A. Maybe! House music has spent very little time on my musical radar so this is fresh territory for me. I'm certainly enjoying the responses to the track so far. There have already been approaches from other exciting producers/DJs so I may be planting more seeds in that garden sooner than expected.
A. I'm proud of the fact that 'Lamentations' as a first offering was done with very little to no compromises and I was incredibly lucky to have found a supportive independent label like Melbourne's Wantok Musik. They sent me off to Japan with a non-recoupable budget to make the best record I could possibly make. There I wrote with a wonderful beat maker/composer/pianist called Aaron Choulai. We set up in a tiny underground bar on the outskirts of Tokyo and wrote some of the best songs on the album including 'Uranus'.
Aaron has such a unique approach to composition but what I loved about writing with him was how we both heard things the same way aesthetically. When that happens, you reach those moments in music where you connect on levels beyond what you know of the world. That was how it was writing with him. We then took it to the studio in Sydney and my producer and bass player Tim Curnick took it to the next level by finding that balance between what we do live and what Aaron and I had written. I just feel so happy that I was happy with the end result because I'm never fully satisfied with anything I do!
Q. That project has certainly introduced you into a niche within the Electronic Music Industry. Do you see yourself doing further projects similar to this?
A. To be quite frank I had never heard the song until Lance approached me so I went into it a ripe virgin. I usually shy away from doing remakes of anything but because it was quite obscure to me I thought it would be kinda cool to give it a shot. It's been quite a surprise seeing how well it's been received as I recorded it with Lance late last year whilst in the thick of touring and promoting my debut album and had completely forgot about it until it just dropped recently.
Q. Your remake of Gwen Guthrie’s “Ain’t Nothing Going On But The Rent” was one of your most recent releases in collaboration with Australian producer Lancelot. What were your initial thoughts when approached to “re-do” such a classic?
Q. “Lamentations” is a very diverse album, one that showcases your versatility and power as a vocalist; the opening track “Uranus” being a personal favorite of mine. What was it like to create and collate such amazing pieces of work?
"you reach those moments in music where you connect on levels beyond what you know.."
A. I have a phobia of buttons called Koumpounophobia. It's more of a strange fact more than a fun fact haha. One of my keyboardists and his brother also have the same phobia. It's so strange I even weird myself out sometimes.
A. A friend of mine sent me a beautiful text message today telling me that dragon fly wings only open once. They will never close until they die. And he is right. I hope we all get to be dragon flies.
Q. Tell us a fun fact about yourself
A. I've generally been okay with seeing famous people as just people but meeting and playing with Alicia in particular was a HUGE one for me. I love John too but it's all about A. Keys for me, as in, I was an embarrassing mess when I met her. I listened to her all through high school and was really drawn not only to her voice and musicianship but to how clever and simple her style of writing and production was and is. And she is timeless which is always admirable to an artist. And now to share a bill with Lauryn, who was with me all through high school as well is so ridiculous. I'm in full circle land right now.
Q. You’ve now opened for some of the world’s biggest RnB artists such as Alicia Keys and John Legend, with an upcoming concert alongside Lauryn Hill later this month. Would you describe these as your greatest moments as musician? If not, then what?
Q. Looking back to your foundation, you originally started off your education as a Jazz artist in Sydney. How does that continue to play a role in your music even when experimenting with different styles?
A. I think it definitely plays a great part in how I sing stylistically. I like to push and pull and play around with my phrasing a lot which I picked up learning to swing and scat. Technically I was always quite hopeless at storing anything theoretically beneficial but Jazz will always be my first love. For me to sing anything completely straight the whole way drives me mental. .
A. This one is going to be a lot heavier. Heavier synths, heavier melodies, and maybe a tad more electro. It's still quite early days yet but I'm really intrigued as to where we're heading yet. The second child doesn't have any identifiable genitalia yet. Who knows? It could come out having nothing but a mound like that angel in Dogma.
Q. You’re also working on new material set to release in September. Can you give us a sneak peek of what we can expect?
"I hope we all get to be dragon flies..."
Q. Last words or a quote for the viewers
‘Lamentations’ is the debut album from future folk/soul artist NGAIIRE who stands on the JJJ’s 2010 Next Crop list alongside Kimbra, Lanie Lane, and The Jezabels. The first single off ‘Lamentations’ entitled, ‘Dirty Hercules’ released March 1st is a fierce offering setting NGAIIRE apart from other singers with her peculiar vocal arrangements and rare sense of soul, reminiscent of vocal greats gone by. Featuring friend and Future – Soul darling, ‘Nai Palm’ (of Melbourne band Hiatus Kaiyote), Nai adds an additional depth that charters bottomless profundities exclusively championed by Questlove, Erykah Badu, and Gilles Peterson. Her second single ‘Around’ released May 24th further reflects her distinctive writing style. A commanding entry into the music word, there is no doubt ‘Lamentations’ will put a flag in the ground as NGAIIRE’s official arrival.
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