Jhené Aiko Efuru Chilombo (born March 16, 1988) is an American singer who embarked on her music career contributing vocals and appearing in several music videos for R&B group B2K. At the time, she was known as B2K member Lil' Fizz's "cousin", though she is not actually related to him. It was used as a marketing tool, suggested by Sony and Epic Records to promote Aiko through the group and cultivate her own following. In 2003, Aiko was set to release her debut album, My Name Is Jhené, through her labels Sony, The Ultimate Group and Epic; however, the album was never released, with Aiko eventually asking to be released from the label in order to continue her education.
In March 2011, Aiko made her return to music with the release of her first full-length project, a mixtape titled Sailing Soul(s). On December 16, 2011, Aiko signed a recording contract with American record producer No I.D.'s record label ARTium, under the aegis of Def Jam Recordings. In 2013, Aiko appeared on Big Sean's single "Beware" alongside Lil Wayne, which became her first top 40 single on the US Billboard Hot 100 chart. In November 2013, she released her first project for Artium and Def Jam, an extended play (EP), titled Sail Out. The EP was supported by the singles "3:16AM", "Bed Peace" (featuring Childish Gambino) and "The Worst", the latter of which went on to become certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).
Aiko released her major-label debut album, Souled Out, on September 9, 2014. On September 22, 2017, she released her second studio album Trip. On March 6, 2020, she released her third studio album, Chilombo, which earned Aiko three Grammy Award nominations, including Album of the Year. On February 13, 2022, she performed America the Beautiful before Super Bowl LVI.
You have gotta lose your mind Just to find your peace of mind.
What you create for you, no one can take from you.
My main goal in life is to just be happy. I don't compromise my happiness for anything. If I find what makes me happy I'm going to do that. That's really going with the flow of life. As far as like the mainstream stuff, if my destiny takes me there and I end up going that route, then that's fine.
Change is inevitable. Why hold onto what you have to let go of?
Cause nothing really is and everything really isn’t.
Life only gets harder, but you gotta get stronger.
Females in our generation morals are just out the window. Materialistic things aren't life. I'd rather walk in the rain with a man who treats me like a queen than to ride in a Benz with a man who treats me like crap.
Go with the wind, you know, like a sailboat. I think that's really important when it comes to peace… inner peace especially. You can't help anyone else if you don't have it together for yourself.
I’m cool with nothing cause even nothing is something
You have got to trust the signs. Everything will turn out fine
I stopped looking at people's opinions. It's easy to get caught up in what other people think.
Suffering is optional. You’re gonna have some pain but it doesn’t have to make you suffer.
Love side, hate side, never in between
I'm probably my biggest critic. There's nothing anyone can ask of me that I haven't already asked of myself.
The way you feel is not my problem.
Is it strange for me to say that if I were to die today, there’s not a thing I would change? I’ve lived well. Maybe I have made mistakes and been through my fair share of pain but all in all, it’s been okay. I’ve lived well.
Shame on you for staying the same.
Just be yourself and wear deodorant.
There’s no slowing down as the globe spins ‘round and ‘round. You gotta keep going.
I think as a person, I have a whole bunch of different sides to me.
I'm not a party animal. I'm a chill homebody. I like to watch movies and go out to eat. That's my idea of a good time. I'm definitely able to be social.
You know how a lot of people say, 'I lose myself in music,' or 'I like to escape,' but I want my music to be more of an awakening. I want it to make people to be aware of life; I don't want my music to be a distraction. I want to light a path.
It gets crazy in my mind sometimes but the reason why I like to express so much positivity on my Twitter is because I think we all are battling evil thoughts. I think it's important to not ignore them but to try to understand where they are coming from and get through them instead of suppressing them.
I don't think I have a sad life. I just talk about all my feelings and emotions.
I have a crazy sense of humor so if someone is just trying to be rude to me, or if you can tell that someone is angry for no reason, I like to entertain them.
No music while making love... the sound of the love being made is better than music.
Yeah, I mean I'm a water sign. I'm a Pisces.
I belong to the world.I'm in a relationship with the world.
Writing has always been my go-to form of expression. Whenever I was going through something as a kid, I would write it down and I would turn it into a poem.
I just want to meet as many people as I can and talk with as many people as I can, but whatever allows me to do that then that's my main goal. It's just to understand as much as I can about life and how it happens.
Nothing really came, everything was like inspired by something.
If you look up in the night sky and see this light that's flashing colors, that's Sirius. It's a star system, and it looks like there's a party going on. What I like to believe in my dreams and imagination is, there's some of us on Earth that come from there, indigos and star seeds, who are hyper sensitive to feelings and seasons.
Sometimes I go and I'll look at people's comments and then responses, covers, choreography and fan videos and after a couple hours it's like, uhhh this is a little like...I'm like don't indulge in right now.
I had my baby around 20 and I was always working on music, but I was always working on music, but I was doing other stuff as well.
A lot of time when I'm creating songs, they're in real time. When I'm writing the song, I feel what I'm feeling for its full potential. As soon as the song is over, I'm like, I created art.
I just like being a regular person.
I think if a woman is feeling aggressive, she should be aggressive and not hold back.
After I had my daughter, I kind of got comfortable with motherhood and had time to focus on something else then I started "Sailing Souls" with Fisticuffs, who produced the majority of the mixtape. I just wanted to put out something, like it wasnt really for, you know exposure or to get a deal or really anything like that.
I'm not the type that would ask for a number or ask him on a date, but I have approached a guy. I probably would tell a joke or say, "You're really cute."
I've always been very spiritual, since I was a very, very young child. The older I get, I'm reading more, I'm experiencing more, and so that's all reflected in all of my music. All of my fans are pretty familiar with me and my beliefs. It's all about connecting to yourself and sticking to your own spirituality.
Everyday though, I'm just looking for like- I always ask people, What are you listening to? What sounds are good to you? Alot of people are in their car, in the club or on the internet looking and I just don't do any of that. Usually if I'm out and about it's because I have something to do, because I'm like a really big home body. If I'm at home, im watching Nickelodeon cartoons so sometimes I'm out of the loop with the cool music, but for sure I'm predicting that J.Cole is going to be good.
It's humbling because a lot of times people think because they are the artist or the celebrity or whatever they want to call themselves that they're above being a fan. If you like something, you can like it. You don't have to be afraid to say that so I really appreciate it and you know, to me, people are people.
I don't feel like I have to use big words or theories to get my point across. People are like, "Whoa. That's crazy" and make it into this crazy thing.
I'm trying to teach people not to be selfish. That's the thing. If you have a good thing share it. Of course we're not in a sexual relationship.
You're going to be waiting a long time before you start seeing money from it. Just really sit with yourself and think "Why do I want to be a singer?" like really think it out and if you realize that you really need to stick with then then be really focused and have good intentions on why you're doing it and it will work out.
Of course we live in a world where we have to make money to eat so that's always nice to be able to sing and make money but to do something I love and to be able to eat from...it's great.
I never felt like I left, I think before anything I am a writer and that's something that I do almost everyday. So it wasnt I guess public,but I still would put out stuff on like MySpace or you know whatever social networks were poppin' at the time.
I appreciate when people listen to the sad songs, because it's almost like telling someone your problems and having them listen with a compassionate ear.
I never saw a distinction between a man and a woman. My grandparents and my mother were great examples of men and women, and they taught me equality. So I would fight with boys and wear my cousin's clothes. I would do whatever I wanted, and that's where I still stand today.
When I find something good, I stick to it for like a month. I'm usually late on like other stuff. Kendrick Lamar, I can play that often.
I actually have a young readers' series that I wanna do, kind of in the same lane as a Harry Potter or Narnia or Twilight. I want to write stuff like that.
I appreciate all the people that can respect and appreciate my music.
I want to write some books. Books that have nothing to do with music, just some fiction type of books for a whole different audience of people.
As I got older, I really got into Tupac's poetry, his books and just learning about his life and what he was into.
Because people love music, I feel it's my responsibility to produce more of the music and to get it out to more people, so like I said, If the mainstream route does that without compromising me being happy as a person then that's something I'll do.
I've been offered things from alot of different labels and stuff like that, but it's just like, it has to be perfect. I'm not going to sign my life away.
I finished school, because I started when I was thirteen, so basically around 16 or 17, I just focused on finishing high school.
I think that's really really important, you can't get in the industry, because you want to make money because number one, I don't think money should be motivation for anything because I don't believe that it has any value.
I'm friends with [exes] and they hear the songs. I can honestly say I don't have any exes I hate. They're artists in some fashion so they understand.
Me as a person...I'm really laid back, I'm really an on my own time type of person so its just kind of like if I have to compromise some of that for the mainstream success...to me its not really worth it. I just like to sing.
I always tell people is really make sure you know why you want to do it. For me, I didnt make a conscious decision like "Oh I want to be a singer", it was like I grew up around it, I was singing because it was just natural for me to sing.
Before I had my daughter I actually wanted to do something that I could put out for free, like a mixtape, but it wasn't going to really be a mixtape, it was just going to be songs that I wrote and release for free.
I think I have patient fans that want quality over quantity. It's more important to me that the project be the best that it can be and the realest it can be rather than rushing a whole bunch of generic songs, because I could do that. I could just put together some songs real quick that I really like. I only write and I only sing for a purpose, so if its not then, it's not going to be rushed.
"Snapped" happened maybe like two months after I released the mixtape. I just like took a break from recording and that was the first song I wrote and recorded after the mixtape.
I think touring is one fo the funnest parts of being a singer or entertainer or whatever.
I always go to my Kanye [West], Jay-Z. I go back to alot of the stuff that I know for sure that I like.
I've never been in that position in my life, where I hate a celebrity so much that I want to call them names.
I'm creating songs. I do it most of the time, in the car or in the house.
With my career, everything I do is me. There's no one that handles telling me what I should be about or how I should dress or anything. I'm hands on with absolutely everything. When I'm writing a song, I'm already thinking of the visual for the song and I'm already thinking of what I'm going to wear in that visual and what I'm going to wear when I perform. It all goes hand in hand. Everything I do is just me expressing different sides of myself.
I guess I just developed more of an interest to actually be a part of the design, picking out the fabric and just being more involved. I never really considered myself a fashion person, but then I just realized that fashion is just another way of self expression and that's pretty much what I'm most passionate about.
I know like the Wiz Khalifah one, got me excited because I like his music, and its almost like you know I can relate to his music, so I feel like dang if he listens to my stuff and thought it was good then maybe I'm as good as him, you know what I mean?