She’s currently on tour with Vera Blue, has also performed as special guest for Jhene Aiko, Tinashe, Rudimental and Tinie Tempah and has taken the stage at Splendour in the Grass, Soulfest, Bluesfest and Curve Ball, performed at the Opera House together with Ta-ku, Wafia and Sampa The Great, as well as an appearance on Just A Gent’s triple j Like A Version of Kid Cudi’s Day N Nite.
Her 2016 single Tell Me Where All The Lovers Have Gone topped the Australian Spotify Viral Chart and her 2015 debut, Come Around which laid the groundwork for her being named as FBI’s Independent Artist of the Week.
So she’s definitely learned a thing or two and we were delighted to get the opportunity to hit her up for her top seven savvy tips for her music industry peers and emerging artists.
1. How did you get your start in the music industry and what has been the catalyst that’s lead you to the success you have achieved at this point in your career?
It initially started as just being a punter. I’d go to shows; get up at jams and then started booking some gigs. I was fortunate to meet some amazing people that were already in the industry that took me under their wing and have been super supportive of me. I think it has a lot to do with hard work, good music, solid relationships, a little luck and a lot of fight.
2. What advice do you have for someone who is planning their first tour?
I’m yet to do my first headline tour but I’ve been super fortunate to be invited on tour to open for some big names in the industry such as Rudimental, Jess Glynn, Tinashe & Tinie Tempah. This has given me the opportunity to play large venues in front of large crowds all over the country. What I’ve learned from this is, touring is not just a party. Behind the scenes there is soooo much more than just booking shows and showing up. Logistics is key. Think ahead. What gear do I need on stage? How will I get this gear on the road? Can I fly with it? What’s the best way to sort accommodation for my team? And then there’s the actual performance! Make sure you’re well rehearsed so you feel comfortable and confident with your show. Make sure your fitness is up before a tour and your health is in check. I could go on and on with this stuff. Don’t get me started on the outfits!
3. My best business tip for new artists is…
Set goals, short and long term and surround yourself with solid people, who you trust and who support you and your vision. This industry is riddled with horror stories of mismanagement, contractual car wrecks and dodgy operators in all corners. Although it may feel unnecessary and too expensive at the time a good lawyer is very important to have so you understand everything you commit to. Learn how to manage your own finances. Essentially you are setting up your own company for which you are the boss. Never be afraid to ask for advice from people you trust. Learn how the industry works… there’s many aspects to it and multiple areas in which you can make money. In today’s industry, you need to be more than just an artist, you are a brand, and how you choose to represent yourself in the public eye, in real life, online, and through social media are all parts of your branding.
4. My biggest barrier that I have faced in my career has been…
Without going into too much detail, I was mismanaged at an early stage in my career. This, in turn, caused a rippling effect across the board but it taught me many valuable lessons along the way and I’m happy to say all that is well behind me now.
5. In my opinion, the most important issue facing the music industry is…
Geez where do I start… trying to fund a career in any arts is no easy task. In my case I have musicians to pay, touring costs to pay for, legal fees etc. etc. so trying to find other income streams to offset this while continuing to be creative and inspired can be challenging at times. I’m sure there’s no easy answer but I’m always impressed when I hear about government-funded support for the arts in other countries.
It seems silly that in 2017 we’re still faced with gender inequality but it’s a fact. And there’s an imbalance across the board whether it be on festival lineups, radio play or campaigns, women are not given as much exposure or recognition as males in the industry. I’ve been seeing quite a few articles and breakdowns lately and I think it’s incredibly important that the discussion is there so the powers that be realise they need to make a change and balance the playing field.
6. What would be a songwriting challenge or road-block you’ve encountered and what methods have you used to work around it?
Sometimes you just need space and time to clear your mind and then you’ll come back and it’ll all click. Others it’s simply putting in the work and you just have to churn through different ideas till you have that Eureka moment. If I’m every super stuck I’ll bounce ideas around with another writer. Remaining completely open to different ideas allows me to see and hear things in a different light.
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