Kali Uchis, full name Karly-Marina Loaiza, was born in Alexandria, Virginia, also spending a lot of time in Colombia, where her father is from. In high school, she often skipped classes to spend time at the photo lab making experimental short films, where her interest in photography led her to creating mixtape cover art.
After skipping class and breaking her parents‘ curfew, Kali got kicked out of her home in her adolescence, which led to her living in her car. During that time, she wrote poetry and songs, though she didn’t initially intend to sing, being more interested in directing films than being in the spotlight. Obviously, life had other plans.
Shortly after graduating high school, Uchis released her debut mixtape, Drunken Babble, on August 1, 2012. That was followed by her debut EP, Por Vida, which she released three years later. In 2018, Uchis released her debut studio album, Isolation, to widespread acclaim, which she followed with her first Spanish language project, Sin Miedo (del Amor y Otros Demonios) in 2020. This album spawned the single “Telepatía,” which became her first solo charting hit on the US Billboard Hot 100.
Following a lip-sync challenge on TikTok, the song saw a surge in popularity in early 2021. Before being issued as a single, the song debuted inside the top 10 of Billboard‘s Hot Latin Songs chart and later reached the top of the chart. The song also reached number 3 on Spotify’s US Top 50 and number 2 on the service‘s Global Top 50, peaking at number 25 on the Billboard Hot 100.
In 2021, Kali Uchis won her first Grammy Award for Best Dance Recording for her feature on Kaytranada‘s single “10%.” Now, she is gearing up to go on tour with Tyler, The Creator, Vince Staples, and Teezo Touchdown for the Call Me If You Get Lost Tour in 2022.