The Austin 100: Naia Izumi Naia Izumi won the 2018 Tiny Desk Contest in part due to his truly dazzling guitar technique. But to watch him intricately tap and whammy away, it's easy to lose sight of his remarkable vocals.
NPR logo The Austin 100: Naia Izumi

The Austin 100: Naia Izumi

Naia Izumi. Courtesy of the artist hide caption

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Courtesy of the artist

Naia Izumi.

Courtesy of the artist

Hometown: Los Angeles, California

Genre: Rock

Why We're Excited: In 2018, Naia Izumi beat out nearly 5,000 entries to win NPR Music's annual Tiny Desk Contest — a feat he pulled off, in part, due to his truly dazzling guitar technique. But to watch him intricately tap and whammy his way through "Soft Spoken," it's easy to lose sight of his remarkable vocals, which conjure memories of Jeff Buckley's ethereal swoop. Izumi's major-label debut is due out later this year.

Listen to Naia Izumi's "Soften Spoken"

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