From a very early age, 22-year-old Mali Hayes had a good idea where she was heading. When your family consists of singers, classical composers and musical engineers, doing anything other than music is hard to imagine.
Zubble met up with Mali to find out about her inspirations, favourite food and an incredible music moment. It was great to get to know the self-confessed foodie, dancer and singer/songwriter on an unusually warm winter morning.
Check out the interview below.
Can you describe your music in three words?
That’s really difficult. If I was to say influences it’d be spiritual, experience and journey.
What 3 things are essential when you're writing music?
1. My guitar - even though I can't play it very well!
2. I've got a special gold notebook that I have specifically for writing lyrics.
3. I really like to be on my own with loads of candles and incense burning.
Being from a musical family, has this influenced your music career?
Yeah I would say it has because it's all I've known since I've been growing up. I've been on tours with my mum which gave me the insight really young - so I was like yeah, this is something I want to do when I grow up!
Do you still look towards your family for input?
I do - my grandad! I don't think he writes music anymore but if you ask him what song is playing on the radio he’ll be able to tell you what key it’s in and all that! My mum as well because I work closely with her so I get a lot of input.
What has been your best music moment so far?
There's been quite a few but I'd have to say being asked to sing with Tito Jackson. That was pretty insane! It was a really good experience and I would have done it for the rest of my life as it was so much fun! It was one night that we got to do it and when I get to see pictures of him I think OMG I got to sing with him! It's really cool. I'd say it's a really big achievement and a once in a lifetime opportunity.
Sounds amazing! How did that come about?
I got a call off someone really randomly. They asked if I was free on Friday to do backing vocals for Tito Jackson. I was like err let me check my diary… yeah! He said he'd heard about me from a couple of other people. I even got a nice watch from Tito himself which was nice. So it was really out of the blue but one of the best experiences of my musical career.
You’re based in Manchester and Leeds - do you find it hard to get your music heard in other cities?
Yeah I do a little bit. Obviously anyone from any city is going to have a following in their own town. A lot of people try venture out to London as well - that’s another place you can get noticed quite a lot. But you have to be in it and go there to really have a scene down there.
I've been quite lucky in the sense that I was played by Jamie Cullum on BBC2. He plays a lot of my influences on his show like D’Angelo and Lianne La Havas. I guess you have to know the right people to contact.
What are your thoughts on Zubble?
I think it’s great! It's a really good platform not just for artists but for the public who are using it as well. It's a new platform that is due. It's nice to have something fresh for people to use and explore. After using Zubble, I'm really excited to see it fully up and running!
Do you see artists today benefitting from the platform?
Oh yeah definitely! I think artists can benefit from all types of platforms but it's really dependent on the following you have. Whereas with Zubble, the music is gonna be distributed to people who like that genre. So it's more of a straightforward insight into that rather than you searching for what you like. The music is brought to you - it's nice not to do the work sometimes!
How is 2017 looking for you and what are you working on right now?
I am currently writing for my debut album which I’m really excited about. I don't have a deadline yet as I want to make sure it’s something I’m really proud. Other than that, lots of gigs and collaborating with new people. Maybe do a bit of travelling as well. I'm really excited to see what it will bring!
What's your favourite thing to do outside of music?
It sounds really boring but I'm definitely a foodie. Thai is my favourite. I also really like dancing and have trained since I was really young but stopped when I came to uni. Just getting back into it! Eating and dancing. Big contrast but that's what it is!
With an album on the way, surrounded by great support and having just been accepted onto the Future Bubblers programme, Mali Hayes’ exciting journey is destined for big things in 2017. Make sure you check out her profile on Zubble!
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