Following her impressive debut single ‘Wish We Had History’, emerging New Zealand singer-songwriter BEXY has just released her latest single ‘Stay Away’. Co-written and produced by Ambian & Sleo, along with Zac Emerson and Jesse Brown, ‘Stay Away’ is a laid-back indie pop gem that delves into the universal struggle between head and heart.
We had a quick chat to BEXY about the new single and how she got into music.
Can you tell us a little about yourself and what led you to music?
I’ve always been obsessed with music. My Dad is a muso so there were always instruments around the house, so naturally, I gravitated towards them. I can’t remember when I wasn’t writing songs on my bedroom floor. However, I was always very quiet about it all. I struggled to sing in front of people. I used to only post singing videos on Facebook, any performance I would cry before and after or just wimp out and not do it. If it was at home I’d make everyone turn off the lights and sit in another room if they wanted to hear my singing. But even with all my fear, deep down I knew music was what I wanted to do forever.
Tell us about your music. How did you develop your sound?
I think my sound has and will constantly evolve and change as I change and go through different experiences and develop different skills and ideas. My mum has always taught me to just aim to be the highest and truest version of myself and that will bleed into my music. All I can do is be authentic and create what feels right in the moment, try my best and surrender to the rest.
How do you begin your songwriting process? Do you have any routines or rituals?
It’s different all the time. Most recently, my best ideas have come from driving in the car and having a wee singing therapy session by myself to the sound of the car engine. Trying to work through my emotions and recording it on my iPhone, then when I’m home I’ll listen back to the recordings and if anything sticks out to me, I’ll find a piano or guitar and just delve into the idea and refine it.
I’ve been doing a few co-wrote sessions in studios, where I write from scratch with other musos - All very new and daunting to me but I basically bring out my diary and share way too much and we birth something from that.
Congrats on the release of your new single ‘Stay Away’. Can you tell us a little about the story behind it?
Well, it all started with a random night in the studio with some new friends, drinking gin and tonic and sharing a little too much information. This song is about when you know someone is bad for you in a way, but your heart utterly adores them so you struggle to ever stay away from them. This song is about the constant battle you have with your head and your heart. At the moment music is my number one and I don't want to get distracted but it's hard when special humans wander into your life. But also I need to live my life to have things to write about so ya know ha ha. I’m heading into a very contradictory and confusing season.
Who or what would you say are your biggest musical influences?
At the moment I love Jorja Smith, Raveena, Mahalia, Clairo, UMI - very much into female artists who carry themselves with grace and empower other women. Love Still Woozy, Tame Impala and King Princess. There are so many artists I look up to. Sometimes it's not even just their music but the way they use their influence and community they've created to spread positive messages and change the world in their own way. It's brilliant and beautiful and it's one of the reasons why having the talent and passion for pursuing music as a career is such a privilege.
What’s the best advice you’ve been given and who was it from?
Wow, you know what that's a hard one because I am a sucker for a good inspirational quote. I lap up advice, especially if it's from my mum, Oprah, Sarah Blondin or Eckhart Tolle. But something that has always stuck with me from a young age is a scene from an old TV show my family is obsessed with called ‘Frasier’. A character called Martin says: “Life's a crap shoot. We could all go at any time. That's why we have to make the most of whatever time we've got. Like sand through the hourglass, so are the Days of Our Lives”. I'd watched every episode of every season of Frasier a million times but for some reason this time it really resonated with me... I no longer wanted to live in fear. It gave me perspective, that inspired me to live an interesting, fulfilling life.
What advice would you give to emerging songwriters and musicians like yourself that are wanting to pursue a career in music?
You have to want this more than anything and be the hardest working person in the room, push aside fear and just go for it. Use the resources that you have to make the best possible art you can and then surrender to that and enjoy yourself. Enjoy every part of it. Plus just be a good person. This is what I tell myself every day anyway.
What is your favourite thing about making music?
It’s my therapy and oh boy, I love it so much!
What can punters expect from a BEXY live show?
A ton of beautiful energy - cuddles and kisses. A lot of me either accidentally flashing you or my guitar pic flying out of my hand mid-song.
What are your plans for the rest of 2019?
I want to just keep writing more and more music. I'm doing a few intimate performances and I have more music coming out. Woop woop! A couple more singles and an EP.
To celebrate the release of her new single, BEXY is hosting a gig on October 11th in Christchurch where she will perform old, new and unreleased music. More details here.