You may know Naia Izumi from his place behind NPR’s Tiny Desk—a spot he earned last year when his video for “Soft Spoken” won the video series’ annual contest. But it won’t be long before the LA-based songwriter outgrows that space, as Sony Music Masterworks has just signed Izumi to join the label’s ranks alongside the likes of Yo-Yo Ma, Robert Randolph, and Hiatus Kaiyote. He will release his debut album later in the year.
In the meantime, the singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist is bringing “Soft Spoken” to the Original Tracks catalog, complementing the soulful single with a Ron Peters–directed video. Serenading his hometown of Los Angeles from a car wash rooftop on an overcast LA day, Izumi displays his unparalleled guitar-playing abilities with a falsetto to match. It’s a catchy number with riffs cleaner than Izumi after he’s walked through his makeshift stage’s conveyor wash.