Australian singer Kota Banks makes buoyant, EDM-infused pop. A native of Sydney, Banks initially worked behind-the-scenes for other artists before launching her own solo career with the single "Empty Streets." Born Jess Porfiri, she first started playing music around age eight and by her teens was posting covers of songs online.
In 2013, the Australian Institute of Performing Arts selected her, along with 14 other teenagers, to travel to Los Angeles to record an album. Buoyed by that experience, she then spent six months in Nashville and Los Angeles honing her craft, working with professional musicians and songwriters. Upon returning to Sydney, she began working as a songwriter for other artists, collaborating with Jai Waetford, Nina Las Vegas, Tabitha Nauser, and co-penning Isabella Clark's "Speak Up," which was picked as Australia's entry into the 2017 Junior Eurovision. Adopting the stage name Kota Banks, she grabbed the spotlight in 2016 after pairing with Moza on the electronic single "Empty Streets." The song went viral and helped land her a deal with NLV Records. She returned in 2017 with the Swick-produced single "Holiday" and followed up in 2018 with "Zoom." ~ Matt Collar