If you don’t know who Khalid is, well I’m here to tell you.
Khalid Robinson (better known by mononym Khalid) is a 19-year-old R&B singer from El Paso, TX. His debut album, American Teen peaked at #9 on the Billboard 200, and his lead single “Location” is currently peaking at #38 on the Billboard Hot 100.
Since his mother was in the U.S. Army chorus, Khalid frequently moved across the country, and even overseas. Finally, he made it to El Paso, TX during his senior year of high school, the place he now considers to be his home.
To me, what makes Khalid so special is the fact that his music is so soulful and youthful, yet he’s only 19. When you’re listening to his music it’s hard to believe he only graduated high school in August 2016. He sings about love and heartbreak in such a modern way, he is definitely an artist made for this generation.
He describes his lead single “Location” as, “…a story of young love. The kind of love that you would travel all over the country to find. It’s just a story of searching for something that we all want in life no matter who we are and that’s a real genuine lover, but it doesn’t come easy.” The song itself has an infectious beat and a catchy chorus that is guaranteed to get stuck in your head. He says in the song “I don’t wanna fall in love off of subtweets, so let’s get personal.” Singing about subtweets is something a lot of teens in this day and age can also relate to, which is why to me he’s such a great up and coming voice for this generation.
In my personal favorite song of his, “Coaster”, Khalid sings a ballad of heartbreak. “Maybe you weren’t the one for me, but deep down I wanted you to be” he croons, tugging on your heart strings. It’s songs like these that show his maturity, both vocally and personally.
Meanwhile in other songs like “Young, Dumb, & Broke” he sings about a situation that is all too relatable, being young, dumb, and well, broke. While listening to the album for the first time, this is the first song that immediately caught my eye, I instantly knew it would become one of my favorites. It’s carefree, fun, and full of life. What’s not to love?
Citing influences such as Frank Ocean, Father John Misty, and Alt-J, Khalid provides soulful R&B music with a unique and modern twist. If you haven’t already, I definitely recommend giving his debut album American Teen a listen. You won’t regret it.