Everything You Need to Know About Tiny Desk Premiere

Tiny Desk Premiere

Kelela is feeling creative! She recently released RAVE:N, The Remixes, which is a set of songs from her awesome 2023 album that other artists like Loraine James, Shygirl, Yaeji, and Bambii have remixed. Now, she’s keeping that energy going by performing on NPR’s Tiny Desk Premiere with a full band, including drums, keys, a harp, and two backup singers.

The performance begins with “Raven,” sounding like Björk with added harp. Then they play a jazzy version of “Take Me Apart,” followed by “Bank Head,” “Waitin,” “Enough,” “Bluff,” and “The High.” Check out the full performance below!

At the Tiny Desk Premiere, Kelela switched things up. Instead of her usual drums and effects, she used a harp and piano. The setup was a bit tight, with pianist Briley Harris surrounded by keys and singers Brittney Mills and Alayna Rodgers next to Ahya Simone’s harp. Despite the close quarters, they worked together to bring Kelela’s creative vision to life.

Kelela felt like she was coming home to Washington, D.C., where she was born. She gave a shoutout to the city before starting her set. The songs she played covered a lot of her music, with some new arrangements. “Enough” and “Take Me Apart” sounded different, with the harp and keys giving a softer vibe to her vocals. During soundcheck, she found a thunder tube in the percussion section and used it to change her voice in “The High.” This experimenting and trying new things really showed what the show was all about.


  • “Raven”
  • “Take Me Apart”
  • “Bank Head”
  • “Waitin”
  • “Enough”
  • “Bluff”
  • “The High”


  • Kelela: vocals
  • Briley Harris: keys
  • Brandon Donald: drums
  • Alayna Rodgers: vocals
  • Brittney Mills: vocals
  • Ahya Simone: harp


  • Producer: Bobby Carter
  • Director/Editor: Kara Frame
  • Audio Technical Director: Hannah Gluvna
  • Videographers: Kara Frame, Maia Stern, Joshua Bryant, Alanté Serene
  • Audio Engineer: Neil Tevault
  • Production Assistant: Elle Mannion
  • Photographer: Elizabeth Gillis
  • Tiny Desk Team: Ashley Pointer, Hazel Cills
  • Executive Producer: Suraya Mohamed
  • Series Creators: Bob Boilen, Stephen Thompson
  • VP, Visuals and Music: Keith Jenkins

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leo writes


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