Q&A: Have You Met.. ZIV

ZIVPhoto credit: Ariel Bendet

 

Where are you based at the moment, what are earliest memories in music?

I am currently based in Tel Aviv, moved here from Jerusalem three years ago. Earliest memories in music must be me and my dad playing the guitar when I was 9 years old.

Is there a big scene for the kind of music you now create? From Hip Hop and RnB  

No, not really. At least not a scene that I’m involved in.

Your seem to draw influences from Hip Hop and RnB, who were your main influences growing up

Erykah Badu taught me everything I know from since I was a little girl.

How has your music evolved from ‘Near Mint’ to the first records you released as a solo artist, is there anything you’ve consciously tried to do differently as an artist?

I didn’t try to do anything different, just tried to do me. The first E.P I released was all about love and relationships between man and woman, Near Mint is more about the struggle and pain in growing up.

You used to be a lead singer of band? How did that come about?

It was the best. I was 13 and this band saved my life as a teenager. I miss the band and the good old times. Not really into indie music no more though.

Check out Ziv’s Against The Clock with Fact TV:

 

Have you had the opportunity to perform as a solo artist in different parts of the world? If so where’s been your favourite? What makes it special

I was supporting homeboy sandman in London and it was super cool. I’d love to do shows all over the world!

Is there anyone you’d like to collaborate most with in the UK, and why?

I made a beat that I’m dying for Jimothy Lacoste to sing on!

Are there any musicians in Israel that we should be paying attention?  

Check out “Dolphinarium”, they are the best ambient group in Tel Aviv, and maybe in the whole world!

What can expect from you in future, have you got any dates booked in?         

I don’t know what tomorrow will bring but I am performing at the Tel Aviv Museaum of Art on the 10th of October!

Check out her latest EP Near Mint below: 

Q&A: Have You Met.. NAHLI

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Rising soul and pop singer, Nahli released her debut EP titled Therapy Side A early in September through ALKMY Records, the new label from from eminent record producer DaVinChe. Following the release Nahli took some time to join our Q&A series to get to know her a little better.

You have a great voice, who were your early musical inspirations growing up? Who encouraged you to go in to music?

Thank you! I was actually encouraged to perhaps not go into music initially. My mum had been in the music industry for a while and she said it’s a particularly difficult career to place yourself in, which I absolutely do not disagree with…but…I guess I like a challenge. I’ve always believed I could do it. I’ve had strangers come up to me and tell me I have a particular aura and that they see my name in lights. Whenever I got my palms read, they’d always say the same thing…I just believe to my soul that my destiny is in this. My Dad sat me down when I nearly gave up, I was exhausted by it. And he told me that I should give it a year. So I did. And here I am. My mum is so supportive. They both urged me never to quit.

With this being you first EP, and having featured on a number of Garage and Grime tracks before the release, How was the process making the EP very much your own, and distinctive to songs you’ve featured on?

I think that stepping into the solo scene for the first time is always a little daunting. It’s all about finding confidence in sharing your music initially. I have a very eclectic taste in music, I enjoy it all. I listen to rock and roll, I listen to 60s blues. I listen to Jazz. I listen to Einaudi. All of it interests me, so when I was asked to collaborate on garage and grime, I’m always open to new genres and new adventures. I have never caged myself into doing one specific thing…yet, this EP is truly the kind of music I enjoy making. I know it’ll grow and blossom into different avenues, it’ll flourish. But at this moment in time, my main priority is to share a clear message with my lyrics.

Your manager/mentor, DaVinChe has written and produced for many amazing artists, what’s it like to work with him, and how is relationship different to other managers or producers you’ve worked with in the past?

I have such a great relationship with Davinche. Firstly because I have known him for so many years. We understand each other on a very deep level which is great when working together cause we never get our wires crossed or rub each other up the wrong way. He understands that I can be an emotional soul at times and knows when to give me space and when to give me support. He is also extremely patient as I can get quite emotional when it comes to my craft. I get emotional in studio sessions at times when it comes to writing lyrics or if I get frustrated with myself in the vocal booth (I’m a perfectionist and when I feel like I’m not achieving my best on the day I get a little cross with myself) and he always just makes a joke or says something funny and I snap straight out of it. He helps me to get the best out of my vocals and has really guided me into writing my helping me get right into my soul without fear. I feel really blessed to be a team with him. He produces, helps me write, he does all the photography and filming. The editing. So much. Him and I are a force to be reckoned with, if I may say so myself! I say that because we really do try and juggle most things ourselves.

Have you explored any other creative outlets, like art, or is fashion really important too?

I have always been interested in art. I had a bit of a flair for it at school. Textiles too. In fact, I’ve recently started hand creating my own merchandise but its at the really early stages right now. Its fun though, I find it quite therapeutic. My dear friend Cameron from SIGMA gave me a bag of clothes he rarely wore and I’ve been painting on them. I share the process on instagram (@nhlimoon). I just removed the A in NAHLI and I added ‘moon’ because the moon is such an important part of my life. I often find solace with it and I go to it with my problems and issues. Or to share my gratitude about the direction my life is going. In fact, coincidentally, the moon was absolutely magic the night my EP was released. Huge, full, and slightly pink. I really love fashion, I feel like my fashion changes quite regularly but at the moment I’m really into over sized tracksuits. I’ve always quite liked having a bit of a boyish style, but I change it up sometimes. I hate wearing heels though. I literally always fall over.

The UK music scene is thriving at the moment, which artists are you listening to, or keen to see live in concert?

It really is thriving. I’m a really big fan of ‘Nothing But Thieves’. Tom Misch is my absolute favourite, I’m dying to see him in concert. In fact, to collaborate with him would be a dream. I love Kara Marni’s voice. Cameron Bloomfield is releasing stuff again which I’m really into. He’s extremely talented. Sami Switch is on his way up. Lots of great music around.

If you wasn’t making music or working in the industry, what do you think you’d be doing instead?

I’d be working at my family company. I’d probably be there, annoying everyone. In fact I worked there when I was 18 and did exactly that. I was paid an absolute pittance, I really thought I’d get special treatment but nope ha ha. I didn’t last there long, then I got into care for the elderly. I used to just sing down the corridors from 9-5. Every single day. In the smoking area. In the kitchen at lunch. I’d find myself daydreaming about being on stage all the time.

In fact once, this is totally off subject but I’ve just been reminded, I was quite young and my step dad at the time walked into my bedroom to tell me that dinner was ready but I had my headphones in. I was singing to Holly Valance – Kiss Kiss in a belly top trying to be a bit sexy in front of my full length mirror, kinda copying her in her music video (Don’t ask me why, it was a weird year for music)…next thing I know I’ve got a tap on the shoulder from him and I jump out of my skin and I had to sit and have dinner with everyone with such a bright red face. It stopped me daydreaming about being on stage for a bit because I felt like such a dickhead!

What are you plans for the rest of the year, any solo bookings you can confirm?

My plans are to release Therapy [Side B] first and foremost. Very excited for that. The two sides of Therapy are basically the 5 stages of grief that we all go through in order to heal from something. First denial (Relapse), then depression (Blake/F.Y.M) and anger (Mama’s Boy) – [Side B] goes into bargaining and acceptance. It’s s a very real process that I wanted to share. It’s the natural way in which our mind and body process grief and standing back from the EP as a whole, makes me really proud, because I remember the girl and all her emotions through each and every section. We all need to feel like we can relate to something or someone sometimes because we feel less alone, and if I can give that to even one person, I feel like I’ve achieved something really special.

What are some of the difficulties you’ve faced working in music industry, do you have advice to for any aspiring musicians?

It’s difficult to make friends, I personally find. I see a lot of people attending events in groups and doing stuff but I’ve always been a bit of a lone wolf. It does get to me sometimes, and I’ve had similar conversations with artists feeling like they’re in the same boat…so the advice I would give it, don’t look left. Don’t look right. Don’t look behind you. Look ahead and keep your focus and don’t worry about what anyone else is doing. Don’t compare YOU, to anyone else. Keep pushing, and remember that its not a race. We all have our time to shine in all of our different ways and that is what’s so special about the music industry. There’s so much diversity. There’s an avenue for almost everyone.

Keep doing you, keep grinding. And never ever give up on anything that burns a fire in your soul. 

Check out Nahli’s latest EP, Thready (side A) below:

Q&A: Have You Met… Matt Muse

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Chicago born and bred native, Matt Muse released his new EP titled, Love and Nappyness. The EP explores a range of themes from more personal topics from his upbringing as well as, promoting self love and care. Matt took some time to answer our Q&A series to learn a bit more about him.

What were your biggest motivations for going into music?

My biggest motivation to start music was watching both my parents love for music manifest in various ways throughout my upbringing, and watching artists like Common and Kanye West who look like me and are from the same place as me find successful careers in hip-hop.

Did you explore other mediums, like art, if so, do you still continue them?

When I was much younger I had a huge sketchbook that my dad bought me and I’d draw in it all the time. I also played the trumpet and piano growing up. I no longer draw, but I’m getting back into playing the piano and I want to learn how to play the guitar asap

Tell me about how you got involved in Young Chicago Authors artist organisation and what it is?

Young Chicago Authors is a literary organization in Chicago that uses hip-hop/poetry pedagogy to encourage students to become masters or their own narratives through the lens of creative writing. The organization hosts Chicago’s longest running youth open mic called ‘Wordplay’ every Tuesday and I got involved with the organisation by attending that open mic. I would travel back and forth from my college Wordplay whenever I could so folks could hear the music I was working on. After I graduated, the organisation was hiring and I put in an app and got hired, it’s the best job I’ve ever worked.

Check out the video to his single ‘MYSELF’, taken from his new EP Love & Nappyness:

What advice would you give to your younger self when you first started making music?

I’d tell my younger self to take advantage of time, don’t waste any of it. I’d tell him to be more open-minded. I’d tell him that its all gonna pay off the moment you start to fully believe in yourself and bet on yourself.

What’s challenges have you faced as an artist, and how have you overcome them? 
Self-doubt is really the only challenge I’ve faced. I work on it every day by affirming myself and reminding myself that I’m not in competition with anyone but the man in the mirror.

Is there anyone you have been listening to in the UK, if so, who?

Technically Jorja Smith and Adele, but I need to step up my UK game, I’m open tp any and all music suggestions.

What else do you have planned for the rest of year, any live shows, festivals?

Dropping some more music videos. Had a release show for Love & Nappyness and that was incredible. Looking to do some more performances as the year goes on, but the main focus is getting more visual content out for my fans/listeners

You can have a listen to his latest EP, Love & Nappyness:

Q&A: Have You Met… Compro Oro

kaleido (c) 2019 Athos Burez

One of the leading bands in the ever-expanding new wave of Belgian jazz, Compro Oro’s wayward and psychedelic approach to a broad range of sounds has gained them a devoted fan base since the band’s formation in 2014. Making up the band is Wim Segers – vibraphone, marimba, Bart Vervaeck – guitar, Matthias Debusschere – bass, Falk Schrauwen – percussion and Frederik Van den Berghe – drums. Bart Vervaeck and Wim Segers took some time to take part in our short Q&A to learn a bit more about them and how they work together:

How did you guys meet each other?

Wim Segers : I guess we met at the local jazz club “Hot Club De Gand”. We both used to be really in to Django Reinhardt ‘s music.  The thing is I couldn ‘t really play back then, studying mainly classical stuff, so I looked up to what Bart could do on an acoustic guitar, playing with heroes like Fapy Lafertin and Koen De Cauter. That was really something. When I asked him to join my band I knew we were gonna hit it of just by the way he said yes.

There are a few Jazz artists coming out of Belgium, what’s the music scene like there?

Wim Segers : The scene is quit rich. There’s a lot of playing and new bands seem to be getting formed every week.  It seems that in Ghent alone the number of musicians, venues and bands have quadrupled the last decade. These musicians are getting more more versatile as well. Digging deeper in the roots of traditional music and combing them to create a new sound

How do you combine all your musical interests together, what’s your production process?

Wim Segers: They were probably all ready combined! I mean we chose the musicians that were right for the job. But usually Bart and me write the music and then we jam it together, record it, pre-produce it and then go to a studio. The less we think about, the better it sounds. 

You’ve travelled around the world, where have you found your most musical inspiration?

Wim Segers : Well apart from traveling we probably found the most inspiration in our living rooms listening to records…or going to concerts off course. Why take an airplane when there is internet….Although, I must say I have been thinking about taking lessons abroad. Our percussionist for example lived in Brazil for some time and really got the hang of it .  I’ve been think about taking some percussion lessons with a balafon player, just to be able to use different techniques and rhythms (on a boring instrument like the vibraphone :). I mean i guess we will do that stuff some day

Have peak at their live perfomance at Voodoo Valley:

What your relationship like with your label, did you have a lot of freedom creatively with putting the album together?

Bart Vervaeck: I think our label became enthusiastic after hearing our plans for the upcoming 2 albums and the collaborations we were about to set up with 2 internationally acclaimed guest musicians, Joachim Cooder and Turkish legend Murat Ertel. They gave us complete freedom and were happy with the result. Additionally, they helped us establish and finalise the artwork of the album after we contacted the renowned Belgian photographer Athos Burez.

What was your mind-set going into this album, how did you want it to differ with your previous album?

Bart Vervaeck: I think we always have the same mind set going into the studio to record a new album, i.e. to broaden our musical horizon and expand musical possibilities. Right now we are experimenting with new sounds for the vibraphone making it more accessible in various situations both live and in the studio. Compro Oro has always been eager to search for unexplored exotic rhythms.

For this album we got inspired by certain Middle-Eastern music and West-African rhythms. In doing so we convinced Joachim Cooder, son of legendary Ry Cooder and a beautiful musician in his own right, to set up a collaboration. His contribution with the electric ‘array mbira’ felt like the ultimate touch, adding an enigmatic dream-like level to the music.

A special credit ought to be given to Dijf Sanders, our producer, and his self-created instruments, crazy synths and his idiosyncratic mixes that helped establish the ultimate suburban exotica.

What are you plans for the rest of year, any tour dates booked in?

Wim Segers: Sure! We’ve got some gigs lined up in Belgium and Holland during the release period and more coming up in February and March next year. No dates in the UK as yet.

Check out the teaser video features on their website:

Compro Oro teaser 1 from JazzLab on Vimeo.

Q&A: Have You Met… River Nelson

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Native New Yorker, River Nelson has carved out a respectable following for himself in the U.S., Europe and other parts of the globe, with widespread press acclaim and radio support from the likes of BBC 6 Music’s Lauren Laverne and Giles Peterson.  In 2010 River worked with legendary UK producer Lewis Parker and the two created the critically praised The Rise & Fall of River Nelson, described by The Independent as “full of thoughtful sentiments and a positive attitude set to infectious symphonic-soul beats”. This was followed in 2013 with The Shape of The Sky, and his third album How to Dream in 2016, followed by the EP Navigation in 2017.

River Nelson’s latest album Power, Resilience, & Joy has hip hop at its very core. Emphatically speaking from his personal experience which have helped define him, Nelson’s words offer a sense of comfort in how to revive and find joy through bad times.

River offered some time to ask a few questions on his influences, writing process and collaborations:

How did you get into the music you currently make today? Did you play an instrument growing, or from writing poems?

It really came from being a fan first and that led me to become an artist. It turned out that I was so inspired by the artists of my youth, I wanted to create my own songs. I started writing poetry a little after that. But being a fan and studying hip-hop albums is what initially fueled me to write.

Do you have any other creative outlets, like painting or design?

I do have other outlets outside of songwriting, but they still relate to writing. I write poems, stories, and articles on hip-hop history. I’d like to write a novel one day as well.

Who were your influences growing up, and how have they impacted your music?

There’s way too many to name them all, but growing up I was most inspired by A Tribe Called Quest, Rakim, Outkast, Nas, Bob Marley, Sade and The Doors.

I noticed you’ve toured with artists like Common, Talib Kweli and Kelis, what was it like to tour with them, and how did being with those inspire the music you create?

It was cool but also bitter sweet because some of those shows didn’t work out exactly as planned. But the fact that I got the opportunity was life changing, and it told me to keep working and keep pushing. Because one day you’re writing songs in your living room, and the next someone asks if you want to open up for Common.

What advice would you give to younger artists trying to make it in the music industry?

You can’t be everything to everyone, so find out what you’re musical niche is and work on developing a level of mastery over it.  Also, don’t wait around for anyone to launch your dreams or care about your art as much as you do. Put the work in yourself, create your own noise and then it’ll be easier for you to navigate through the music industry. Because then you’ll have leverage.

Which artists in the current crop would you love to collaborate most with?

I would say the main ones off the top of my head are the rapper YBN Cordae, Joey Bada$$, J. Cole, as well as his artists EarthGang and J.I.D. Plus, the singer H.E.R.

Do you listen to any artists in the UK, if so, who and what do you think of them?

Oh yeah, of course, Lewis Parker, Giggs, Skepta, Jhest, and the singer Davina Oriakhi are just some that come to mind. Not to mention, Sade and the rock bands from the UK that I’m into like Radiohead and Coldplay. I think all of those artists are super talented and they constantly inspire me.

What do you have planned for the rest of the year?

I’m going to keep promoting the new album “Power, Resilience & Joy,” play shows and work on the next LP.

Check out the video to his single ‘Today’ taken from his recent album Power, Resilience, & Joy:

Q&A: Have You Met… Kinkajous

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How did you guys meet, and what drew you to each other?
We [Adrien and Ben] met many years ago when Adrien was looking for a new drummer for his band. As we played together, we started to feel the need for something else, a platform that would have more sonic flexibility, and would give us more freedom in our writing.

Although we were very much into jazz, we were really interested in electronic and system music. We also both come from a more orchestral background and it is something that we wanted to translate in our sound in some way. The rest of the band was formed over time to make up the lineup we have today.

You have quite eclectic, free-flowing vibe around your music, how do you work as a team to write?

A lot of the time, Adrien or myself [Ben] would come up with an idea, more or less formed, and we would start working on it together. We would keep on going back and forth, working on it individually then together again until we get to a point that we are both comfortable with.

The whole process is very free and open. Then we would take it to the band and fine tune it as a group. We try to play with different mediums, tools and ways of writing — it helps us to keep on challenging ourselves creatively.

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Has music always been a big part of your lives?

We’ve all been playing from a very young age and we all studied music quite early on. Some of us have been brought up in quite musical families. When you play an instrument for such a long time, it eventually evolves from this thing that you do to become your way of life.

So you’ve had the opportunity to perform your music to a number, is there a performance that sticks out as being particularly special, if so why?

Each show is special in its own way. Our very last show in Nottingham comes to mind. We had just released our record and the spirits were very high. Nottingham being the hometown of our label, Running Circle, it felt like a big family gathering.

We were also joined by people that were heavily involved in the making of the album, some old friends and an incredible crowd. It felt like a real celebration. Music has this powerful capacity to bring people together and create this sense of community that is very precious.

Which artists or genres of music would you say most influence what you guys create?

It’s difficult to say how much of an influence they have on our music (if any) but there is quite a wide mix of artists we always go back to. Steve Reich is one of them, the way he works with rhythms, layers instruments together and his way of shaping sonic textures is fascinating. Floating Points and Flying Lotus always make their way back to our turntable as well.

A lot of jazz, spiritual jazz, and heavy electronic, orchestral music in many forms too. But although all of these influences might infuse in our sound in some way, our music is more of a patchwork of places and past experiences. This is something we’ve tried to embrace while writing Hidden Lines.

Outside of music, what do guys enjoy doing most?

Cooking, eating and good wine.

Finally, what can we expect from you guys for the rest of the year?
We have some shows coming up, and will be touring the new album. We also have an album launch party in September at The Pickle Factory in London, which we are very excited about. Writing this album has been a very inspiring and insightful process that opened a world of possibilities. We’re slowly getting back in the studio to explore it some more.

Kinkajous will be performing at London’s Pickle Factory September 5th, you can buy tickets via Songkick

You can buy their latest album via bandcamp, or stream on spotify:

Q&A: Have You Met.. Vadé

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Since being crowned the winners of Sky 1’s Sing: Ultimate A cappella in 2017 and being named ‘Best A Cappella Group in the UK’, Vadé have gone from strength to strength, scooping the 2018 A Cappella Award for Best Quintet along the way.

Made up of Jermaine Sanderson, Philip Yeboah, Roy Crisp, Joseph ‘Kojo’ Anti and Joshua Hammersley Jr. Aka JJ, the band is distinguished by their close harmonies, eclectic taste in music, imaginative R&B/Jazz arrangements and beatboxing, Vadé produce covers of songs across a range of genres, medleys and original material, showcasing their vocal dexterity. Phillip formed the group in 2013 with a vision to create a fresh new sound to A cappella music not only in the UK, but the rest of the world.

Now, having already kicked off 2019 with the release of ‘Be Mine’, the group were very kind to take some time out to join our Q&A session. As ever we endeveour to speak with exciting passionate musicians, who take pride in their craft. Have a read Q&A below:

So, when and how did you guys meet?

6 years ago, it started with Phil and JJ wanting to start an a cappella group, and as we are all from a church background, they scouted churches around the country for 3 more members… now here we are!

What were you guys doing before you met, are you from musical backgrounds, or is it a completely different career change?

We have all been involved in music one way or another since at a young age but never as a career, so yes, a totally different change to before. Some of us were at uni, and some worked in care.

What lessons have you learnt, (if any) from your last project to your forthcoming EP later this year?

I think one of the hardest things with had to learn in music is patience. Patience with the process, understanding that it is going to be a long and difficult road. We’ve found that the more time you spend on perfecting your work the better the outcome will be.

Where do you gain influence for your music?

Our influence of music is crazy.  You’ll obviously hear Boyz II Men and Take 6 in the mix, but we listen to everything; MJ, Usher, Haim, Charlie Puth, Eric Clapton, Earth Wind and Fire, the list is endless. I think it’s important to have an open mind as a musician, there is always something you can learn or be inspired by from other genres.

With five guys in the group, is it sometimes difficult to blend your influences into your music, or is it easy to work together?

Well usually we’re all on the same page, but because we can have slightly personal different tastes, we’re bound to have some differences, but we always find some common ground to get the best sound out.

How does your song writing process work within your group, will you write together or, is one or few involved in the song writing?

Roy and Jermaine write mostly, and it varies how they write, whether they come up with melodies first or lyrics, it really depends on the mood at the time.

You are still independent, how important is that to you?

I think it’s great to be independent at the moment, as it can be hard to find a label who gets you and also gives you creative freedom. Especially with backing from a major label no longer being a prerequisite to an artist’s success.

How in tune are you to your surroundings, socially and politically on a wider scale, and does that impact your music?

Yeah, we’re very in tune to what’s going on. I think although we are a niche, we try to stay as current as we can no matter what’s going on. What happens on a wider scale could affect our music, but we try not to jump on the bandwagon of hype as it were, or when something major happens… Well, not straight away anyway.

Which top three artists are you listening to at the moment, and what do you like about them?

We’re listening to Jorja Smith, Stormzy and Ed Sheeran. We admire their work rate to get where they are now, and it’s important to support UK artists, we’re only a small place!

What would success feel like to you?

Success would feel like 5 Grammys, our name in lights, and our family set up and proud of us.

If you haven’t already check out the video to their latest single ‘Be Mine’:

Q&A: Have You Met.. Idris Miles

 

Touted as one of the artists to watch for this year, Idris Miles has continual proven stage presence and rapping ability on numerous occasions already this year. Headlining at The Pit LDN’s showcase in East London’s Ace Hotel earlier in January, Idris now moves to a different stage at the 02 Academy Islington this Friday April 5th.

Idris took some time out to answer our short Q&A:

Tell us about yourself?

My name is Idris Miller a.k.a Idris (pronounced Eye-Dris) Miles.  I’m an artist and songwriter, based in Essex.  I was born around a family of musicians and artists, and I have always had a love for music from a young age, which led me to start writing songs  and poetry in school at 12 years old.

Things have been picking up for you recently, you’ve been nominated for an award, you’ve had more shows, how do you stay level headed and focused?

Yeah! To be perfectly honest, I’ve been enjoying the process so much. I’m around an amazing team who have been supporting and helping me make moves and the efforts are really paying off. I’m also hungry for more so that’s helping me keep focused and humble. There’s so much more to achieve and I’m aware of that now more than ever.

Do you produce your own beats, what’s your team like around you?

I produce from time to time but I also have some amazing producers around me too like, Ryan-J who has been my G from day! I also have some new music coming out soon with some amazing producers who I’ve wanted to work with for ages now so I’m excited. But like I said, the team I have right now is dope and we’re all progressing together like a family so it’s only a matter of time till we’re at the point of achieving big things.

Where do you take your inspiration? From you fashion sense, to your music

I think I subconsciously take inspiration from everything around me. It’s been a lifetime since I’ve said “Oh, I wanna do it like that guy” because right now I’m trying to establish myself as a brand and basically just be me… But saying that I also like to support designers and brands that are close to me such as AM By Anna Makri, Sarah Garfield , Josiah Amari.. I’m a fan of them all!

You’ve been working quite closely with The Pit LDN, how did that relationship come about, how have they helped your career so far?

Big up to the Pit every time! I went to one of their Cyphers back in 2016 and they’ve supported ever since, I can’t even express my gratitude as they’ve been responsible for some big milestones in my career including my headline show at Ace Hotel last year and my first ever Rinse FM radio play! Yeah big them up.

Check his performance for SoulMate LDN at London, Brixton’s Ritzy:

Which musicians do you look up to most in the UK or outside of it?

I love a lot of UK music at the moment, which actually makes me happy, it’s nice to see our culture on form and shining. People like Little Simz, Octavian, Kojey, A2, Che Lingo… Those are artists I look up to. Just pure talent and artistry in everything that they do! In terms of outside of UK? There’s so many names… Dreamville, Sevdaliza, Jacin Trill, Mick Jenkins, Goldlink, Tierra Whack… The list can go on!

To try and speak some things into existence, name three artists you love to collaborate with over the next couple years in the UK?

I WILL MAKE A SONG WITH A2 AND KOJEY RADICAL. That is all I will say, let the universe do its thing!

Finally, what can expect from your show at the O2 Academy Islington?

Just my essence, like in every show! Energy, emotion, passion… I love it! And I hope everyone that comes through enjoys it too! I’m just excited to achieve yet another great moment in my life and it will definitely show on stage!

Click here to buy tickets to his show at the 02 Academy Islington 

Check out the raw video to his track RUN:

Q&A: Have You Met… Ebi Soda

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Looking to disrupt London’s thriving jazz music scene, are Brighton collective – Ebi Soda. Drawing inspiration from jazz originators and combining their own coastal flavour and creativity creates an unmistakable energy. Their music ebb and flow over a foundation of rhythm, slipping into smooth guitar riffs, swelling trombone and drum sections.

Having released the sensationally, moving track – ‘Dahling’ towards the end of last year, Ebi Soda recently released their debut EP through newly formed exciting label Sola Terra. With Sola Terra’s focus on forwarding music which melts the soul and evokes feeling and intrigue, as which jazz music does, the partnership only seemed natural.

Ebi Soda are the latest to join inductee list upcoming artists to look out for, have look below for our short Q&A:

Tell Me More About Your Band Ebi Soda, What’s Behind The Name?

The band is a five piece: trombone, keys, bass, guitar and drums. But we do also work with two of our friends who play saxophone and flute. The name “Ebi Soda’ comes from a local Japanese takeaway and was created masterfully by the mind of our keys player Louis Jenkins.

You Guys Have Some Interesting Artwork For Your EP Covers, Tell Me About Who Does It And How Does It Reflect Your Band?

Our friend Azee does all the artwork. He was around from the start of the Ebi Soda saga and knows our vibe better than anyone. We feel his artwork fits our songs perfectly and will develop to be the trademark of Ebi Soda.

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How Has Being From Brighton Influenced Your music, What’s Special About The City?

Brighton is a great town to make music, a lot of resources available and creative people surround us. The music scene is getting bigger and more exciting in Brighton now with bands such as Vels Trio and Yadasofi becoming more well known. There are numerous local venues that push the exposure of new and upcoming music, which gives us a lot of opportunity to play live.

How Do Blend Your Musical Interests Within Each Track?

Each member in the group brings their own individual style of playing, and ideas can be initiated by anyone at any time in the midst of jamming or writing. We record almost every kind of musical session we have. production and mixing is usually brought together by VVilhelm, with executive production from most of the group.

Check their performance out at the Boathouse Studio:

The video is courtesy of Ebi Soda

 

Who Are Your Prominent Musical Influences Outside of Jazz, What Do You Like About Them?

Although we are all massive jazz fans and we take a jazz-based approach to our writing process, most of our influences tend to be from outside of the jazz world. Most of us are into all kinds of hip-hop and electronic music, moving into grime and trap along the way, all these genres I feel have had an effect on our final sound. The extra production you hear comes mostly from the influence of dub and other psychedelic music.

What Would Success Feel Like To You Guys?

We’re very happy with what we’re doing now, writing and performing music with our talented friends. Success for us, would mean being able to collaborate with our favourite artists and continue to create music that we love, but with even more influential factors contributing to it.

Finally, What Do Have Planned For 2019?

We’d love to do a mini tour and play a festival in the summer. We want to release loads of music this year and up our game, and start writing an album.

Check out their new EP below:

Q&A: Have You Met… Emiko


Meet the 22-year old West London singer and songwriter, Emiko. Having just released his latest single ‘Care Free’, he’s had the pleasure of appearing on Reprezent Radio and BBC 1Xtra most recently. His delicate smooth voice radiates each track he’s layered on, and he seems to have an infectious open personality which is exciting to see from a young artist. Be sure to keep tabs on his latest releases this year.

Emiko answered a short Q&A below:

How long have been making music, and what got you into music?

I have been making music my whole life, As a child, I would write songs that I never finished or that never materialized, some consisting of only 3 lines of a verse, a chorus or just a melody. I would say though that in the last year is when I starting making and finishing music that I was proudly calling my own. I always get asked what got me into music and to be honest I can’t really remember life without music involved. I always joke and say that I probably came out of my mother’s womb crying in tune(ish). I have just always been singing, I just love it and its a very important part of who I am.

Where do you take inspiration from?

I take inspiration from anything. My own sorrow or happiness, other peoples sorrow and happiness, the way in which people interact with each other, human experiences, it’s all about emotion. I grew up listening to a vast array of music. Rock, Soul, RnB, Disco, Hip Hop, Pop, Country. If I like something and it resonates with me, I am going to listen. My inspirations include Michael Jackson, Lauryn Hill, Otis Redding, Brandy, Frank Ocean, Sam Cooke, Adele, Usher, Chris Brown, New Edition, Whitney Houston. The list really goes on.

What’s the message behind your recent track; Care Free, how were you hoping people would take it

Care Free is a song that explores the power of music and love. Almost everyone has experienced that moment when you hear a song and it takes you back to a specific moment in your life, the memories unfold and you are almost transported back to that moment in time. It might not even be a moment concerning love, maybe death, nonetheless it leaves you with Goosebumps! I wanted to tell that story from my own experience.

Have a listen ‘Care Free’ Below:

What are your five favourite RnB records?

1. Michael Jackson – Remember The Time
2. Mario – Let Me Love You
3. SWV – Weak
4. Lauryn Hill – Ex-Factor
5. New Edition – Can You Stand The Rain

Which five artists would you most like to collaborate with?

1. Kaytranada
2. Pharrell Williams
3. SZA
4. Octavian
5. Disclosure

Have a listen to his first single ‘Is it Real’: