Nigerian-American immigrant Lisa Yaro may not ring any bells stateside, but she's definitely a big name in her native country. Her popular YouTube channel has over 120,000 followers, and in total, her music videos have received more than 14 million views. Her style of music caught the attention of Mya back in 2016, and her contributions to Smoove Jones garnered Yaro her first Grammy nomination.
"Music, of course, is my passion," she exclusively told 21Ninety. "When I first came into the industry, that's what I was known for. But that's not the only thing I want to be known for, of course. So when I had the opportunity to expand my repertoire to include acting, of course, I took the opportunity."
That "opportunity" came in the form of the film Asking For It, which will premiere at the upcoming Tribeca Film Festival on Sunday, June 13th. Yaro will star opposite Vanessa Hudgens, Ezra Miller, Gabourey Sidibe, and Luke Hemsworth, and she plays Angie, one of the "Cherry Bombers" all-girl femme gang. Yaro also served as an executive producer of the film.
"Who wouldn't want a chance like this?" she said. "It's super-exciting. The Tribeca Film Festival is known all over the world, and it's an honor to be introduced to a whole different audience than the one that only knows me for my music."
Having been active in the music industry for over ten years now, Yaro draws inspiration from artists like Sade and infuses her Nigerian afro-beats into her modern-day hits. Her most recent music video release, "Biko," which came out in November 2020, shows off Lisa's seductive crooning and undeniable stage presence.
The video, which you can see below, has already earned almost a million views.
Last month, she also released a single with Mayorkun called "Domitilla."
And while she plans to release more music throughout 2021, Yaro says that she also hopes to act more as well. "I truly enjoyed the experience of being part of Asking for It, and I can't wait to do more films in the near future," she said. "But, honestly, no matter how much I love being a part of a film, I can't ever imagine not doing music, too."