
I THINK THEY GOT IT RIGHT. I loved only making abstract paintings as a child and I feel like my mind is too crazy just to be altered to one genre. Abstract art is a mix of all influences and genres. I’m just a vessel alchemising in an alchemized world.
Name some of your most cherished moments as an artist so far.
When everything started to work out, I could see my friends smile and all went up together. I always find that beautiful. Seeing my name on my first festival lineup was awesome. Getting on Pigeons and Planes in 2020 was really cool. Seeing myself grow in my artistry more. Letting my voice be vocal and free, and seeing the world the way an artist sees the world.
On the flip side what have been some challenges, and how did you overcome them?
I think art will always challenge you to better yourself, and you just gotta listen.
You have just released the new single “ihateyouandyouhatemetoo” – Can you let us into what this track represents to you?
How do you want people to feel when they hear “ihateyouandyouhatemetoo”?
How do you see your music developing over the next few years?
I have made my loved ones proud, I have come close or won a Grammy. I have learned how to be okay with change and growth to be the best person I can be to make the music better.