It’s been almost a year since singer-songwriter Talitha released her debut single “Okay”, a slick alternative R&B jam reminiscent of the likes of Tinashe and Cassie produced by German producer Young Taylor. The Milton Keynes-based artist surpassed 3,000+ subscribers on her YouTube channel by covering popular mainstream songs in her own unique way and creating engaging content before taking a break from music to focus on her mental wellbeing.
She’s finally back with new music and a more positive outlook in life and her music career. I had the chance to pick her brain and also exclusively premiere her brand new single “Over Here” on DiscoverNü before its official worldwide release on all major platforms on 29th January.
Read the interview below.
So, Talitha welcome back. I’ve been patiently waiting for your new music. Apart from working on new music, what else have been up to in the past year?
Apart from music, I’ve been adjusting to life — being single again after so long. It’s been fun and I’ve been learning more about myself and focusing on being a better me. It’s a new journey which I’m excited for and so far it’s been great, but I’ve had to do a lot of self-reflection.
I’m glad you gave yourself time to do all of that. You mentioned being single again after so long, did you experience heartbreak?
Heartbreak, yes. When you share your life with someone for years it’s almost like death when it’s over — so yeah, there was heartbreak. I think the most important revelation for me was how much I put my value in other people, especially those I care about. So I’ve had to rebuild my self-confidence and learn that it’s okay to be alone, love will find me again. But I gotta work on myself first and be content with me. In “Over Here” I talk about how “I used to fall apart when they let go, but me, myself and I the best combo”, and it’s true. Me, myself and I are the only things I need.
I understand, so that break from music has been a blessing in disguise then. You do say that in your latest single. Let’s talk about “Over Here” — when did you write that?
Yes, 100%. I wrote “Over Here” around September last year. It was actually supposed to be a cover remix but when I heard the beat I thought it was too good to use for a cover. The initial idea was actually supposed to be a happy love song, but I’m not too good at writing those yet.
Oh okay, I do remember you tweeting you were writing music around that time. It’s turned out to be a great song that many listeners will be able to relate to. So, we won’t ever hear a happy love song from you then?
Thank you! I’m all about taking risks and trying new things so you will hear one from me. I’ve already recorded one and ready to release this spring/summer time. If I’m being honest it’s my best song to date.
You’re welcome, and good! Whoa, looking forward to hearing it. Let’s go back to “Over Here” — how did you and the producer of the song Ocean connect?
YouTube. Literally, I was just browsing on YouTube looking for some beats to write to, I stumbled across his channel and hit him up via email, like “yo I want this” and the rest is history.
It’s amazing how easy it is to connect with fellow creatives in this digital age. What was his opinion of the song?
I know, the internet is literally my oyster. The opportunities to create and network are endless. And when I sent him the finished track, I was so happy when he said he loved it. That made me happy too.
Indeed. That’s great! “Over Here” kind of reminds me of a mid 2000’s R&B jam, was there a particular artist or sound that inspired you to go for this vibe?
Thank goodness it’s considered as R&B! I was really afraid to even record or release it because I felt like it was more of a pop jam (in my opinion at least). I think in terms of inspiration, I wanted to make a happy song — something about being young, wild and free. But it didn’t sound authentic. It sounded forced, so I was listening to a lot of music like XXXTentacion, Cruel Youth and Andre 3000, there’s something about their lyrics. They can have a dope beat but the lyrics would actually be sad or deep. So I wanted something which had lyrical substance not too deep or sad, so I tried to make the chorus seem somewhat happy.
That’s a straight up R&B song *laughs*. You’ve just mentioned a lot of great artists. Although I am surprised you mentioned X — how did you get into his music?
First time I heard of him was when my little brother Jaden came home from school one day singing his song “Look At Me”, and my mind was like “these kids”. I then heard the song again and was like wow! After that I found his deeper stuff and I don’t know, I felt some sort of comfort from his lyrics. It’s corny but I felt like some days he helped me get through stuff. I really wish I could have collaborated with him. Artistically, I think as well he made me feel comfortable making music I wouldn’t be as confident making, but I wish I could.
That’s real! Despite all the controversies, his music connected with millions of people including myself. So it’s not corny at all. The single drops on Tuesday, are you nervous at all? What are your expectations for it?
Exactly! That’s the type of artist I hope to be, one that can comfort people and bring them joy. Nervous is an understatement. In all honesty, I just want it to do well. I’m trying to not put any expectations because I know if I don’t reach those goals I will be very hard on myself and it will rob me off the joy of releasing it. So I just hope people enjoy it. I just hope it gets as much shine as God allows.
I’m sure you’ll reach that level too. I understand. Last year you only released one single, do you have follow up singles ready or are you working on a project?
This year I said to myself I need to be consistent no excuses. I’ve recorded all my upcoming singles, they are literally sitting in my hard drive waiting for a release date. I need to be the artist I know I can be and push myself this year. Project, maybe sometime later this year.
Amazing, I’m excited to hear all your new music. Apart from music, what else are you passionate about?
I’m excited to share it! Thank you. And I love to travel — I really want to do a lot of that this year. Fashion photography I adore. I love taking photographs whenever I get the chance to.
Nice, I should’ve guessed, the pictures on your socials have always been on point. One last subject I wanted to touch on is depression. Like I said earlier, I was keeping an eye out on your Twitter last year, and I did read some tweets that worried me. I mean, it could’ve been breaking up with your ex and other things. But, how hard is it for an artist to deal with depression?
I think at this point I was feeling lost. And this goes back to having to learn about myself again and be okay with being alone. I just felt like everything was falling apart and I didn’t know if I could handle things alone. I think depression for artists is hard because it can be that it dictates if you want to continue or give up. It’s already hard being an independent unknown artist and you’re trying to make it. It’s even harder when you’re going through a tough time like that. For me, I can be my own worst enemy. And this is why I didn’t get to release much music last year because I doubt myself too much. I’m learning to be kinder to myself and that it’s okay if things don’t go my way or a song doesn’t do well. It doesn’t take away from my talent, it’s just a learning curve.
Ah okay, now it makes more sense. I understand how hard it is to go through that as an up and coming artist. Well done for making a strong comeback from that though. Finally, thank you for letting us premiere “Over Here” — can you please introduce the single to people reading this?
Thank you for giving me a platform and chance to share my music! “We don’t do feelings over here” is the mood for 2019! Ladies and Gentlemen, anytime you feel yourself catching feelings remember this song. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did writing it! This is “Over Here”.
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