"Maiah Lay's strong, soulful vocals remain centerstage!"
Andy Collins, Scandinavian Soul
"She quit her job as a painter in order to devote herself whole-heartedly to music!"
Göran Sterner, Upsala Nya Tidning
"A hard-swinging, pumping dance-floor hit, tinged with a poignant 70s and 80s feel, showcasing her unique, soft and caressing voice!"
Daniel Lantz, Do Music Records
Maiah Lay, privately known as Maja Hjelm, is a Swedish 24-year-old singer and songwriter hailing from Uppsala. She was exposed to music within the family from a very young age and showed early signs of being a hugely talented singer and songwriter. She has since developed a highly personal vocal sound - in part frail and soulful, deep, soothing and in part beautifully fuzzy and powerfully aggressive - and appropriately she has approached genres like blues, soul, funk and pop, occasionally touching at jazz and rock, which led to early guest collaborations, on stage and in the studio, with local bands. Parallel to her music ambitions, she also founded her own house painting business, which she headed for three years with her own staff.
In late 2019, Maiah Lay decided to abandon her house painting business to focus solely on music, write new material and train herself in sound engineering. Several collaborations were initiated, but in early 2020 she handpicked Swedish musician and producer Daniel Lantz, (known from internationally acclaimed funk group Beat Funktion) to produce and write the upcoming singles in her own name. Her debut release I'm Fallin' was met with considerable praise, airplay and write-ups on international music sites such as Scandinavian Soul and exposed her golden voice to a wider audience. She is currently underway to release a string of singles, Like Water, Wading and Upside Down, to lead the way towards a full-length album production with a planned release in the spring of 2021. Musically, Maiah Lay has always been fond of old-school vibes, and playfully explores soul, funk, blues, jazz and pop, with a distinct vintage 60s, 70s and 80s sound.
She is currently building her repertoire by touring with her own Maiah Lay Band, a five-piece group, consisting of first-class jazz, funk and soul musicians Jonas Isaksson (guitar), Daniel Lantz (keys), Pär Engström (bass) and Daniel Olsson (drums). For smaller, intimate settings, she offers a duo with her pianist Daniel Lantz.