Kayla Diamond was supposed to be a lawyer but fate had a different plan.
The seeds of change were planted in a dream she had the summer before starting law school. Awaking with a melody in her head, lyrics poured out in a stream of divine inspiration; before she knew it, she had written her first song, “Crazy”. “Crazy” would eventually end up as the winning song in Slaight Music’s 2015 “It’s Your Shot” competition, land her a recording contract with Cadence Music and serve as inspiration for her debut EP Beautiful Chaos. “The song that started it all – it made me realize that […] everyone you meet was put there for a reason,” says Kayla.
A Toronto native, Kayla was raised in a modern orthodox Jewish family; a career as a pop singer wasn’t something she had ever imagined for herself. Although she studied classical piano at The Royal Conservatory growing up, she had always pictured herself practicing law. After completing her undergraduate degree she started law school, heading far from home and experiencing life on her own for the first time. “I spent a lot of time isolated from my family while studying which gave me time to reflect on my life,” says Kayla, who would end up embracing her new-found independence. After falling in love and having her heart broken for the first time, Kayla turned to music as an outlet; pain and sorrow became the driving forces behind songs that seemed to pour out of her. Songs like “All on Me”, about her first heartbreak and “What You’re Made Of”, an ode to growing up and moving away from family, are two examples that would help shape the Beautiful Chaos track list.
In 2015 Kayla stumbled across Slaight Music’s “It’s Your Shot” contest and, with no expectations, submitted a video of her performing “Crazy”. Several months later, she received a phone call from the Slaight Music team informing her she had been crowned the winner. With her “It’s Your Shot” prize including a recording contract with Cadence Music, Kayla made the difficult decision to postpone her academic studies so she could focus on her music. As Kayla explains “I wanted to become a lawyer in order represent individuals and fight for those who need it. I’ve come to the realization that the task is no different for a musician. As musicians, our job is to provide a voice for those who cannot express their truths on their own.”
With her full-time commitment to music solidified, Kayla embarked on the recording of her debut EP Beautiful Chaos and has barely left the studio since. Whether backed by a driving beat or a simple piano accompaniment, Kayla’s vocals soar with a bluesy yet modern feel, something that has really impressed the EDM community On top of recording her EP, she’s been collaborating with several DJs – a cover of Mike Posner’s “I Took a Pill in Ibiza”, with Kiso Armic, has received well over 4 million streams on Sound Cloud, and her most recent collaboration with Anevo, “Feel Something”, has hit 3 million+ streams on Spotify since its release in December. Those collaborations, along with several others, have received notable praise from the likes of Tiesto, Gareth Emery, Axwell and more.
Beautiful Chaos teams Kayla with noted Toronto based writer/producer Craig McConnell. The songs are a look into Kayla’s life over the last few years, each track inspired by a different person or experience. The lead single ‘Carnival Hearts’ embodies the theme of abandonment, a subject Kayla explores throughout the EP, and is “Inspired by the concept of isolation and being lost in your own world.”
“This is about me creating life within and from emptiness. I started writing when I felt empty. It’s a revival of something presumed to be unusable and abandoned,” she reflects. Regarding the EP itself, Kayla mentions, “Beautiful Chaos is inspired by the chaos in my life. It represents that ability to find beauty in what others perceive as sadness. It also represents my life until now- there have been many ups and many downs to get to where I am today, and that to me is beautiful and chaotic. And I wouldn’t change a thing.”