Tama Gucci Could Be the Voice Miami R&B Needs

Tama Gucci offers Miami a fresh sound.
Tama Gucci offers Miami a fresh sound.
Photo by Ben Guzman

South Florida has never been the warmest place for male singers. We may have gotten our fix from Pleasure P and Pretty Ricky, but lately, South Florida has suffered from a distinct lack of great voices and exclusive styles when it comes to the male R&B vocalist.

If ever there were a reason to be optimistic, though, it's El Portal native Tama Gucci (real name Kymani Floyd), a fresh new voice whose minimalistic fashion sense and model looks complement a peculiar voice that's filling the gaping void of male R&B singers in the area. 

Scrolling through Tama Gucci’s Instagram, you’ll find a few things: a 19-year-old employee of the Lincoln Road American Apparel with great taste in style, a budding artist trying to find his voice, a capitalized reminder to "DO BETTER," and an alternative R&B sound like no other in the 305. His start in music began with a notebook and a school project. “I've always had a book where I would write down songs and add melodies to them when I would hear an instrumental,” he says. But when a school assignment required him to lay down a full track, it dawned on him that songwriting could be more than just a hobby. “I started recording when I had to do a school project. My mom brought me a loop system, and I had no idea I could connect it to my computer and use it to record songs on garage band."

Once Tama Gucci figured out how to use a USB cable, the magic began and the music started to flow. His first song — recorded for that school project — was called “Aren't Mines." It was a slow burn, beautiful and airy — almost like Lana del Rey fused with Frank Ocean. His voice — Gucci's strongest asset — is flexible, allowing him to glide easily over a spectrum of styles. He lets that voice do all the work on tracks like "really into you..." where Gucci weaves a simple refrain over five minutes of breezy synth. 

The vibrations continue with his latest release, “Boys Cry Too,” which tackles hypermasculinity while the vocalist hums softly over a feathery beat. "'Boys Cry Too' is about the downfall of hypermasculinity, and boys and men being afraid to look anything other than hard and masculine all the time. Men often hold in their feelings, as if it’s not normal to have them."

But Gucci lets his feelings free on his newest single, opting to take the more creative path rather than masking his pain with a manly boy’s night out or talking shit on Twitter. “I want everyone to know that it's OK to cry. We all have feelings — especially boys — and we all need help sometimes. It's OK to be vulnerable and open.”

The street for underground male alternative R&B is wide open, and Tama Gucci is riding in the fast lane because his genre lacks risk takers. “I feel as if so many people aren't pushing the boundaries at all and [are] keeping it very standard — talking about love, heartbreak, or sex, when in reality, there’s a lot more we can talk about,” he says. 

Tama Gucci plans to continue to exorcise these touchy subjects through a 23-track mixtape he hopes to drop in 2017. He also wants to explore his talents onstage. “I plan to perform a few shows next year, and with that, I'll hopefully get more people into R&B in South Florida and inspire some people to push the boundaries when it comes to alternative music.”


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