Get to know ZELIE, a fresh new artist from Sydney, who recently dropped her first ever single ‘Higher’.
Co-penned by Justin Eltakchi and producer Joseph de la Hoyde, the track deals with dark times in ZELIE’s life, when she felt that she “just wasn’t enough”.
But from the darkness came the light and ‘Higher’ is the result.
To celebrate its release, we dig a little deeper into the world of ZELIE and find out just what makes her tick with our latest feature.
01. Name : ZELIE.
02. Where are you based? Sydney.
03. How did you get your start in music? I started singing when I was five years old and I began performing live at the age of 16. When I turned 18, I started gigging in local pubs, at weddings and corporate events.
Over the last seven years I have been developing my songwriting and artistry, collaborating with other artists, songwriters and producers in Sydney whilst working on perfecting my sound.
04. Give us five words to best describe you as an artist. Innovative, spiritual, raw, edgy, changeable.
05. Tell us a little bit about your sound and how it developed. I am a massive fan of experimenting, and I can confidently say that is how I developed my sound. Being authentic is extremely important to me. I was a very shy child growing up and spent many years locking myself in my room singing my heart away and experimenting with different sounds in my voice.
06. What’s your earliest musical memory? When I was about five years old my mum and dad would wake up early hours of the morning on the weekend to clean the house. My mum would blast music while she was cleaning. I remember her playing The Pretenders and Oasis; that’s when I discovered music.
Not long after that my parents bought me a tape player and I discovered that I could record my voice over tapes. One day I thought it would be a fantastic idea to record over my parents favorite tapes and pretend I was a radio host of my own show! I then introduced a guest artist (which would be myself) and I would sing a song. I taught myself how to sing by listening back to my recordings and correcting the parts where I didn’t hit the right notes.
07. Who have been your musical influences? My influences come from different decades. I love me some old school Ray Charles, Nina Simone. I am also a massive ’90s girl fan; Nelly Furtado, Erykah Badu. Massive Attack and Rihanna have also been a strong influence for me.
08. What are your favourite songs of all time? Massive Attack – ‘Teardrop’, Fleetwood Mac – ‘Dreams’, Erykah Badu – ‘On & On’.
09. Where’s your favourite place to listen to music? When I’m commuting, I love listening to music when I’m on a flight, in the car, walking home. I feel as though the whole world has stood still and it’s just me and the music.
10. Who are your go-to artists when you’re feeling :
Sad? James Blake.
Introspective? Little Dragon or Massive Attack.
Exhausted? I’ll usually put meditation music on or something calming.
11. What was the first album you ever bought? Spice Girls haha!
12. Give us a little fun fact about yourself that people might not know. I used to live in The Netherlands and speak a little Dutch. I rescue, foster, and re-home animals.
13. What would your chosen career be if music wasn’t an option? Definitely a career in the arts. A visual artist or fashion design.
14. What’s the best advice you’ve been given in your career? A good friend of mine who is a fashion designer once said ‘Never strive for perfection with your art, you will never be content’. That advice has followed me everywhere when I’m creating.
15. What’s been the highlight of your musical journey so far? Meeting and collaborating with talented musicians and learning from them. It’s extremely inspiring and such a magical feeling when you get together with other like minded people and create something amazing.
16. What’s been the strangest experience you’ve had in the business? A good friend of mine has invited me on tour In the past for several A-list acts that have visited Australia. It was kind of strange to see some of them face to face in different types of settings, I got to see first hand how crazy and weird fans can get when their around their favourite artists.
17. If you could trade places with any artist in the world right now, who would it be? Lizzo! That girl is on fire right now and I just love her positivity and how uplifting she is!
18. Tell us about your debut release. ‘Higher’ reflects upon a time when I was experiencing dark and tough decisions. A gravitation towards the murky colors of my mind and unappealing relationships.
Times when I had low self-esteem, a time when I felt that I just wasn’t enough. Pictures of plastic perfect fashion models, made me hide myself – ‘my reflection, imperfections’ but also held me captive to circumstances.
Souls around me had no obligation, no care, no consideration. I had to find my way back, turn around and find myself – my inner peace. ‘Higher’ is about the journey it took to get out of the darkness into place of clarity.
19. What do your future plans involve? I’ve been working on more music and I just finished another single that I’ll be releasing soon. I’m currently working towards an EP. I also come from a family of fashion designers and I’m looking at starting my own label in the near future.
20. Where can our audience catch you live? TBA.
WEBSITE : www.zelie.com.au
FACEBOOK : http://facebook.com/Zelieofficial
INSTAGRAM : http://instagram.com/zeliemusic
TWITTER : http://twitter.com/zeliezee
SOUNDCLOUD : https://soundcloud.com/zelieofficial
YOUTUBE : https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCDIj5qyBV7kbE2nJh1Nx-hw/