Introducing Tee Noah and his soulful new single, Helping Myself
Consider the Brisbane-based musician one to watch in 2018.
Australia's hip-hop scene appears to be undergoing a bit of a reinvention at the moment, with artists including Manu Crook$ and Miss Blanks pushing forward a far more Americanised take on our unique hip-hop sound. Brisbane's Tee Noah is another name to add to this list, with the Ethiopian-born musician teasing this traditional hip-hop groove with his new single Helping Myself. It's an honest and personal walkthrough of his upbringing, combining his own vocals (which alternate between quick-firing rap and a more soulful R&B sound at times) with an airy, bassy production which feels really restrained and held back against Tee Noah's vocals. Still a newcomer to the Australian hip-hop market, we got to know the emerging musician a little better. Check it out alongside the Helping Myself single below:
Tell us about yourself?
I’m happiest when I’m giving. I went on a very long journey to find what we’ve all been looking for and I have returned to help others find theirs. Before GPS navigation, naval captains used to rely on the stars to guide their ships through the darkest hours. I strive to be that for the lost ships out on the rough and unrelenting tides of time. I will burn as bright as I can, be vulnerable and expose myself to ridicule so that I may be seen by those that are looking for it. In this perplexing world we live in, I want to offer my own answers to the questions which arise in us all. My greatest ambition would be to be of some value to all sailors...whether it’s to provoke laughter, intrigue, dancing, crying, thought or to inspire hope….but I will settle for being valuable to you.
What kinda tunes we talkin’?
I want to remain free as an artist which I hope makes life more interesting for you. Due to the whole world of exposure, we are influenced by so many different sounds, places, cultures, trends etc., hence, I wish to continue to experiment and evolve rather than be captive to a genre. If I had to state a category, my music is soul/hip-hop/RnB. I really want to explore and to discover new ways to say the same thing, love yourself.
It happens a variety of ways. An idea strikes me from above and I try to hold on to it long enough to put on paper. Sometimes it’s a wrestle to capture the words and other times they fall into place without my help. When it comes to production time it’s all about feels. Me and my producer sit there and do as instructed by the breaths in the beat. I feel that making music is a little like learning magic and as I continue this alchemy, I will become a better musician. A better magician.
Can you tell us about your new single, Helping Myself?
This song is an introspection on my past experiences in relationships. It explores the idea that we repeat our mistakes despite our own better judgement. Almost like we make decisions that we know will hurt ourselves willingly. Do we like pain? Helping Myself is about Tee Noah trying to check himself before he wrecks himself.
Any shows coming up?
22 December Flying Cock, Brisbane at 8:45 pm
What’s the rest of the year have in store?
Perform final shows for the year and hopefully fly back to Adis Ababa to visit my family. Let them know not to panic, everything is turning out how we planned it.
Where can we hear more of your music?