You are born and raised in Canada. How’s the music scene over there? Would you say it shaped you?
Toronto has always had a pretty phenomenal music scene, but I think right now in particular Toronto is killing it with music. We have such insane talent that is being internationally recognized, Alessia Cara, Drake, Shawn Mendes, Daniel Caesar, Jesse Reyez, etc. It feels like Toronto has become a city that is being watched, there’s an increased interest in who else has yet to be discovered, so that’s definitely shaped me over the last couple years. It’s pushed me and encouraged me.
Your new single “The tables have turned” is out. Tell us about it from an insider perspective. Was it a struggle?
Ahhh, you want the real scoop huh? Relationships and changing dynamics are always a struggle, so yes. I was finally in a relationship with someone who I cared about and who cared about me and saw longevity with. It was a new feeling and it freaked me out – it was exciting and also terrifying.
How did your affiliation with Emanate come about?
They reached out to my French label, Yunizon, with an interest in me and the song. I think we all loved the idea of opening up remix possibilities to anybody and everybody, imagine how many untapped, unheard-of creative minds exist within the worldwide internet. All those 16-year-old music prodigies who haven’t been given any opportunities to show off their skills in a real way. I’m so excited to hear the song given new life by a total stranger!
What’s your take on blockchain starting to slowly take over the music industry? Does it even cross your mind?
It does cross my mind, I think it hugely factors into the future of music. I’m still learning more but am definitely intrigued by how it will affect and potentially strengthen fan/artist relationships. The fact that fans can play an active role in promoting their favourite musicians is cool.
What’s in store for the future? Short and long-term. Anything we should keep an eye on?
Well, I’m FINALLY releasing my full-length album on September 28th, so I can’t wait for that. I also just finished shooting a really fun new music video for another unreleased song (imagine cowboy disco theme with line dancing). I’m
heading to the US and UK in October to do some shows, Which I’m really excited about – looking forward to meeting my international fans! And then in November, I start a Canada-wide 6-week tour with Ria Mae so yeah! Busy couple months ahead
How hard was it to start? How many people have told you “Why are you trying to be a musician? You’ll never make it.”
Hmmm, I don’t think anyone has ever said that to me, thankfully. I went to a performing arts high school, so I think most of the people around me growing up were quite supportive of the arts. I do remember babysitting when I was 16 and the little girl said: “dad, I want to go to an arts high school when I’m older too!” And he replied “why? So you can grow up to be a waitress?” I was offended but not put off – I’m stubborn so it made me want to prove him wrong. It is hard but my family has always made me feel like I’m doing the right thing for me, they’re so proud and happy for me and it makes it a lot easier.
What was the breakthrough? When did you think “yes, I’m into something”?
Honestly probably the first time I packed a room and saw people singing along to my songs. Maybe that was at my EP release? We sold out and it was such a responsive, loving audience. It was awesome.
Do you enjoy live performance more than music writing or studio sessions? Would you give up one for the other?
Honestly, they’re so different it’s a hard comparison. Performing live is so fun, I love my band and we just have such a genuinely fun time on stage together. It’s also so special because I meet new fans and get to see my music affecting people in real life, it’s so wicked to see dancing and singing along. But the feeling of writing a song that you love, literally making something from nothing – these words and feeling appear from my mouth and suddenly become this beautiful, tangible piece of music…it’s pretty indescribable. I don’t think I could give up one for the other. Maybe when I’m 80 I won’t be able to perform in heels but that’s ok, I love sneakers too.
What comes first usually? The lyrics? The melody? The beat? Don’t answer with “it depends”, please.
Okay, for me usually the lyrics. I’m always writing lyrics, my phone notepad is full of random sentences and paragraphs. I’m inspired by everything – a book I read, a convo with a girlfriend, an overheard story at a cafe, a sad memory, a movie scene, etc. Then a melody, then I take it to the studio and my talented producers help me get it to the next level.
What do you think will come out of this contest? Are you excited?
Absolutely. I think a very cool, unique song will come out of this contest and I’ll have the chance to discover a new talent that I may have never connected with otherwise.
Click here to check out the remix contest page.