Tiny Habits at Studio TD: A Trio Whose Unparalleled Vocalization Has Created a Folk-Pop Music Group Like No Other

Imagine meeting your three best friends in post-secondary school, sharing and exploring mutual passions during the dawn of adult life and two years later turning friendly amusement and aimless conversation into a full-blown career and lifeline. Standing on stage, hand-in-hand in front of a venue of sardined-audience members was such a journey of the ever-growing, Tiny Habits. 

Tiny Habits, an acoustic-folk trio of pure vocal harmony, is composed of three Berklee College of Music students, Maya Rae, Cinya Khan, and Judah Mayowa out of Boston, MA. The affable ensemble was formed in 2022 at the hands of an arbitrary exchange on Instagram. The bandmates’ quirky remarks on how to properly load the toilet paper holder in their dorm room bathrooms comfortably evolved into friendly discussion surrounding music. It wasn’t long before the three were sitting in Rae’s room harmonizing to karaoke tracks. Not Rae, Khan or Moyowa would have anticipated what the seemingless formation of this friendship would later entail. 

As their bond strengthened and their sound enriched, the trio quickly fell into the music industry. They released a handful of well-received TikTok videos, featuring covered songs by artists Kelly Clarson, Carly Rae Jepsen, Kacey Musgraves and many others. With an ambience like that of Crosby, Stills and Nash, the group has since sunk into their own creative endeavours, writing songs alongside one another and slowly letting the world into the harmonious sound of Tiny Habits. 

The Little Bit Farther Tour’s superlative vocalization seasoned with deeply rooted technique and musicality, enriched Montreal’s Studio TD last Wednesday, April 10th. Rammed with travelling fans from New York, New Jersey, and even a true “Hab” all the way from London, England, the audience ranged from giddy middle and high-schoolers to millennials, and even a handful of boomers who quietly sat towards the back. 

As warmhearted and ‘Honest’ show opener, Beane, triumphantly closed his set with a tear-jerking acapella rendition of Louis Armstrong’s "What A Wonderful World,” fans' applause erupted into fulfilled bells and whistles. Beane’s performance was the perfect precursor to the tour's main event as the singer’s sound openly welcomed unfamiliar and familiar listeners into Tiny Habits’ wholesome tone. 

As Rae, Khan and Moyowa made their way to center stage in dim warming light, the trio opened with “Circling.” I have never personally seen an audience so immediately fixated on a performance with no overtaking of excitement, no hooting and hollering out of sheer joy. Evidence of amazement came from the astonishment plastered on the faces of listeners. There was a collective inhale from the crowd as the piece came to an end. The slow fade of the band, Khan’s light guitar strums and the three singers’ decreasing volumes enunciated the complete silence of the room. This shock and awe came as a result of the entrancing sound that exudes from Tiny Habits. 

As fans regained their sense of awareness, the trio's smiles were illuminated. As the group took a moment to pause to converse with the audience, they spoke of the significance of this first headlining tour and Montreal being their second-last North American stop. Rae revealed,  “It's okay if people don’t show up,” in reference to what the group anticipated for their musical shuttle across live performance venues. Needless to say, Tiny Habits were happily put in their place as their false expectations were corrected. 

During their most recognized cover and hot track from their EP Tiny Things, the singers’ live performance of “Landslide” filled the room with voices from the audience. Not only were people singing along to the lyrics; but they were also following the same rhythmic adjustments the group had reverberated to make the song their own in contrast to Fleetwood Mac’s 1975 original. 

Further on in their set, Rae’s voice flourished in her vocal runs during “One More”, while Khan and Mohawa’s stillness in harmony turned on audience water-works during the group’s newer release, “Mudroom.” 

While Rae announced that the band “had no more music to play” the stage began to dim and she laughed, “Don’t ask for anymore guys” as the group's close was signalled. Fans were happy the group's bad habit of lying in their closing held true. Tiny Habits went onto encore with “Pennies” and “Tiny Things,” leaving not one heart in the audience untouched by their heart-wrenching lyricism.

Watching the three focus so deeply on listening to one another truly creates a new form of artistic performance. Not only is the sound of Tiny Habits nothing but natural and skillful talent, Rae, Khan and Mohawa’s ability to listen and combine each other's voices into one entity truly allows the group to exist as a nuanced phenomenon.