Meet Stellie, who makes a jazz-infused splash with Love Me First
Fresh from supporting Winston Surfshirt in Adelaide, Stellie is paving the way for an exciting remainder of the year ahead.
Australia has always been leading the charge when it comes to unique twists on modern-day pop music, whether it be through artists like Troye Sivan - who are able to move between maximalist chart-pop and tender indie ballads at the drop of a hat - or artists like Mallrat, Kota Banks and Stella Donnelly, each becoming runaway successes in Australia - and beyond, to a degree - through their masterful approaches to the genre. Enter right of frame Stellie, a rising Adelaide-based musician starting to make waves around the country, blossoming into an artist-to-watch after years of building her craft in the local Adelaide scene supporting names like most recently, Winston Surfshirt.
If any song will cause her to break-out nationally, it's bound to be Love Me First, a tender moment for the musician that marks her first official single and the perfect time to introduce yourself to the artist-on-the-rise. Marked with the emotional intensity and vulnerability you'd expect from someone like Lorde, Love Me First takes a cliche saying ('love is blind') and flips it on its head, turning it into a subtle pop song layered with elements of indie, electronica and jazz - the latter of which holding a particularly close place in Stellie's heart, as you'll find out shortly. It comes ahead of showcases at BIGSOUND in September and a new signing to booking agency New World Artists, who took on Stellie after being attracted to her promise as one of Australia's most exciting pop names.
Beat the rush and introduce yourself to Stellie and her magical debut single Love Me First below:
Tell us about yourself?
I’m 20 years old and from Adelaide. I’ve been singing pretty much ever since I could talk (or at least that's what my mum tells me), music has always been my thing. [Music is] the thing that I was known for when I was little. I was just a tiny girl with braids in her hair, who had a voice that almost sounded too loud to be coming out of her body. Not much has really changed since then.
What’s the vibe music-wise?
I always find it incredibly hard to answer this question. The short answer would probably be indie pop with a bit of a jazz flare. Jazz music was a massive game changer for me. Artists like Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughan and Amy Winehouse really opened my eyes to a whole new world of music - one that I am very happy to have stumbled upon. But as cliche as it sounds, I don’t think music deserves to be categorised. It should be free and up for anyone to interpret. I’d like to think that as I grow and evolve as a person, my sound will grow and evolve along with me too.
In regards to themes, I like to keep my writing personal, to tell stories through my music. I want it to feel almost too personal - like someone has invaded my inner thoughts, or read through my journal. Therefore my writing will generally reflect events that have happened in my life - although I do tend to exaggerate to make it more interesting.
What are your production and writing processes like?
My writing process does often change. At the moment I have become more and more hyper aware and sensitive around the environment in which I create. Currently, I have my piano set up in my bedroom, its a bit of a tight fit - but it just feels right. My bedroom is my space. Its where I feel most comfortable in my own skin (which of course is overly important when writing music) and I can relax and really let myself go. Generally, I like to be alone during this process - eliminate all distractions, light some candles (at the moment it’s caramel and vanilla scented) and just let my mind wander.
Can you tell us about your new single, Love Me First?
I’d like to think Love Me First is a classic example of that old school saying ‘Love Is Blind’. It's one of those things that I didn’t think was possible until it happened to me. I wrote this song after a particular night - but I think the night in question was just the tipping point. It was something I knew was coming for a long time - but I just wanted to live in my head for a little longer. Love Me First is a realisation that the idea of ‘love’ I created in my head, was really just hurting me instead.
Any tour dates coming up?
I haven’t got any tour dates as of yet, but I am playing a couple of festivals in the next coming months! I’m playing at Scouted Festival in my hometown of Adelaide on the 26th of July, as well as my first ever interstate gig at BIGSOUND in Brisbane in September - both of which I’m super excited about. I’m also lucky enough to be supporting Didirri on the Adelaide leg of his upcoming tour in September.
What does 2019 have in store for you?
2019 has been an absolute whirlwind of a year so far, so the truth is - I’m not too sure what else it has in store for me! Of course, I’m thrilled to be heading to BIGSOUND and playing Scouted, but I’m really keen to hit the studio again and start writing/recording some new material.
Where can we find more of your music?
My music is available on all streaming services, as well as triple j Unearthed.
Follow Stellie: FACEBOOK