Ljay Currie makes his EP Entertainment/Motown Records debut with “Undercover” ft. Kiana Ledé. Slow-burning yet uptempo, the track is driven by his graceful piano work and classic sense of melody. As they harmonize together, Currie and Ledé capture the excitement of pushing the boundaries of a close friendship into something more while friends fail to catch on to the changing dynamic. Download / stream “Undercover” HERE.
The pair brings a warm, sultry vibe to the official music video, which unfolds over the course of an evening at a summer beach party. The clip, which was shot at Dockweiler State Beach near Los Angeles International Airport, can be viewed on Vevo HERE.
Explaining the inspiration for the song, Currie says, “There’s a girl I was friends with for a while, the kind of thing where she was there for me through relationships and I was there for her. You never would’ve suspected we had a thing for each other, so I went in and wrote a song about it.”
Kiana Ledé released her new EP, Selfless, last month. The singer-songwriter-pianist grew up outside Phoenix and moved to Los Angeles at age 16, where she began performing at poetry slams. Her re-imagining of Drake’s “Hotline Bling” quickly racked up more than 40 million views on YouTube and she signed to Republic Records shortly thereafter. She starred as Zoe Vaughn on the second season of MTV’s “Scream.”
Growing up in Southern California, Ljay Currie was raised on the jazz and classic R&B records his dad played at home, which he now credits with cultivating his feel for rhythm and melody. When he was 10, he taught himself to play piano by following along with YouTube tutorials. Within a few years, having also mastered drums and guitar, he began making beats and producing his own tracks. Yet as a star player for the Fairfax High School basketball team – and one of the top 100 players in the country – Currie felt pressured to abandon his musical ambitions and pursue an athletic career.
When he turned down numerous scholarship offers to pursue music, his parents asked his former basketball coach, Derryck “Big Tank” Thornton – a longtime producer who’s worked with artists such as Mary J. Blige and Fabolous) – to have a word with him.
“I knew Tank did music, so when he came to meet me to try to get me to go to school, I showed him what I’d been working on,” recalls Currie. “After that, he went back to my parents and said, ‘I’ve never heard anything like this before. Just give me a year, and if he doesn’t have a record deal by then, I’ll make sure he’s back in school.’”
Once he had built up a body of work, he and Thornton brought his music to a number of major labels and Currie quickly landed a deal with EP Entertainment/Motown Records. With characteristic resolve, he says, “I’ve come so far just following my passion, and I’m just gonna keep on chasing the dream.”