The songwriter behind the likes of Normani, David Guetta, and Anitta reintroduces herself with her first single "Higher" and goes by the name of Absolutely. The singer songwriter from South London brings together a plethora of genres on “Higher.” From pop to R&B and electronic, the debut single has it all with the help of Dave Hamelin, the producer behind artists like Beyoncé and 070 Shake. Alongside the release of "Higher" and its music video, Absolutely tells us about her relationship music and ability to tell stories through her music.
When did you first find your affinity for music?
It’s really always been a part of me, I was born into it. There was always something musical going on in my house growing up, whether it be my Dad randomly playing the piano or my sisters belting songs through the walls, or being woken up on a Sunday to Kirk Franklin in the living room. I recorded my first song at the age of 4 which was my own rendition of ‘Twinkle Twinkle Little Star’. I grew up seeing my sister and my Dad recording songs in the utility room studio and the desire for it to be my turn became strong enough for me to ask my Dad to go in the studio with him around age 10. We would record covers and write songs, and during the process I would be observing and learning until about age 13 when i kicked my Dad out and started making beats and recording myself.
Coming from a gospel background, do you think this influences your attitude towards music?
I grew up in a Christian family. We would go to Church every Sunday and a few times a year my parents would manage to persuade my sisters and I to sing together at a service. In my second album I’m beginning to introduce my faith into the picture a little more and I’m making sure that my roots are still a big part of my music.
How did being raised by a producer affect the way you see music? Does it directly affect some of your practices as a musician?
My Dad, who loves to produce, taught me how to make music and nurtured me into being the independent creative that I am today. He taught me how to record myself, how to produce and how to write songs, along with my 2 older sisters. He now manages all three of us as artists and songwriters. It’s such a blessing to be working closely with my family, as love is at the forefront of every decision we make.
What was the moment that inspired "Higher"? How do you approach the canvas when writing?
Higher wasn’t necessarily inspired by a moment, but it was more so inspired by a feeling. The feeling of excitement about the future, climbing closer to my dreams while letting go of things that weren’t meant to be. I wrote and recorded this song in my home studio. I had the track sent to me from my alien producer friend Dave Hamelin. I did some chopping and restructuring, then free-styled some Melodies into the mic and the lyrics came naturally. The melody starts in a lower register and begins to climb higher as the song progresses before bursting into a euphoric open chorus. In every song I write I use melody to tell a story. Sometimes you can learn more about a feeling from a melody than a lyric, and sometimes it’s easier for times that you can’t quite put your feelings into words.
How are you staying present these days?
I stay present by either dreaming about the future or looking back into my past for song inspiration. But I’m just grateful to be able to do what I love everyday. Music is my therapy and my first language. I write songs to help me understand my emotions and put them in order, and sometimes when it’s hard for me to explain myself to someone, I just write them a song. While life moves so fast around me it’s beautiful to be able to capture these moments in time and make them into art that can live forever.