INTERVIEW: Thandi Phoenix

Hi Thandi, welcome to VENTS! How have you been?

Hey! I’ve been really good thank you 🙂 I was over in Texas playing SXSW, recently put out my new single ‘My Way’ and just had a week in the Gold Coast rehearsing for the Commonwealth Games Closing Ceremony.

Can you talk to us more about your latest single “My Way”?

Yea ‘My Way’ is a song that I’m so happy to put out into the world as it’s a message that I think is important for everyone to hold. It’s about believing in and backing yourself to achieve anything you desire and not being afraid of people’s opinions of you. I wrote it to remind myself and the listeners of their strength and the importance of following your dreams and staying true to yourself.

Did any event in particular inspired you to write this song?

I mean there’s too many to count really. I’ve had experiences where people have tried to tell me to do one thing or the other and try to mould my into something they wanted. This intentionally and unintentionally happens to everyone from birth, where we’re put in situations or told to act/ look or be a certain way because that’s what’s expected of us from society but it’s not always what’s right for you or what you want. So this was just a way for me to release and to say no. I’m not going to follow the crowd, I’m not going to try and please everyone because it’s my life, I’m going to do what I want how I want to and for the right reasons.

Any plans to release a video for the single?

Yeah I actually shot a video for it at the end of last year and released it when I dropped the song 🙂 have a looksy I had a lot of fun making it in LA.

How was the recording and writing process?

The actual writing and recording of the vocals all happened in a day. It was something that came together very quickly and felt great from the get go. I had a session with Bertie Blackman and Stuart Criton and as we were vibing on chords and melodies I looked through my notes and found a concept I had written down with some lyrics and it all started to fit. I think when something comes from the heart and there a strong message it flows easily. Then when Rudimental got on board to do production, them being in London and me being in Sydney we just did a back and forth over email until we got the track to where it is today.

What was it like to work with Rudimental and how that relationship develop?

It was super cool to work with the fellas because I was initially just a fan of their work and had been to their shows as a punter. So fast forward a few years and I was asked to sing vocals for their support act, so that’s when I got to know the fellas touring round Oz. At the end of that tour they asked me to be their support with my own band for the following year, and that was a dream. Over those tours we got to know each other they heard my music and when I needed production work on a song, they said they were down do it so obviously that was the icing on the cake haha.

How much did he influence the song?

It was from listening to Rudimental that I got my taste for drum and bass. They’ve managed to bring in to a commercial realm with elements of pop and electronic but at the core of all their songs is just great songwriting with a good feel. I think that’s something that “My Way” has to it.

Do you tend to take a different approach when you are collaborating with someone else rather than in your own?

I wouldn’t say I take a different approach but it’s definitely a different experience when collaborating, naturally because there are more ideas being thrown around but the process is much the same in that I’m never too precious on an idea, it’s instinctual, you just let them flow and ultimately do what strongest for the song and what feels and sounds the best.

Does the new single mean we can expect a new material – how’s that coming along?

Yeah I do have lots of new and unreleased music waiting in the wings that I can’t wait to share!

Any tentative release date or title in mind?

I’ll have to keep that a secret for now, I’ve only just released “My Way” so I’ll let you sit on that for a little longer then surprise you.

Any plans to hit the road?

I definitely want to get on the road and tour with my new material so as the year progresses and more comes out that’s something I’ll be organising!

What else is happening next in Thandi Phoenix’s world?

You should head to my website; or my socials; thandiphoenix to stay in the loop. I’m involved in a music Q&A panel called “Tracks” this weekend, and have some exciting shows that will be announced very soon and well of course on working behind the scenes to get new music to you.

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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