Annette Brown, Lifetime The story of June Carter Cash comes to life in the…
- Posted on Mar 15th 2010 2:19PM by Jessalyn Haefele
Describe your sound in your own words.
A clash between Mary Poppins and a rock band. Nothing too serious, easy to digest.
How did you begin as an artist?
I started to play the guitar and learned to write songs when I was 19. I think I've been singing all my life, but writing songs sort of came naturally once I picked up the guitar. As soon as I recorded 3 songs on my laptop, I uploaded them to Myspace. And from there I got a lot of good feedback from people. That was also how I got invited to play a lot of shows.
Who are your musical influences?
Fiona Apple, Feist, The Beatles, and a lot of 90s music.
What are you most looking forward to about performing at SXSW?
I think meeting people and watching how they react to my music. I'm pretty excited to showcase my stuff there, as this is the first time I'm performing in the states.
What is your creative process? As a writer, where do you draw your inspiration?
I get inspired very easily. Whether it's something that I saw on TV, or something that a person said to me three years ago, a tune that's been in my head for a couple of days, or an incident I've witness in front of my eyes. But sometimes I keep them locked in my head for a few months before I really get to sit down and write stuff. So for that few months I'm actually experiencing writer's block. But once I'm at it, I'll never stop until it's done and ready for a show. I write based on everything. Friendship, backstabbers, cheating boyfriends, love interests, death, life...it's everything that I've gone through in my 23 years.
What's your musical guilty pleasure?
You recently completed your degree in legal studies and you also own a clothing store. Do you have other dreams you want to pursue in addition to music?
In Malaysia, I ran a clothing store with my cousin. Fashion is another thing that I'm crazy about so I loved picking out clothes for the store. I was also a law student but for now I'd like to focus on my music. I think I've gotten so busy in Malaysia with photo shoots and other things related to being a mainstream artist I haven't had as much time to write music as I used to.
What's the craziest thing you've seen or experienced while on tour?
Nothing out of the ordinary. The craziest thing that ever happened was when I was bombarded by my fans in Johor, Malaysia. One girl actually grabbed my hand very hard from the barricade because she wanted a photo with me. I was in pain for days after that.
Do you think that people are surprised to find out you are Muslim? Have you come across any prejudice or criticism from people over wearing a tudung while performing?
So far everyone has been supportive of what I do. I'm blessed to have fans that are in it because of the music and not anything else. We have a lot of Muslim female musicians but never one that wears the hijab. I've never had any bad experience but if I do, I'll remind everyone that just like anyone else, I'm just a girl who loves music. There's nothing complicated about that.
Has religion influenced or inspired your music?
Maybe in some ways unintentionally, but if you think about it, because I mostly sing about life, you'll come to a conclusion that you're lucky to have God looking over you in the darkest moments of your life.
If you could have dinner with 5 people, living or dead, who would you want sitting at the table?
I love this question! Michael Jackson, Janis Joplin, Bjork, Bob Dylan and- this might sound crazy- Joseph Gordon Levitt.
Where is one place you would like to travel that you haven't been yet?
You say on your MySpace page that you make music to make people happy. What are some songs by other musicians that make you happy? Do you have a particular favorite or most personal song among the ones you have written?
I love Lykke Li's "A Little Bit", Feist's "My Moon My Man", Corinne Bailey Rae's "Feels Like The First Time" and "Electric Feel" by MGMT. My favorite song that I wrote would have to be "Rocket".
Jessalyn Haefele is a contributor from Seed.com. Learn how you can contribute here.