Spotlight: Mali Hayes

With comparisons drawn to the likes of Erykah Badu and Poppy Ajudha, it’s time to get to know Manchester’s Mali Hayes a little bit better.

Maya Radcliffe
  • By Maya Radcliffe
  • 22 Jul 2020
  • min read

Mali Hayes comes from a bonefide musical family and has been dabbling in music since she was an early teen.

With a producer mother, a father who’s a singer and classical musician grandparents, it’s no surprise that her own love of creating has emerged.

With new music peering over the horizon, we want to get to know Mali a little better, and think you should too.

Read all about her.


Mali Hayes.


A British neo-soul artist.

From where?


What’s the story?

Fresh from completing a degree at Leeds College of Music, Mali Hayes joined Gilles Peterson and Brownswood Studios’ Future Bubblers talent discovery programme. Clearly tipped for big things, in 2016 Jamie Cullum selected her single Jump for his BBC Radio 2 show.

Gilles Peterson later lauded her talents on BBC 6 Music, saying: ‘I was fortunate enough to play demos on my shows here at the BBC by Amy Winehouse, Lily Allen, Erykah Badu and Jill Scott. This is another one I think I’m going to be proud of in a few years. Remember the name, Mali Hayes.’

Since then, she’s received Help Musicians UK backing, performed alongside Bubblers’ equals Elsa Hewitt and Lewis Ashley and supported Bilal, Jamila Woods, Tokio Myers (Britain’s Got Talent), Yazmin Lacey, Poppy Ajudha, Alfa Mist and more.

Fast forward to 2020, via a killer collab with Foreign Beggars and Maverick Sabre, and Mali is busy crafting (soon-to-be released) gems.

Sounds like?

Hip-hop, alt R&B and jazz whipped up into forward-thinking minimal soul.

Predicted to?

Pull on your heartstrings with her knock-out vocals.

Must hear?

Are You.

Watch the official video below.