Naia Izumi is NPR 2018 Tiny Desk Contest Winner

By: Flomo Yarkpowolo 

I had not heard of Naia Izumi prior to National Public Radio (NPR) announcement of its 2018 Tiny Desk Contest winner.

After reading NPR's article, I searched YouTube for more of Naia’s music. I was confused at first after my search on YouTube – I noticed that some of the reviews referred to Naia as a female while other referred to Naia as a male. I later found out that at birth, Naia was assigned a male gender. For 10 years, he identified as a female and currently, he identifies as a male. His gender is completely irrelevant as far as I am concern – I love his music.

Since discovering Naia’s music, I’ve listened to all of his videos including "De-transition and New Guitar" in which he openly touched on issues such as his sexuality, living with autism, his day-to-day challenges, and how he uses music as his refuge. Naia is an undeniable talented musician and comes across as genuine, sincere, and authentic. 

Tiny Desk Concerts is a video series of live concerts hosted by NPR Music.  NPR invites bands to submit a video of one of their songs and a jury of musicians and NPR staff choose a winner to play a Tiny Desk Concert. Since 2014, the contest has continued annually, each year drawing more than 6000 submissions.

Follow, purchase and enjoy Naia music at Bandcamp.

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