I was born to a Trinidadian mother and Hungarian father in central Canada, in a city called Saskatoon. My mum worked as a music teacher and my father still works as a masseuse. I am the only daughter of five children, not including the step children. Music was always a very important part of my mother’s life and so it became important to me too. At three years-old, I started taking piano lessons. I was taught the Suzuki method, where I learned to play by ear. I didn’t learn how to read music until years later. My love for performing grew from my love of music and for attention. My mother once said that, at the age of 5, during a time her choir was performing, I ran up onstage in front of all the members and started to sing. That love for performing has never gone away.
Growing up I emulated so many people in the entertainment industry. Whitney Houston was a huge inspiration and I even got to meet her backstage at a concert. Her and Bobby Brown – I have a picture somewhere. All the divas I admired from Mariah Carey to Christina Aguilera to Janet Jackson and so many more. I loved my pop icons such as Britney Spears and Jennifer Lopez as well as my boy bands like NSync. New Kids on the Block was actually my first concert. We sat way up in the nose bleeds, and my mum brought her earplugs and school papers she needed to grade. The beauty of growing up in Saskatoon, was that I was surrounded by so many different types of people who liked all sorts of music styles and so I was introduced to almost everything. My role models though were the women in the music industry because that’s what I wanted to be.
Not everyone needs to study to become a great creator. I think it depends on what type of creating you are interested in doing. I believe the best creators are people who think outside the box, stay authentic to themselves and take risks. I studied theater arts at Grant MacEwan University in Edmonton, Alberta (Canada). I think the rigorous study hours gave me the discipline I needed to be in the entertainment industry but more so the courage to improvise and create without judgment, only support. In regards to songwriting, my way of learning was by being terrible at it and allowing myself to be terrible at it and learn from it. I think if anyone is consistent with something they will, hopefully, automatically get better, and that’s what happened to me. I did take an online songwriting course at Berkeley School of Music, and though it gave me some great tools to work with, I don’t think it really helped me to become a better creator. It was too cookiecutter. To me a great songwriter is someone who is allowed to be free in whatever way they want to express themselves.
To be honest, when I was younger, it was all about being famous. I wanted to be a star. The problem is, when you focus on being a star instead of being the best at your craft, you do yourself a disservice. Once I matured and my passion for making music evolved and expanded, my focus then became, how do I make amazing music that will reach the world and inspire people like I was always inspired. I started in the music industry quite late, and so I still have a long way to go and so much to achieve but I am getting their one song at a time. I can see a BRIT award on the horizon.
As a female in the music industry, I found the biggest challenge I have had to face was defending myself to men of power and their sexual advances. It is so hard to get a break, and so many do and have succumbed to this sadly, but it has to stop. A woman should be able to be sexy without having to feel sexually vulnerable.
The United Kingdom is booming with creativity, and what I love especially about the music industry here now, and in general actually, is that we are going back to conscious music, where entertainers are not afraid to speak their truth. I feel like the UK still has a long way to go to be more open to different genres and styles of music, but we are slowly getting there. Our openness to creativity among different cultures is especially evolving, whether it be in fashion, film, or any other form of art.
Usually the work offered to me would go through a manager, but at the moment I am self managed. This will be the case for a few more months as we have someone new coming on board. In the meantime, my husband, who is also my producer and business partner, runs through the deals with me and we make a joint decision. If the offer is legitimate (google is always required) is going to move my career forward then I see no reason to turn it down.
Finding balance between my work life and personal life is key to good mental health. Being an independent artist and having to do everything myself, the work does bleed into my personal life. There just aren’t enough hours in the day. I am trying to get better at leaving my phone and being present. It’s very important to be present in the moment. I am tired a lot so that can also affect my personal life but I do my best to workout and take care of myself. I try to spend time with family and friends, even if it is only once a month. I am a mother as well, of 2 young boys and so making sure I make time for them is crucial. They do get annoyed when I’m not able to play, but I make sure that they are always my priority.
Making music to me is all about a feeling and a vibe. I choose the music based on how it makes me feel. If the music moves me, a song concept arises naturally. I have all these ideas I want to write about, based on my beliefs and life experiences. The music feeds the melody and the melody feeds the lyrics. That’s how I write. It is the best time right now to be an independent artist, because we are living in a digital age. We can put out music and in a click of a button, it’s available worldwide. However, the music industry has become a popularity contest. Who has the most followers on social media? Who has the most engagement? You may have the best music in the world, but if don’t have a strong social media following, it’s a lot harder for your amazing music to be heard. I see the future of the music industry becoming even more saturated with wannabe artists and musicians because of how easy it is to release music. It’s my job to stand out.
I have a new single being released on March 27th, 2020. The new song is called Lioness. I have not announced it yet so this is your exclusive ha-ha. You are the first to know. I am extremely proud of this record. I also have a show at The Spice of Life in Soho London on March 27th. I’m headlining with my band, and I can’t wait. It’s going to be soooooo much fun. I recently released a song and music video called One Life. It was featured on BBC Radio, and has been getting amazing press. You can stream it on my Spotify page or watch the video on my YouTube channel.