Interview: Knyves Escobar Shares Wisdom, Speaks on Inspiration & Pushing Past Labels

On the precipice of their debut project, Knyves Escobar — who uses the pronouns she and they — is leaning into their dynamic musical talent and intrinsically strong self-belief as pillars of what looks to be a long and successful career in music. 

Escobar says the upcoming debut will show listeners that they have plenty more in store than the typical R&B sounds Escobar tends to lean on. While their voice lends itself well for the genre, Escobar continues to find new strengths in terms of production, and taste for artists like James Blake and KAYTRANADA implies the project is going to be expansive and exciting. 

In a landscape where genreless music is still being pushed into corners by media outlets, fans, and streaming services, Escobar is looking forward to challenging these standards with their upcoming album.

“I think [R&B] was mainly just placed on me in the beginning,” they say. “And I sort of ran with it, but now I’m realizing there’s so many more facets to make my sound.”

By standing against these widely held presuppositions, Escobar is hoping to teach people to believe in themselves.

“I hope they see that you don’t really ever have to hide too much,” Escobar says. “I think it’s most important to be as genuine as you can. That’s what I feel like people resonate with the most.”

They went on to say that the reason they’ve been so successful thus far is because their confidence and strong personality have allowed them to relate to other creatives and foster strong professional relationships. 

Whether it’s the most talented producers in the DMV region or Escobar’s brother, who encouraged them to continue to pursue music production in high school, Escobar shares credit for their current position with those that support them.

After amassing 100k streams on “Phantom Limb,” a self-produced track, and a collaborative performance with AMPD and NuVegan Cafe, Escobar is making waves across the music world.

Adding to the excitement is Escobar’s cello prowess  — they played throughout childhood but put it down in their teenage years. Escobar played the cello section on “Phantom Limb” and says the instrument is all over the upcoming project. 

As they continue to combine the classical with the new and innovative, Knyves Escobar’s debut album should be one of the most exciting of the year. 

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