Brooklyn-bred artist Alex Mali is a standout artist, and not just for her signature green hair! The “Good Good” songstress has been dubbed an artist to watch in 2020 with her R&B and pop fusion of melodies demonstrated throughout her Sweet & Sour debut EP last summer. Her six tracked ‘Phenom’ EP was nothing short of punch-packed harmonies staying true to her Caribbean heritage while still pushing her limits as an artist and stepping out of her comfort zone.
Hype Hair spoke to The Blind Youth signee about the influence of her Caribbean roots on her personal and artistic style, the major key behind maintaining the health of her green queen hair, and upcoming projects in the foreseeable future.
HYPE HAIR: When did you first become interested in music?
ALEX MALI: I have always been interested in music and singing, to be honest, but it wasn’t until I got to college that I truly began to express myself through music.
HH: How would you describe your music style?
ALEX: I would say that my music is Alternative R&B, but if I didn’t have to put a stamp on it, I would say that it is a safe space for every mood. It’s very emotional, and that doesn’t always mean sadness. It can mean happiness, anger, confusion or any mixed emotion, but as R&B almost always does, it tells a story that almost anyone has gone through or imagined going through.
HH: How has New York influenced your personal style? What about your Trinidadian and Jamaican roots?
ALEX: Well, I’m from Brooklyn, and that may speak for itself [laughs]. Truly, being brought up in Brooklyn gave me my swag. My West-Indian background, well – Jamaicans are usually very loud with their hair and wardrobe choices. Trinidadians are a bit less loud with their wardrobe but make up for it with loud accessories, which clearly explains my obsession with layering necklaces and rings and my bright ass hair.
HH: What’s your earliest hair memory? Have you always been experimental?
ALEX: My earliest hair memory has to be the first time I ever got my hair hot combed. My mom was rushing to get it done before my dad got home because he hated it when we straightened our hair. Yes! I have always been experimental with my hair. If I had an idea, I would just do it without question. People used to cut my ass, but I really could have cared less.
HH: What was the inspiration behind your unconventional hair color?
ALEX: Woke up one morning with the idea in my head to go neon green. I don’t remember dreaming about it, but first thing in the morning, I hopped out of bed and walked up the block to the beauty supply store. As soon as I walked in, there was a bottle of green hair dye sitting by the cash register as if it were waiting for me to walk in. So I picked it up, bought it, and I have been green now for six years about?
HH: What attracted you to the color green? What does it mean to you?
ALEX: Green and black have always been my favorite colors. It could be my countless anime binges on Crunchyroll, but I’ve always thought colored hair was normal. In terms of representation in real life, absolutely nobody except Kelis. She was the only Black, naturaL- haired girl in the game, and she was definitely an inspiration to understand what I may look like rocking colored kinks. I don’t want to lie and say green has a super deep meaning for me. What I will say is that green was high key slept on and seen as an ugly or tacky color, but there was just a unique beauty I feel like I’ve always connected with. I’m glad green is having its power hour! I’m pretty sure I started this trend, though!
HH: What’s your number one hair care secret for maintaining natural curls with such strong hair color?
ALEX: JAMAICAN BLACK CASTOR OIL, or oil in general. Bottom line, you’ve just gotta keep your hair moisturized unless you want it snap, crackle and poppin’ off like Rice Krispies.
HH: What’s next for your music? Any upcoming projects we can support?
ALEX: I’m working on music and myself. I don’t want to say much because things change sometimes, but what I can promise is that I’m locking in and going hard.