Lime interview - Music
London’s new summer sunshine on the Music Hit list.
How did you become involved in the music industry?
I’ve always had a passion for music since I was young. My dad was music manager so I have always been around music.
My personal musical break came after I won MTV’s Hugo Urban Rules in 2008 although prior to that I had attended Sylvia Youngs Theatre School and worked with Basement Jaxx.
What is your background Meleka, where are you from?
I like to think of myself as a little traveller as I have moved around quite a bit. I’m originally from West London, but spent my teenage years in Buckinghamshire. Now I reside in both, I spend a few days in the hustle and bustle of London and when I need a bit of quiet time I sneak off to the countryside.
Where do you feel your strongest skills lie, in singing or song writing? Or are you ambidextrous in both fields.
I like that I got the ambidextrous option, so I’ll take that. I love doing both. I think that as an artist you have a few key peak years but as a writer other people can sing your songs. You can last forever and exists in genres and places that maybe you personally would never be heard.
With Song writing what works best for you, where do you get your inspiration for song writing from?
Everywhere. I don’t have a specific formula but lyrics, words, sentences they inspire me. I might be driving and see a slogan or a word on and a sign and end up writing a song about it.
You have had remarkable success in a short time have you found that a big surprise?
I have been surprised, absolutely. The response I receive from people who listen to my music is something you can never predict and that’s an amazing worthwhile feeling. It means a lot especially as I write my own songs so it’s nice to know that people are connecting with my words and the things I talk/sing about.
How would you describe your musical style, Music Journalists are so keen to categorise music, would you describe your genre as Dubstep as the Dubstep massive are all over your latest track?
I would describe my sound as a mix of pop and soulful vocals. I think Beat dun Drop does have a dubstep feel in the music and then I bring the soulful vocal. So it’s a mix of genres.
You have got some fantastic collobarions under your musical belt if you could collaborate with anyone else who would that be? Yes they can be dead or alive.
I would love to work with Linda Perry. I think she is an amazingly talented woman. I am a huge fan of Pink and Christina Aguilera and I know she has worked quite closely with them both. Her song writing ability is immense.
Are you ready for the Festival season (weather permitting), where can our readers catch you at some of the summer music festivals.
I am definitely ready. I got a pair of Hunters for Christmas so I’m fully prepared weather permitting or not. I’ll be performing in Sheffield at the Jamaican Independence Festival on August 5th which I’m really looking forward to.
What do you do to relax, away from the music scene?
I’m really into reading and writing. It really calms me down and gives me time to live inside my imagination.
I have recently started my own blog called World Of Meleka.com, and I have a feature on it called Moral Of The Story, which is a bit like my diary. It’s where I tell my readers about something that happened to me and then I give them the moral of the story. The first one is about an embarrassing doctors appointment!
Meleka who do you look up to musically, who is your musical inspiration?
I have so many. I love the glamour and craftsmanship of people like Doris Day, Julie Andrews and Fred Astaire. I also love the glitz and the energy of people Tina Turner and Diana Ross and then the lyrical content of The Police, Bob Marley, Stevie Wonder… Itt’s so hard to pick one.
What book did you last read?
A book called One Fifth Avenue by Candace Bushnell. The book’s about an Actress, a journalist and a socialite who all live in Manhattan. It’s full of gossip and glamour. What more can a girl ask for?
Will you be performing at any of the Olympics music events in London this summer?
I haven't been booked to play any Olympic events over summer but I'm really behind the Olympics and am excited about everyone in London coming together for it!
So are you a Carnival Gal? (Notting Hill Carnival that is), if so can you tell our readers about one of your best Notting Hill Carnival experiences?
I am absolutely a Carnival girl. I used to be in the precession as a child. I would spend my summer holidays making my costume and then party in it for the weekend.
In 2009 I performed on five stages, did three radio interviews and then went on to perform at two Carnival after parties, all wearing high heels! That has to be the best Carnival so far for me. Although I am looking forward to going back and doing a similar run this year too, so who knows.
What’s your favourite place in London?
My favourite places in London have to be the West End, Oxford Street, Trafalgar Sq, Piccadilly Circus, Leicester Sq. Hyde Park and Central London. The city never sleeps and there’s always something to do or something new to see. It’s beautiful.
Do you have any words for your UK fans?
Thank you for your support so far I hope you keep enjoying the music.
Allyson Ava Brown