Just six years on from her first release, Bailey Wiley has made herself a musical force to be reckoned with, taking out the award for Best RnB/Soul Artist at the 2019 Vodafone New Zealand Music Awards. Her self-titled EP saw her work with talented friends including Melodownz and Noah Slee who featured on the EP, and the production smarts of Josh Fountain, Tom Scott, High Hoops, Smokey and Eno to name a few.
The project came on the heels of Inevitable, IXL, and S.O.M.M, which saw Bailey performing around the world alongside the likes of Charlotte Day Wilson, SZA, Ladi6, Jess B, Tokimonsta, Rubi Du, Eno x Dirty, and Melodownz, headlining her own shows, and featuring in Fly My Pretties. Sniffers described her as, “taking the spirit of classic R&B and neo-soul, and reframing it inside modern electronic production,” and Noisey said ‘Never Ever,’ her collaboration with Miloux, “Will melt you.”
Born in Hawera, Taranaki, Bailey grew up with the vintage sounds of 60s/70s soul and funk, the syncopated grooves of the late 90s/early 2000s RnB, and smooth glide of neo-soul, singing up a storm along the way. She studied performing arts in Christchurch and Dunedin and caught ears in Auckland with a soulful take on trap. Following that, Bailey decamped to Berlin to pen some new tracks, before returning to New Zealand and settling down in Auckland.
Amongst many festival shows, a performance highlight was going to the states and being the only Kiwi who was chosen to perform at Red Bull’s ‘30 Days in Chicago’, a one-month festival where she opened for Syd of The Internet fame. She went on the road last summer with Kiwi icons Fat Freddy’s and also performed at the Festival of Lights, and recorded a post-release live session for RNZ.