FROM AFRICA to NEWTOWN meet TINSAE!
FROM AFRICA to NEWTOWN
See how TINSAE plans to set this world alight!
“I feel obligated to be able to bring the world closer to the land from which I was born.”
With Ian Browne Shamrock News
My pal Derek Turner of Quarterpipe Studio asked me to have a listen to an emerging young talent from Sydney who he had the pleasure of producing the EP
“FUN WHILE IT LASTED”.
Now, I am a fan of old-style RAP, sure, and old school chill-groove 90’s hip hop, but I very rarely cover stories around R&B. BUT as soon as I heard Tinsae’s song Loco, I was immediately impressed! It has such an abundance of joy and summery flamboyance, very much like the author himself. Similarly, to the positive and inspirational energy of Yolngu songster Baker Boy (Danzal James Baker), I hope Australians and international audiences tap into this young man’s positive life force…
“I do this by creating music people can learn from and actually take something away from that may help them understand themselves better and the things they go through.”
Meet TINSAE GUTA
Where do you call home and is this expressed within your sound? Does ‘home’ inspire you to write music?
It’s always been hard to answer this question to be completely honest as I was born in Ethiopia but raised in Brisbane Australia. Growing up I also felt like I was living a double life. I would spend the day at school with all my Aussie friends then come home to an Ethiopian household. I was never really able to be one or the other, I was always kinda lingering between the two.
In saying so, I guess musically I could say my energy and rhythm comes from my Ethiopian blood, but my experiences in life and in relationships have grown from my time in Australia.
One thing I will say though, as I have gotten older, I have really begun to embrace my African side a lot more and am now exploring more and more ways to express that in my sound. Also, I moved to Sydney in 2018 and have been living here since. The reason was actually because I felt living in Brisbane wasn’t giving me the inspiration and drive to create anything special, but since moving its definitely fair to say my writing has evolved immensely and the environment continues to allow me to create music that will one day propel me to where I want to go!
You have such generous and happy songs. Describe a song that you would like people to listen to most. Where did the idea come from?
The song I would like people to listen to the most would be “Know Your Name.” This song I would say was my favourite and for a few reasons.
Firstly, vocally I felt it was my best performance at the time and secondly, it came to me quite seamlessly. When I was writing it, there’s was an amazing vibe to it that made me feel like I was above the clouds, floating. The song just had an energy that kinda took me back to the time I first went back and visited my birthplace since leaving. Not to mention it made me feel like dancing, which for me is always the first sign that it’s going to be a good song.
The idea was basically based off the initial stage of falling in love or meeting somebody that would eventually become quite a significant part of your life. The song was meant to have a certain innocence that would hopefully remind everyone on how amazing love can feel, especially when it first comes around.
What areas of your identity do you explore through music?
I do try and explore as much as possible, but so far, I would say my relationships with women. At this point in my life, I feel like I’m learning a lot about myself and how relationships evolve and can end. This just naturally seems to be the most dominant topic when it comes to writing.
However, in saying so I always like to write with the intention to inspire others and give hope. I do this by creating music people can learn from and actually take something away from, that may help them understand themselves better and the things they go through.
Who are the artists you admire most, and can we hear them in your own music?
The Artists I admire the most are Michal Jackson, Chris Brown, Trey Songs, Usher, Tupac, and Nelly.
These guys have helped build my love and passion for music as well as style/technique. I often reference their songs to better understand how I can approach my own music, hence the influence you may hear in my sound.
… “This is really where I want to dive deeper and create music that embraces
my own country's sound and style.”
… Are there any other genres that tickle your fancy? What do they bring to your sound?
My love for music outside of my culture really began with Michael Jackson. I always admired his energy and attention to detail as well as his passion. Over the years this has expanded to the guys I mentioned earlier, which is really when my love and interest in RnB music came into play. More recently though, as I also mentioned earlier, I have begun to take things back to my own culture and have really started to build my sound around Afro music. Tapping into this market really gives me the opportunity and platform to create music that consists of the things I’m passionate about: dancing, love, storytelling and inspiring others.
Afro music is quite a broad umbrella of genres with styles that come from many different countries in Africa and the Caribbean. This is really where I want to dive deeper and create music that embraces my own countries sound and style. I feel the Ethiopian scene hasn’t really been explored or brought to the world the way a lot of the other African countries have. Therefore, I feel obligated to be able to bring the world closer to the land from which I was born.
Have you performed live? What else in life sustains you?
I have performed a few times over the years. Not as much as I would have liked to. Mainly due to the fact that I felt I needed to really master my skills first.
From 2018, for two years I was receiving vocal lessons in Parramatta, where we had to also perform at four shows during the course of the year. This gave me some confidence but still felt at the time I had bit to go.
I also performed at a national managers conference, for my previous work company. They had organised a talent show, where 5 or 6 of us were nominated to perform for an audience of about 150 guests. This till date was probably my biggest performance and definitely gave me a huge boost in confidence.
More recently though I have been doing open mic gigs in Newtown, just to really master my performing ability and really get to a place where it will start to feel quite natural.
Outside of music I play Soccer and basketball and workout a few times a week to keep fit. Aside from music my other dream growing up was actually to be a professional basketball player, even though that didn’t work out exactly, I still try to keep up with my fitness levels and in fact is where I learned a lot of my discipline and ability to constantly work hard towards my goals in music.
Dreaming Big: where are you headed to in the future?
What would you like to be doing over the
next 10 years?
Besides making the world a better place and continuing to inspire people, in 10 years I would like to be recognised as a Grammy Award ‘winning artist’, fulfilling my purpose in life as being a true example of excellence!!
♫TINSAE: FUN WHILE IT LASTED … https://tinyurl.com/9s36janh