Interview with: Turya

Nicki Wells – aka TURYA – made her first entry on NEW LEASE MUSIC with debut single, Rain, which was named Song of the Month by the blog in June. The accompanied video was named Music Video of the Week for two consecutive weeks (check out the chart show on Instagram). With growing interest surrounding the South Londoner, it’s only fair to invite her to the interview hot seat.

NLM: Hey how you doing? Thank you for taking part in an interview with NEW LEASE MUSIC.

T: Thanks for having me.

NLM: First of all, can you tell us the meaning of your stage name Turya?

T: It’s interesting because I was searching for names for ages. I had a list of about 150 names and words and I wanted to have a name that meant something profound to me. I found Turya spontaneously. It is originally a Sanskrit word: ‘Tooriya’. There are several meanings of it, the most commonly known being the Fourth state of consciousness after dreaming, dreamless and waking. But what resonated with me, is that it also means the Silence one experiences after Sound.

I loved the idea of that and wanted the word to manifest my artistic persona in the sense that, after hearing a Turya song, one could be left in a moment of silence…

NLM: Your latest single Rain was the most popular track on NEW LEASE MUSIC in June. What’s the public’s perception of the single beyond the blog?

T: Wow that’s cool, I didn’t know that. Thank you. Well, we’ve had a great response considering it’s the first single I’ve ever released as a solo artist, (as Turya), even though I have done many things as Nicki Wells. So it’s daunting but exciting at the same time. ‘Rain’ has also already been used in a Ridley Scott produced film ‘India in a Day’ which is cool.

NLM: How would you describe your sound?

T: It’s definitely a singer/songwriter approach with folk, soul, cinematic and Indian classical influences.

NLM: Where do you get your inspiration from to create such unique sounds?

T: It’s all a culmination of what I listen to and absorb subconsciously.

NLM: If you were to collaborate with ONE mainstream artist, who would it be and why?

T : Um mainstream, ok… Maybe Ed Sheeran, why not? He writes catchy songs and seems like a down-to-earth kinda guy.

NLM: If you had three wishes to change the music industry today, what would they be?

T : That’s a hard question because it DOES in fact change so quickly. I would probably say I wish it wasn’t so utterly full and saturated. In a way it’s a good thing because there is so much music available for our consumption but now it’s almost become too much because every Tom, Dick or Harry can write, record and upload an album in his bedroom so it can be overwhelming because everyone and their dog wants to do it and be a Taylor Swift or an Ed Sheeran. Lol!

Number 2, to have more support and exposure for upcoming unsigned songwriters and artists and number 3, to have more government funding for young musicians and youth projects to create music.

NLM: So what plans do you have for 2017? Any upcoming gigs or album in the pipeline?

T: I’ve got (drumrolls please) my first gig as Turya on the 25th July at the Union Chapel with Common and Kind, which a fantastic cause about how music creates a sense of unity and integration in these trying times: (Grenfell tower, London Bridge and Manchester incidents). So it’s essentially about artists and musicians coming together to spread good energy and a sense of hope. So I’m happy to be a featured artist in that. And I will eventually do some of my own gigs around London.

NLM: How can potential fans get in touch with you?

T: Facebook: Twitter, Instagram, Spotify

NLM: Finally, if music didn’t exist, what would you do?

T: I would try to make it exist by banging two rocks together to form a sound and then do a repetitive rhythm and then gather my fellow villagers and say: “Guys! Check this out! Now you do it with two rocks and let’s try to do it together!”

New Music Video: The ArtForm – Confucius MC & Mr Brown

‘ The Artform’ is a collaboration between two unique and very talented hip-hop artists: CONFUCIUS MC and MR BROWN.

The production showcases a classic sense of groove and masterful use of samples, producing a solid mixture of unique beats. Confucius’ intelligent lyrics and superb flow combine perfectly with the beats to make a riveting and dynamic collection of songs. The accompanied video was shot during a brief visit to Morocco, displaying a journey through the vibrant and art filled streets of the city of Essaouira, once the home of the late Jimi Hendrix.

Possessing a unique voice which cuts through the clichéd conversations, CONFUCIUS MC has been active in the London hip-hop scene for several years, garnering praise as one half of live act ‘Con+Kwake’ and supporting the likes of Mos Def, Public Enemy and Slum Village .His debut release ‘The Highest Order’ (YNR Productions) has firmly established him as one of London’s emerging new talents.

We Stay True’s recruit MR BROWN has been quietly producing tracks for nearly two decades. After a handful of releases including 2 volumes of his ‘Beats for Days’ instrumental series and a spattering of collaborations (Planet Asia, Copywrite, Beneficence, MCM) he crossed paths with CONFUCIUS MC through a mutual friend and instantly knew they could make something special. Henceforth… and ‘The Artform was born.

Check out the video.

New Track: Swagnolia – DayDreamers

NEW LEASE MUSIC regulars Skye The King and Trilla T are back as DAYDREAMERS, along with third member Cullen M.

The latest swaggerly-slick piece ‘Swagnolia’ features Skye The King and Trilla T, killing it with their flawlessly smooth flow…better check it out!

Song of the Day: Dem Gyal Deh – J.Kas (ft. Franz-Von)

J.KAS dropped a fiery Mantra-produced track entitled ‘Dem Gyal Deh’ bang in the middle of the hot season.

For this two-and-a-half minute deep house number, the Sheffield emcee enlists local spitter Franz-Von to add that extra kick.

Turn this one up to the max…check it out!

New Track: Feeling You – Island Apollo

Acclaimed indie rock collective ISLAND APOLLO released their new infectious track ‘Feeling You’.

Produced by Eric Lilavois (Saint Motel, Atlas Genius), the single features driving drums, layered vocals, upbeat guitar and synth bass riffs. ‘Feeling You’ is an anthem of true loyalty and devotion, Kilpatrick “it’s a song about standing by someone even when they’re at their lowest point: because that’s really when they need you the most”.

Since their inception in 2014, ISLAND APOLLO has established themselves as one of Southern California’s hottest bands who has seen success with being featured on various Spotify curated playlists and VH1, CBS, PBS, USA Network, Fox Sports, and numerous national ads including Sprint and Sobe.

Combining a classic surf vibe with funky urban grooves, ISLAND APOLLO captures the spirit of a West Coast daydream come to life. With members from Los Angeles, Orange County, and San Diego, ISLAND APOLLO is authentically Southern Californian and isn’t afraid to show it. The band has been named Orange County’s “Best Pop Artist” from the OC Music Awards.

Song of the Day: Naked In My Studio – Nino Wes

After appearing on NEW LEASE MUSIC’s Q&A hotspot last month, NINO WES’ seductively smooth R&B number ‘Naked In My Studio’ has made it to today’s Song of the Day hotspot.

‘Naked In My Studio’ is taking from his first album, ‘NewWesCity’…definitely not to be missed; better have a listen.

New Track: New National Anthem – McSxorpio

Hailing all the way from Georgia, Atlanta City, upcoming rapper MCSXORPIO  makes his debut entry on NEW LEASE MUSIC with brand new track ‘New National Anthem’, released last Monday.

Featuring a heavy soulful sound of the 60s, the three-minute track represents a sense of much-needed unity across the globe to eradicate the growing hate that exists today.

‘New National Anthem’ is taking from his new album, ‘Please Change The Channel’, released last Thursday.

Get the first taste of the album and listen to the super smooth ‘New National Anthem.’

Mixtape Review: Foreva Fameos – Fameos

Continuing his combination of light atmospheric overtones and that heavy bassline from his previous mixtape, ‘Hall Of Fame’ – named Mixtape of the Week by NEW LEASE MUSIC late last year –  FAMEOS bounces back, dropping another collection, this time entitled ‘Foreva Fameos’.

His above combination takes on a deeper and gutsy vibe, with the upriser’s newfound “hey, hey” trademark, featured at the beginning of each track – providing the way for the mammoth build up.

There’s some real slick numbers in this neat package, so it’s definitely worth a trial.

Must Listens: Wait For It, Lottery, Rodeo Show, Apply Pressure.

Song of the Day: Hidden – Bianca Rose

British/Jamaican/Nigerian singer-songwriter BIANCA ROSE has been writing and composing for the best part of a decade. In 2007 she self released her debut EP ‘Truth and Tiny Tragedies’, and has continued to collaborate and write songs for other artists ever since. Accompanying herself on guitar and ukulele, Bianca’s live shows have included sets for Sofar Sounds, Tigmus, London Jazz and One Taste Festivals, City Showcase, The Vortex and the CrimeJazz Festival in Amsterdam and Rotterdam, along with additional performances for Playstation, OH TV, & radio play on Radio 1 and 1Xtra. As a lyricist in the Ready Riters song writing collective, Bianca recently co-wrote X-Factor contestant Annastasia Baker’s debut album, resulting in Annastasia’s 2014 MOBO nomination.

Bianca has decided that 2017 is the right time to focus on her own music again, and release some of the songs she’s written over the last few years. Her debut album ‘No Fear Here’ (released in January 2017) is an expansive interpretation of the singer songwriter genre, fusing Bianca’s folk/gospel sensibilities with both Bianca and Femi’s African diasporic perspectives. It was part-funded by the PRS for Music Foundation and produced by critically acclaimed jazz musician and producer Femi Temowo, (George Benson, Andrea Bocelli, Amy Winehouse, The Roots, ESKA & Soweto Kinch).

‘Hidden’ is the third single from Bianca’s debut album ‘No Fear Here’. Directed by Dominic Döring, the visuals are set around the issue of men and mental health and how difficult it is to share these particular struggles with those closest to us. Bianca adds: “Even as a woman, it is never easy to reveal you have battled with any kind of mental oppression. But sharing is often the first step to breaking its power.”