Toya Delazy is a South African singer, rapper and pianist from KwaZulu-Natal. After leaving her country in search of a better life in London, the young artist quickly became jaded with how capitalism and elitism drained the life and soul out of everyone. Her struggle to make sense of this was the motivation behind writing "Diamonds In The Rough", her latest single, the video for which shows her and her friends on various parts of their journey to affirm their inner strength.
"I wrote this song when I was at my most rock bottom place in my life, and I wanted to challenge elitism and the expectations put on the new generation in this industrial society," Delazy explained. "I was in London, living in a shitty flat, and when I looked around in the city, all I could see was robots, working 12hrs a day, living in shoe-boxes, getting by by going mental during week-ends, because that's all you can do: earning to spend, and not creating anything of value, financing an already 'fucked-up" system... The only thing that kept me going was to be surrounded by all my mates. We all have the same story, we left our countries, families and friends behind, to seek a better life in the big city. We are clean slates, literally starting life again from scratch, with no privilege whatsoever. This is kind of our story."
Check out the powerful video below!:
Directed by Laura Henry
Tattoo artist: Laura Grove
Featuring Toya Delazy and Mthokozisi Khanyile "Emkay"
Shot at the London Cocktail Club in Shoreditch
Styled by A Child of The Jago and Toya.
Photos via Laura Henry