Born in Detroit, Michigan, Malaya Watson first captured the public's eye when she was 15 as a contestant on American Idol Season 13 in 2014. She placed top 8 on the show and soon after went on a 3-month American Idols Live tour across 41 cities in North America and Canada. Following the show, Malaya pursued her solo career in music as an electronic soul singer, songwriter, and producer. Her music is influenced by her life, grandfather, and father. Malaya has opened for India Arie, Bryson Tiller, and Aretha Franklin, and has shared the stage with John Legend and Greg Phillinganes.