Interview: Gazele

Gazele is an African-Australian singer-songwriter who has warmed up her vocals backing Jessica Mauboy and Diana Rouvas before stepping out into the spotlight herself. We were fortunate to find out some more about her in this interview.

Hi Gazele and welcome to Beauty and Lace

Hi Beauty and Lace, it’s a pleasure to talk to you.

What inspired you to pursue a music career?

I’ve been around music my whole life, music was such an important part of my family upbringing. I used to dream about a singing career and the older I got the more I realised that I could actually sing for a living. Some of my family have music careers so it gave me the courage to go after it.

How would you describe your sound?

I would describe my sound as a balance of soul music- raw, honest, storytelling and pop – catchy melodies.

You have been a backing vocalist for Jessica Mauboy and Diana Rouvas, can you tell us a little about the experience?

I truly love being a backing vocalist, it’s so different than being the person upfront. It’s not about you, it’s about creating a beautiful blended sound that supports the leading artist and it’s been an amazing opportunity to back Jess and Diana. In my eyes they are some of the best vocalists in the world so to be asked to work with them has been such an honour. Diana is actually my singing teacher. These ladies are so passionate about their music and it rubs off on me, and they are both genuinely lovely people so that’s a massive bonus.

How did you come to the decision to step out into the spotlight?

I think the spotlight chose me. I’ve always been the loud girl, very opinionated and bold. I love to perform. Being in family and church bands since I was a small child I’ve always felt comfortable on stage. I still get nervous but I really love it. I was in the spotlight before I became a backing vocalist, I’ve got my own band and I’ve done session work for a few other projects so it just feels natural. What’s been most exciting for me is this year I have been working on my original music and I would say that after working with so many brilliant artists and supporting them I have had this urge to get my own music out and develop my own show.


Can you share with us your experience from X Factor?

It was an intense experience that I don’t think anyone can be prepared for until you’ve actually experienced it. There was pressure I put on myself because you’re around so many other great singers who are just as hungry to succeed as you but there’s also a lot of cameras in your face, people judging your performance all the time and you’re tired through a lot if it. So it was more of an emotional challenge for me I’d say. I loved meeting all the contestants and finding out their stories about what got them to that point, everybody’s story is so different. I also loved the opportunity to sing in front of 4000 people and get a positive response especially from Mel B because I was obsessed with her, I always played her (scary spice) in school whenever we decided to perform and try to be the spice girls, haha.

What inspires your songwriting?

Life experience inspires me to write. Whether it’s an experience that I’ve personally gone through or a story I’ve read or someone has told me, I’m a very empathetic person so if someone’s going through something I like to write about it, I love to write about subjects that matter and that people can relate to. I find myself writing more on the side of heartbreak and searching for something more but I’m a really happy person, for some reason its just easier for me to express hardship.

Your first single is ‘The One’, what can you tell us about it?

Yes, I released this song to iTunes earlier this year in March under my previous stage name “Tabitha Ojeah”. It’s a feel good pop dance tune. I love dance music and I wrote this song with a Sydney based producer called Mxxwell. He is ridiculously talented. You’ll see a bit of a mix of styles in my shows, I equally love my slow jams but then when it’s time to party I really get into it so the song represents one side of me. It’s a cool exercise track.

July 17th sees you performing an artist launch show at Gingers, what can audiences expect?

I’m really excited to be launching my original music. The audience can expect groove, energy, singable tunes, rawness, emotion and they can expect to dance.

What is next for Gazele?

I’m currently in the studio working on some new song releases so expect to see more from me real soon.

What does being a woman mean to you?

Being a woman to me means acknowledging the power I have within, freedom to be beautiful in my own skin, freedom to have a voice and speak about what matters to me and the pride to say I’m unashamed to be a woman, the world needs me, I possess qualities that are unique and vital.


You can follow Gazele on Facebook and Soundcloud.

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