Saturday, 2 November 2013

NIGHT AFTER NIGHT: Our interview with 'calm and chilled' singer-songwriter Wana Shibemba!

Photo: Our next interview will be with Liverpool-based soul/pop artist Wana Shibemba! Stay tuned! AB Records
1 - What was your first musical memory and what pushed you towards perusing a career in the record industry?
"My first musical memory was of being in a small children's choir started by my older cousin. It was the first time I participated in music consciously, so I guess that's where it all started. However it wasn't really until my music teacher at college said I was good enough to go to uni that I really started seeing music as a viable career option."
2 - Had you been involved with any other bands prior to becoming a solo artist as Wana Shibemba?
"I had been in a metal band back in high school playing bass, which was a lot of fun and very loud, but didn't really get past the garage phase. Then I started a Strokes influenced band called Magic Alex which did ok but we only played a small handful of gigs. I experienced playing and gigging in bands properly since I started university."
3 - Why did you choose to become a solo artist instead of forming a band?
"The choice of being a solo artist is purely a way of releasing the creativity I have in a different way. I'm a bassist and currently play in several bands at uni were my role isn't as focused on the songwriting, although I do still contribute. I just find that as a songwriter I like to express things I see and feel, and that I needed to go down a path that suited that, and also complimented my voice, which has taken a while to get to where it is and is still very much in the development stage."
4 - How would you describe the sound of Wana Shibemba?
"I like to think of my sound as reflecting my personality. People always say that I come across as very calm and chilled, so I like to try and communicate that in my music. Hopefully that's what everyone who has heard it so far has gotten. So a chilled vibe is definitely my signature."
5 - You recently released "Night After Night" through Soundcloud. What is this song about and what influenced it?
"The inspiration for the song was actually taken from something someone told me at uni, which was basically that they went out and got drunk literally every night of the week, and I was kind of taken aback because it's a pretty extreme pattern and it spurred me on to talk about the party lifestyle which can sometimes lead people to negate other responsibilities, or in this scenario uni work."
6 - Any new songs in the pipeline?
"I have several new songs that I'm working on, however, my main focus at the moment is getting a band together to start gigging around Liverpool. It's currently coming along really nicely so it's really just a matter of arranging the songs to fit a band sound as apposed to the acoustic sound it derives from. I plan on recording another demo relatively soon in order to give people an idea of my development but also just to keep people interested. Although I think, because I'm a very new artist, I don't feel to much pressure to have to get a lot of stuff recorded and put up as I'm still kind of finding my feet."
7 - When can fans be expecting the next official release?
"So to follow on from that I guess the next (unofficial) official release will be in a few months. My first single is still a while away but I definitely want to upload some demos so people have something to go to when I'm not gigging."
8 - Do you have any 'rituals' before going on stage?
"I don't think I have any rituals, when I start to get really amped up for it I may jump up and down a few times just to relieve some of that pent up energy, but other than that I like to just get on stage. I used to get really nervous about performing but now it's kind of changed into an adrenaline rush feeling."
9 - Any live dates coming up?
"I currently haven't got any dates confirmed but I have a few in the pipeline, and possibly a show supporting a phenomenal band who are playing Liverpool in November, but that is still in the formative stages."
10 - Who would be your dream collaboration?
"My dream collaboration would be John Mayer hands down. He's my favourite artist and is the main reason that I started to focus on songwriting. If I even get to meet him one day I would see that as mission accomplished."
11 - Who would be in your dream super group?
"My dream supergroup would contain Pino Palladino on bass, Dave Grohl on drums and Jimi Hendrix on guitar with Stevie Wonder playing keys and singing. That would be a pretty crazy combination."
1 - Favourite Beatle?
"I don't know I have one, I'm not much of a Beatles fan I must confess, although I definitely appreciate what they did for music, I've just never seem to listen to them."
2 - Favourite band?
"John Mayer hands down, he's just ridiculously good at everything, except maybe dating."
3 - Favourite new band?
"This is a very tough one, but I'm gonna have to go for Haim, their album is phenomenal. It's literally like one hit after another."
4 - Favourite song?
"Wheels by John Mayer."
5 - Favourite album?
"Continuum by John Mayer."
6 - Vinyl, CD or download?
"I'm a download baby so it has to be download all the way, although I am really interested in trying to get a record player."
7 - Style icon?
"Not sure if I have one, I'm not much a of a fashion aficionado."
8 - Favourite clothing brand?
"Again no favourite type, I tend to have a few different ones here and there."
9 - Favourite film?
"Three way tie between Pulp Fiction, Zombieland and Pocahontas."
10 - Favourite TV show?
"Made In Chelsea."
11 - Who would play you in a film of your life?
"Jaden Smith, because I'd want Will Smith but he'd be to old at that point."
12 - Favourite food?
"Anything with pasta."
13 - Football team?
"Chelsea FC, best team in the world."
Hope you enjoyed this feature on Wana Shibemba! Check out our previous feature on Lights That Change!
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