Tag Archives: Artist

[Exclusive] Interview with Artist On the Verge of Creative Fulfillment: Wafia

“I just want to create things that have a breath of fresh air”

Australian singer/songwriter, Wafia, is the next artist to watch for on your musical radar. Wafia is only 24 years-old, but her voice speaks wonders as she transcends barriers of genres and sounds. She is an artist whom has created a beautiful list of tracks to develop her artistry in a category known as “left-of-center”.

“Better Not” is her most recent release, which is in collaboration with renown electronic producer Louis the Child. The song is fun, light hearted, sweet and harmless. It carries your soul through the summer and reminds you of poolside gatherings, road trips, beach getaways, and endless days in the sun. The feeling emoted by the reverbs of this track is “feel good.” It’s the kind of song you would use to sum up what a good day would be like. It’s a summer lullaby that will blissfuly take you away to its own universe.

Nonetheless, the song is a heartbreak melody about not fooling m yourself when you see true love straight in the eye and then try to pretend it’s not real–how wrong you are.

Don’t overthink it
Let it go and try to trust the feeling
You know it in your gut you’re healing
From every time that you’ve been hurt before
I see it, I see it
It’s true love, don’t fake it
You better not, you better not

The lyrics, though short, and simple, really pack a punch when placed by the duality of these two artists. As I sat on call with the singer herself, I could tell in her soft-spoken, thoughtful voice, that every song is given much love and care.

When I asked Wafia what she was currently out in LA doing, she mentioned that she was out at Coachella performing with Louis the Child and is now just writing at the moment. (That’s always good news coming from an artist; it means more music!)

Now, being of Iraqi and Syrian descent, I was curious to know if her cultural influences were ever reflected in her music?

“I think it comes subconsciously, I realize I don’t need to make a great effort to include it because I think it breathes through me. I don’t need to include Arabic or something in everything that I do because just me existing in itself is me including my Middle Eastern background… Not every song calls for that kind of influence all the time. But I think it’s in my melodies, it’s in the subjects I talk about, but only if it’s required”, she responds thoughtfully.

I delved deeper into the sound that she does embody, which is something more “left-of-center”. I was curious to know if there had been a clear defined path to this sound, or if it was something she had to experiment with and decipher. “It did take time to figure out, but I came to realize that I love a lot of different music and that I kind of want to do it all. I realized that I want the common thread in my music to just be my voice, or my story, or my perspective, as opposed to a style of genre or a style of production. It took me 2 -3 years to figure that out. To me it’s all about what the song asks for. You know if a song wants to lean a certain direction or requires something, who am I to say ‘No no no’… it’s just about finding that balance I found.”

As mentioned earlier, Wafia had a chance to perform live with Louis the Child in front of 50,000 people at Coachella this year! The artist was not scared though explaining how it is easiest for her to perform for 50 people rather than for more than that. She considers it easier because she really can’t see all of the crowd’s faces and the stage begins to feel like she is “playing in my own world”, says the songstress.

To list just a few of the artists she wishes she could collaborate with, Wafia mentioned “there was a time I would have said Kanye, but now I’m not so sure” she chuckles,” I’d love to do something with like Kendrick or even like Pharrell–I feel like it would be cool to do something with Imogen Heap, ya , like something super unique and beautiful and soundscap-y”. The artist also mentioned how she would love to work with producer Brian Eno (James Blake) someday.

To her, a lot of her influences that shaped songwriting for her were artists such as Shania Twain (whom was the first artist album she was  ever given), SZA, and Solange. Usually, she would enjoy writing music to more melancholic tunes, but lately she’s been feeling less somber and more energetic and vibrant. “I’m more inspired by fun things right now, I just want to create things that have a breath of fresh air. There was a time in my life when I thought things weren’t dark enough…but now I just want to make music that makes people feel good”.

She continues, “I actually really love Drake–his production style is really inspiring to me–especially songs like ‘Passionfruit'”.

I then got to ask my favorite questions about what color she would describe herself as and it was awesome that her color to describe herself is “desert orange” and that her fun facts were that she speaks 3 languages: Arabic, English and Dutch, and that she has a toy poodle named Khalil (after the poet Khalil Gibran).

Her biggest advice to aspiring artists would be to “be patient and make sure you really know about your career and also how you want to be represented, before you bring anyone into your project, a manager, or otherwise. And hold on to your publishing for as long as possible.”

I was completely honored to speak to Wafia, because I can tell her work is going to exciting places and reaching new heights very soon. She is “constantly #ontheverge of creative fulfillment but never there” but constantly working towards it.

Follow Wafia on Instagram, Facebook, Spotify, Twitter, and Website

Advertisements

Out There Impels You to “Risk It All” with New Single Ft. Blake Rose

Making some risks this summer

As EDM has taken over much of the music industry, it’s nice to see every once in a while artists who are still bending and playing with the sounds that electronica can expand to. That includes Out There’s recent release that dropped today “Risk It All” featuring the vocals of Blake Rose. The track is a great summer 2018 single that helps you escape your head for a moment and makes you question why you haven’t just did what was wanted to be done?

The pop-electronic single is a vibrant escapade that delves further into a tunnel of static, sound, tunes and tones. The end result? A song  that sounds like a melodic heartache based on a love lost due to risks taken because of a lack of self-control.

It’s a head-banging worthy single, but also a sweet serenade. The lyrics are simple, but the voice perfectly aligns with the composition produced by Out There, and it all comes together in this perfect chaotic harmony. Rose impels the question of existential being, desire, unknowing, and then reminds us how no matter these circumstances, we are still willing to risk it all.

The track even demonstrates the production capabilities that Out There has mastered, balancing the vocals perfectly with a hard-hitting soundtrack that gets the blood pumping and the mind racing.

The man behind the music is Sam Perlow, an LA-Native who demonstrates his talent through the many years of experience he has had learning about it. He studied piano at a young age, graduated from Scratch Academy (where he learned how to DJ), and  the continued his education at Berklee College of Music. The man behind the voice is Blake Rose, an Australian-born singer with millions of streams across both YouTube and Spotify. Together, they bring you “Risk It All”.

Out There has plenty of tracks to go as the summer holds many exciting new projects for the young producer. So of course, this means we will all have to stay tuned to see what more he will bring to the table.

Be sure to listen to the track above, add it to your summer playlists (I know it will be on my running playlist!), and follow Out There on socials: Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.

SazE Debuts His New Album, ‘SxS Out Now’: Listen

A new sound to look out for is this hip hop artist Saz, who goes by the stage name SazE.

Brooklyn-born, SazE has been creating and mastering his talent for some time now in order to become the next big rapper and producer. In a recent collaboration with producer DON, they put together an album that some could consider a fire record. With solid compositions, well-formulated melodies, and a lot of rhythm, SazE demonstrates his true skills in the riffing game and DON helps us explore the intricacies of song creation. As a former philosophy student at Brandeis University, it’s not hard to find that much of his lyrical writing style is influenced by his major.

Together, this duo make up the collective named SxS, which became the name of their debut album. I had a chance to ask the SazE a few questions about the creation of this album and where he sees himself going with his music. I had a wonderful time speaking to this thoughtful human being from topics of musical taste to human nature to history to emotions and life decisions. The man has been through so much, and like a true philosopher and story teller, he painted pictures of his experiences in these detailed and engaging ways.

The New Jersey-born artist was raised as one of three boys. His father was a Nigerian immigrant and his mother a black woman, and because of this home was filled with “color and flavor”. It was because of his brother and father though that SazE became interested in music in the first place, introducing him to music like Jay Z. His dad also taught the young rapper how to love and appreciate music from the speaker itself, feeling the vibrations and feeling the pride in the music.

29386622_1885798948098459_2499301603379511296_o.jpg

From that point on, SazE knew music was a path he wanted to pursue, and he actually wrote his first rap when he was 6 years old with the sole lyrics being “Why you messin’ with the old man?” He said that he then really started making music in 7th grade and deemed it to be his “emotional hard drive” as life’s hardships finally began to creep into his domain. His middle brother was autistic, but SazE said if there was anything that he learned from that relationship, it was empathy and compassion. Later on, his parents would divorce and this would thrust him into a darker place where things reminded him that love is nothing but BS and there are “dark sides to your parents”. To him, it was like the lights were suddenly shut off on him. “You learn about your emotions during times like those”.

In 8th grade, the artist would take part in a rap group, where he would focus on the concepts he truly wanted to touch upon: emotional relatability, concepts and ideas. He wanted to become technically proficient in his art, and each day he would perfect his craft more.

SazE would attend Brandeis University to pursue a degree in philosophy and from that he gained a love for indie-rock music. “I became obsessed with angst in college, especially with the melodies”. He admits that some of his influences included Arcade Fire’s album The Suburbs, and artists like Kid Cudi and Kanye West. “They inspired me to go for it… people will latch onto the sincerity of it [the music].” SazE still recalls, in 2011, his autistic brother died–the same day Arcade Fire won a Grammy for the record The Suburbs. It was a pretty symbolic day, one that still resonates in his heart and mind as something mysterious. “College taught me about loss–it widened my introspective scope”.

In 2012, the hip hop producer began making beats in college and would expand his musical abilities even more. “It felt like being god. It was like adding sounds in and suddenly ‘let there be snare'”. He faced ups and down throughout college and heartbreak from his first real love, but even then, he would continue onward in his musical pursuit to experimental enlightenment. Upon graduating, he moved out to Maryland and that’s when his studio album Sundown Therapywas created. “Sundown Therapy was a self-indulgent album. My introversion makes me so analytical even though I maybe able to express myself…just me, myself, and I are awkward”. He then noticed how upset he was where he resided and decided to make yet another big move back to the main city, New York. There he landed a job on Wall Street, but even then he realized something was wrong. The life he was leading and the job he had went against everything that he believed in. Morals were different, people were different, and it was a lifeless, creative-less environment.

29432931_1885800168098337_9176877701615583232_o

With a big heart and a large dream, he quit his job and began teaching so that he would have more time to pursue music. This is when he met Sean (DON), his producer friend from Chicago, whom he would develop SxS with. Off the album, SazE admits his two favorite singles are “Bungalow on the Beach” and “Paycheck”. If there was a way to describe SazE, it would be a mix between Kid Cudi and Kanye West, where Cudi’s darkness and mystery and West’s epic force and intensity intertwine.

I was curious to know who inspired this versatile artist, to which he replied that he loves Amy Winehouse for her honesty, Frank Ocean for his sincerity, and Lorde for being his muse (calling her “an unapologetic” songstress).

I had fun asking some of my rapid-fire interview questions such as: His one word to describe himself would be “creative”; he is #OnTheVerge of “gettin’ outta here”; and the one album he would be left with for the rest of his life if he had to only choose one would be Currents by Tame Impala (he deemed it to be the “perfect album” in terms of its content because it is all about life, existential angst, and it never gets boring).

29472091_1885798934765127_3786792572333064192_o.jpg

The poet is working on his forthcoming album now that he has a studio in his own house, so we should be expecting much more from him in the near future. In fact, look out for his music video that will be released on April 25th!

After our conversation, I am excited to see where this artist will take his creative, and where that will take him.

Be sure to follow these guys on Spotify, and listen to the album above! And check SazE out on Instagramas well!

Verge Campus BU x Off the Cuff Present: Off The Verge (2018)

On the Verge of being Off the Verge.

This past Friday (April 6th, 2018), was the 3rd Edition of what was the Boston Breakthrough, revamped and renamed as Off the Verge. This year, team Verge Campus BU decided to partner with the major fashion club on Boston University’s campus, Off the Cuff, to bring a unique twist to our usual showcase. Once again, 8 artists were chosen and premiered, featured, shared, loved, and highlighted by our team of editorialists, marketers, and creatives.

All hands were on deck, decorating, preparing, laughing, dancing, sound checking, and more! It was a wonderful time, getting together with hard working, ecstatic students to put together an incredible showcase that was intensely and thoroughly created over the course of a month.

At the event, there were streetwear brands like Allston Crawl and Buch America; there was jewelry designed by BU student Ameera Hammouda; there was Sony Music U merchandise; and there was a food sponsor Eat Your Coffee.

The saying holds true, third time is the charm! Of the three production of this showcase, 2018’s, this year’s edition of the show was the best outcome yet with tons of amazing articles, playlists, photos, instastories, graphics, and a wild promo video (filmed and produced by Jared Brill), there was no doubt that the show was going to run just as well. As a matter of fact, it did, with the most attendance we have had, we were able to offer our performers and vendors a chance to share their craft to a full crowd.

However, we can not forget our main attraction, which was that the 8 artists (unfortunately, 7 due to medical reasons) performed throughout the night, serenading the audience and demonstrating their talents on the stage of BU Central under the lights and surround by glow sticks.

It was certainly a night to remember, and one to be proud of because of all the hard work our teammates put in together.

—————————————————————————

As Editor-in-Chief of the Boston University chapter since its genesis, this was my last Boston Breakthrough event. The event I wanted to create in order to allow our team members to work together as an actual team, as a family. At the end of the day, this is my family. I love them all so dearly, both the old and the new, those whom have been with me since day 1 and the ones who just joined this last semester. Everything about Verge Campus has formed what I have been able to do, and what I have been able to see. Without this, I don’t think I would have ever bene able to become a leader, to understand that music industry or meet the people in the music scene who I have met. This is a thank you to not only my teammates for keeping me afloat and inspired and motivated, this is a thank you to all of the artists, both small and large, who have given me the chance to speak to them, to write about them, and to share their music and my words through this platform. Thank you to the artists who participate in Boston Breakthrough and thank you to Off the Cuff for this amazing collaboration.

Remember that what you give is what you get, and what you show passion in and hard work in will reflect back in the career or life path of your dreams. Don’t be afraid to work hard and don’t be afraid of others. But most importantly, don’t be afraid of yourself, because as long as words, music, friends, interests, and experiences exist, you will always be able to create and show off something incredible that was made or done entirely by you.

Here’s to once being on the verge to now being off the verge. 

Love, Neelu Mohaghegh (4.11.18)

(P.S. If you go to our Verge Campus BU Spotify account HERE, you can check out the exclusive playlists of all of our acts from the night of Off the Verge)

Artist Spotlight: G-Eyez Releases Music Video for “Sacrifice”

This is a song to relate to, to feel for, and to understand. It’s a song that is meant to cope along with and help you recognize the things you’ve accomplished, the hardships you’ve been dealt, and then a way to go about resolving the issues.

2018 is a big year for G-Eyez’s music and for his career. With his company doing well and his music finally getting the attention it deserves, he’s given his all to make this work. You can hear in his music the raw intensity, the pure love, the agonizing pain, and the true emotion placed into each riff. Even in the music video, real life unfolds before our eyes, as G-Eyez takes us for a ride through his tale of his single “Sacrifice”. With amazing production, impactful scenes, and ominous lighting, we get a very distinct feeling of nostalgia and hardships all in one while watching the visual.

G-Eyez, stands for an abbreviation of “Golden Eyez”.  After 10 years in the difficult whirlwinds that make the music industry, he has now made a place for himself and a name that he can reflect upon with pride. The artist was born in Cambridge, MA and then lived in Texas some years. He has numerous success stories working with artists such as Termanology, Red Café, Joe Budden, and more! In his debut album, the artist takes poetry and redefines it with the elements of his beat-heavy compositions, profound energies, and hypnotic rhythms.

The Boston-based rapper has thus far released his sophomore record “Retro Series” and an EP titled “Chasin’ History”. Currently, he is working on his next EP to follow up the last one and to complete the creative thought process. As if music as a performing artist was not enough, G-Eyez  launched his own publishing company CMB Publishing (Cambridge Music Business Pub Co LLC), and is a partner in a booking agency called Capitol Front Booking, all in 2017.

The artist has been on a crazy, hectic U.S. tour and has performed at every SXSW since 2013 (amongst many others). The connoisseur of hip hop has even opened for major artists such as Rae Sremmurd, Migos, T-Pain, Fabolous, and a few others. There’s no doubt that the trajectory of this artist’s future is  clear in view with positivity and opportunity, and we’ll be here to continue to see him climb!

_qGezpEg_400x400.jpg

 

Be sure to check him out on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram!

Wallows Releases Nostalgic Single “These Days” Worth Not Missing

 

Wallows will be your new indie-rock boy-band that you fall in love with.

The trio (made up of band members: Cole Preston, Braeden Lemasters, and Dylan Minnette) recently released their sweet, daydream-esque single, “These Days”, which comes off their forthcoming debut EP Spring. Already, the guys have began to circulate a buzz as SirusXM Alt Nation’s Critical Cut chose “Pictures of Girls”, another one of their outstanding tracks from the project. Spring is set up with high hopes of being a wonderful production with the help of the Grammy award-winning producer John Congleton (St. Vincent). It is set to be available on April 6th through Atlantic Records. What to expect with this record is a a light-hearted, bright, pure, and infectious take on music that seems to be lacking in a lot the sounds we hear today.

unnamed-1.jpg

In preparation, Wallows announced a special release week of performances at Los Angeles’ Amoeba Hollywood on April 5th, Brooklyn’s Rough Trade on April 9th, and at London’s Hoxton Bar & Kitchen on April 14th, which will also be their first ever international endeavor. Tickets for this awesome experience are now on-sale HERE.

Now back to “These Days”–it’s a song that shines a light on your shadow, brings a smile to your face, and keeps the a positive perspective in the forefront of minds. It’s a sweet, yet melancholy single that dips up and down between major and minor chords, and gives you the airy feeling of happy-go-lucky love. It’s the single you’d want to be listening to in your room, away from the stresses of the world, and it’s a good reminder that there are better days ahead. It’s a love song as a whole with vocals that are charming, lyrics that are grin-inducing, and a composition that is atmospheric. Together, it’s as if someone concocted a cocktail of  The Beatles and Passion Pit into one–a killer combo.

unnamed.jpg

The Los Angeles-based band recently completed their first headlining tour with sold-out shows across the U.S. and Canada, including Los Angeles’ El Rey Theatre and New York City’s Bowery Ballroom. In addition, the guys had the honorable and exciting chance to perform at this year’s SXSW. However, the festival experience doesn’t end there, as this summer they gear up for Lollapalooza!

There’s a bright future for Wallows, and I’m excited where the music takes them.

For a sneak peek into the guys’ plans for their album release, check out the list below:

SPRING TRACK LISTING
1. Ground
2. It’s Only Right
3. Let The Sun In
4. These Days
5. 1980s Horror Film
6. Pictures of Girls

And don’t forget they’re going on tour in these specific cities, so be sure to come out  when you can:

unnamed.png

Follow the guys on social media to stay up to date: Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.

Petticoat Paints Metallic Remix of Kelela’s Single “A Message” Today

https://soundcloud.com/hipetticoat/kelela-a-message-petticoat-remix

 

Body 3.jpg

David Halsey, musically known as Petticoat, is an artist you’ll want to keep an eye on. With this erotic remix of Kelela’s mystifying single “A Message”, you will feel the euphoria seep into your mind and take you on a fantastic ride. Like a ray of sunshine and a rhythm to a silent day, Petticoat demonstrates the artistry behind working in music, songwriting, and being a musician. He takes an dark ominous song and transforms it into a high energy escapade of sound.

Somehow, Petticoat is able to manipulate the movements and inflections of the vocals harmoniously without a stir and make them all flow like waterfalls into dark spaces. All I can picture as I hear this remix are light beams shining into cracks of places and big life to the things that were once silent.

Cover 1.jpg

“To me, music is a physical character built from melody, texture, and effects. What do you see when you listen to something? Perhaps a scene plays in your head, or maybe you get an audio-visual sensation like seeing colors. Behind the music, I want the listeners to get a sense of playfulness, femininity, and brightness through sound. So much of the music i was making and listening to was enveloping this masculine energy through distortion and large, abrasive synths & noises. Frankly, I was just tired of it. I hope my music provides a splash of color or a breath of fresh air to someone’s music landscape. That’s my goal” articulately explains the fellow artist.

Originally from LA, the artists is surrounded by an insurmountable array of electronic and R&B influences. However, today’s era of electronica have taken a new spin into areas of production with artists like Cashmere Cat, Lido, KAYTRANADA, and Mura Masa, that are just a whole new level of complexity and skill.

Artwork Kelela Remix.png

Much of Petticoat’s talents though started when he was in a duo called SKULS, it incorporated both dark ambient music as well as UK-influenced electro music. Supported by the label in London, Terrorrhythm, SKULS gained attention even from!

Body 2.jpg

What’s exciting about all of this is that with each year comes new possibilities for this artist, and he’s definitely making sure to take hold of them. His once bubble-gum pop and serene sounds are now being replaced or combined with metallic and bolder tones, and rhythms are altering, and sound waves are vibrating more so than ever.

So be sure to check out the song above, and to keep up with the evolution of this producer, Petticoat as more is to come.

Follow him on social media at: Soundcloud, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter.

 

Healy, alayna, and YOG$ Set a “Forest Fire” in Our Hearts & Minds

PSA: Please don’t sleep on these artists. Healy is an interesting, dynamic character, with a voice that is both raw, real, and exposing.

2018 has been a year of trio collaborations and I am here for it. It gives such a beautiful element to songs.It has also been a while since I have actually said I found a new artist that I really like so much, I would be willing to listen to them on repeat so much, but somehow these three have done the trick. Somehow, they have found the formula to what makes the perfect ambient single. The whines, the echoes, the looping rhythm, and the various voices all join in perfect union.

unnamed.jpg

It’s honestly a magical song that needs no more explanation than to just listen to

“Well pastel pink, you should have known, I would like, if we were alone” croons Healy, followed by alayna with “we’re shedding our skin, we’re putting out a forest fire, so that we can breathe in, and start again…”. If that doesn’t send chills down your veins and get a seductive vibe coursing through your blood, then I don’t know what would.

3e1845e44fbfb0c90c624544ee38f85e16963e40.jpeg

For a little background with these songsters, Healy is currently studying physical therapy but in his time, he spends creating these masterpieces and collaborating with other talent. alayna is originally from New Zealand, but currently resides in NYC. The mystic voice we hear in this single and many of her other works is the product of exploring the world and soul-searching, a past-time she has taken as a full career. As for YOG$, is young LA-based producer with a clear talent for music composition and formation.

With this single, grown and developed by the likes of these three, it’s a breath of fresh air. It’s the epitome of meditation wrapped in R&B and vibrations, and you can’t get yourself out of the gorgeous wave of fire they have formulated.

Screen Shot 2018-03-15 at 8.50.24 PM.png

Be sure to check out these three on Instagram, and jam out to the single above. I promise you won’t regret it. Just let it take you.

Healy

alayna

YOG$