Eight-year-old Yoyoka Soma may not have even reached the double digits yet, but that hasn’t stopped her from making waves in the land of rock ‘n’ roll.
Soma — who started playing the drums when she was just 2 years old — recently covered Led Zeppelin’s “Good Times Bad Times” for her entry into the 2018 Hit Like A Girl drum contest. Her entry video, which features her playing along to the hit famously played by the band’s late drummer, John Bonham, earned her a spot in the competition’s final round. Soma didn’t win, but that hasn’t stopped people from watching her video performance over and over again.
“My dream is to be the best drummer in the world,” Soma wrote in the video description on YouTube, where she also said Bonham, Chris Coleman and Benny Greb are her favorite drummers.
“In addition, I want to be an artist who can do anything: playing all instruments, recording music, mixing the sound and designing the CD album jackets,” she wrote. “I want to become friends with people all over the world through my musical activities!”
And if people’s reactions to Soma’s performance are any indication, she has done exactly that. Some said her drumming even made them emotional, like @NornOfThePast, who tweeted:
So I've just now heard about this 8yo girl named Yoyoka Soma.
She drums along to Led Zep– and get this, she *matches* Bonham's work. Brings a tear to this old goddess's eye.
Goddess bless you, sweetie. You keep rockin' on, because Urd-sama approves.
— Urd (@NornOfThePast) July 8, 2018
Another person Soma has made friends with is Zeppelin’s lead singer, Robert Plant, who commented on her performance this month when he was a guest on the CBC Radio program Q.
“How fantastic,” he said. “It’s great, isn’t it really?! Well, I know where she can get good job.”
When asked what Bonham might think of the video, Plant responded: “I think he would be so amazed. I think he would be so chuffed. It’s great.”
It turns out that Soma is no stranger to being on stage. At age 4 she was already performing in concerts, and by the time she turned 5 years old Soma had joined the family band, Kaneaiyoyoka. To date, she has played on more than 100 stages with the group. She also plays the keyboard and performs as a vocalist, in addition to composing her own lyrics and music.
Because why waste any time when you have music chops like that, right?