Who is Shanaaz Abrahams?
There are so many different layers. I am a mother, wife, daughter, singer, employee, chef and dancer. Extrovert/introvert at times. There are times I love being around loads of people and other times I like being alone with my own thoughts and my music. Although being on stage is where I feel at home.
What/who got you into music?
I think music is in your blood, you’re born with that rhythm. I always remember music being a part of my life, since I was a kid. My mom, brothers, uncles, aunts all love music and also play & sing in bands so it’s in our genes and it’s something that you latch on to from a very young age.
Tell us more about your typical day?
Shoo, I snooze my alarm for like 4 times before I wake up. Get ready, drive to work, it’s like a 40 minute drive, but I don’t mind because I get to sing in the car. Then it’s work, work, work, work, work. Drive home (again car rehearsal). Get home, help my son with homework, go for a jog, make supper, shower, short rehearsal, watch Moana with my 2 year old… AGAIN! Then its bedtime, what a day!
How would you describe your sound?
I would say it’s a little bit of everything. A little bit of pop, House, RnB, Reggae and Jazz. I do not like to limit myself to a certain genre. I won’t even mind doing a bit of hip hop & classical either. I believe that an artist needs to be versatile.
Tell us about the best part of your work
I love the spotlight, I really do. I love having all eyes focused on me and all ears listening. I love performing because that gives you the opportunity to get your message across without being interrupted. Kind of like a super power of sorts.
Where do you see yourself work in the next 3 years?
I would definitely like to do more originals & collaborations. I want my tracks to get airplay on radio stations and a music video or two on Trace.
What is your favourite childhood memory?
Well, for me I remember when I was about 7 years old. There used to be this guy and he would have like little shows in front of the corner shop. He would play music and the kids would dance and sing and he would even give away little prizes. I remember I went up once and I was singing Whitney Houston’s, I will always love you. It was amazing! That was my first taste of performing!
How can artists use music to influence positive change within the community?
I think by being a positive role model to kids and conveying positive messages will definitely influence the community in a positive way. Kids imitate all these artists they hear on radio and see on television. So it’s up to us to make sure that what they look up to is something good. Something that will give them hope and that will boost their self-esteem. To show them that life isn’t all about being a thug. God, Family, education, self-respect, making the most of your situation and thriving to be the best you that you can be, these are the things that matter and doing what you love no matter what your friends think.
Who is your inspiration/role model?
Well my family especially my mom inspires me because I always want to make them proud. Musically I have lots of role models. I love the old school guys, like Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson, Bob Marley those guys. They made the classics, timeless music that never goes out of style, “lucky for you that’s what I like!” and of course I love me some Bruno and of course I love my local artists because us artists need to support one another!
Do you think that it is easy for new artists to get their music on radio?
It’s not easy, but never, ever give up. If music is what you love then make music and don’t conform to other people’s standards. Have your own sound and relay your own message, you are unique and that’s what makes you stand out from the crowd. So keep submitting your music, 1 day a door will open.
What is your least favourite thing about the music scene lately?
I don’t like the way artists put one another down. We are all out here hustling and trying to make it to the top. We need to help each other and give constructive criticism. Some artists become very arrogant and forget where they started. No matter how far you get you must always remember to stay humble.
When you’re not working on music, what else keeps you busy?
Family, home & work.
What was the last gift you received?
A pair of Nikes
If you could work with any artist/producer, who would it be?
Artist would have to be my favourite, Bruno Mars just because he is soooooo amazing and my favourite artist and such a phenomenal artist! Producer, would be Sketchy Bongo because I love his sound and at the moment everything he touches turns to gold.
Are you a night owl or morning person?
I ain’t no morning person. Definitely a night owl. Like I always say, I come alive at night. In a perfect world I would sleep all day and perform at night! Sighhhh!
Which is the one song you would like to shoot a video for and why?
I would like to shoot a video for my latest collaboration called “Awesome” with DJ Masaladi and Ricardo Dyson. Simply because it’s just so awesome. I love the positive message it puts out there and it’s definitely something our youth needs right now, some positivity!
What would we find in your fridge right now?
Let’s see, canola eggs, butter, juice, fruit & veg, food, pineapple yoghurt (my fav) & definitely mushrooms (love it!) milk, cheese, polony, medicine (we’re crazy, need our meds lol), Steri-Stumpi and Coke zero.
How do you prepare for a performance?
Rehearse, rehearse and rehearse. I also jog to keep fit and to increase my stamina.
What has been your highlight in 2016?
Working with my good friend Ricardo Dyson and DJ Masaladi recording our latest track. Also being in studio with Moeneeb Galant, he’s a genius! I was quiet for a while and this is just what I needed to get me back into the swing of things and I feel that this is the big one!
What is your most embarrassing moment?
Well what I usually find embarrassing, more funny really is when people wave to someone behind me and I’m like hi!! Only to realise the wave was not for me but hey, smile & wave! LOL
What advice would you give to a new artist that’s hoping to make it out there?
Just do you and do what you love. Try to get out there and perform wherever you can, no matter how small the gig. If your first track doesn’t get any airplay go back to the drawing board and try again. This industry is not for the feint hearted and usually fame doesn’t come overnight, be prepared to work your butt off. If you want it bad enough, it will happen.
Twitter: @naazchic | Instagram: Shanaaz_x_Abrahams