"Be Myself": Shamiya Battles
Production: Shamiya Battles
While the concept of ‘finding yourself’ can be a bit of a meme, it is a very real pursuit for many young people across the world and even more so for artists, who have to deal with the duality of a stage and private persona as well as develop a unique voice that distinguishes them from their contemporaries. ‘Be Myself’ by London’s very own immensely talented Shamiya Battles is an example of this exploration. On the track, the speaker earnestly calls for a return to being themselves. For them it is a place, less physical and more metaphysical where they can shield themselves from judgement in the public arena- ‘somewhere where the crowd doesn’t hurt my feelings/and I’m safe from their opinions.’
The speaker contemplates the meanings of their journey. Shamiya questions whether she simply needs a holiday, whether she needs affirmation and love or spirituality. There is no definitive answer, instead the song ends on the idea that none of this might work, that all the speaker’s friends’ recommendations are all in vain. It is a touching rumination on a well-trodden concept and is carried beautifully by Shamiya’s flawless voice and deft strumming. In a very Marvin Gaye-esque touch, the track opens with Shamiya singing against herself, mimicking the duality and conflict of the piece as the melody takes engaging directions throughout its run. This is a gorgeous song and I can’t wait to hear Shamiya Battles follow up single.