MEETING GAIDAA: LIVE FROM LOCKDOWN THE SUDANESE ARTIST JOINS US TO DISCUSS NEW MUSIC, LOCKDOWN AND MISSING HUMAN INTERACTION
JULY 21ST 2020
All the way from the Netherlands, Sudanese artist on the rise, Gaidaa, is proving to be one of the most formidable talents blessing the R&B game right now. The singer-songwriter puts her heart and soul in her music, and literally, takes your breathe away with intense writing abilities and a sultry voice that she unleashes on powerful R&B ballads with acoustic instrumentation and vulnerable lyricism.
With over 5 million streams independently, the “Falling Higher” artist proves dreams do come true as long as you work hard and stay passionate. Gaidaa joined us from the Netherlands to discuss the impact lockdown has had on her creatively, her upcoming hopes for the future and why New York offers her so much creative freedom when writing monster records.
I think firstly we must ask, how has the lockdown experience been for you? I also understand you had a big birthday during this time so was it weird celebrating it in such strange conditions?
It’s weird cause right now lockdown is lifted for me and things are pretty much going back to normal, only as of recently however. The majority of lockdown has confrontational (laughs) but overall been really good to be honest. I have had time t myself and to re-learn things about myself so its been really great in that aspect. Celebrating my birthday though, it was actually really peaceful and I thought I was going to be way more upset but, no, I actually really enjoyed it being so super chill.
Being Sudanese and Dutch, where do your main cultural music influences come from?
I think, what I always say, is growing up in the Netherlands and in an international school has massively influenced my sound, my style and my personality. My dad’s a musician first and foremost and I am pretty sure I am a musician because my dad is. I’m aware I have always been drawn to rhythm and melodies from a young age so I guess I’m just kind of a mixture of different cultural and sonic influences.
Was music always your first passion or is it something you fell in love with gradually?
Music has always, always been my passion. I’ve been singing since I can remember, I know it sounds dumb but it’s like as soon as I nailed the song “Happy Birthday” it was a wrap! (laughs) I’ve always been drawn to music and singing and just being creative.
I know you recently surpassed 5 million streams with ‘A Storm On A Summers Day’ which is an incredible body of work, how does that feel as an artist to know that many people are appreciating your craft?
It’s crazy, it’s weird and of course surreal. It’s also desensitizing as well, I know that sounds really odd to say but the number, it doesn’t even make sense to me. I can’t even imagine it, like, I don’t even know what that number is. It does put the pressure on you however, so in that sense, it’s f*cked up my view on streams and my expectations of myself.
That’s understandable. I know you wrote ‘Falling Higher’ whilst exploring New York, is that a place you would like to re-visit and what is it about the city that gave you so much inspiration?
It was my second trip to New York when I wrote the record. I was always, from a young age, desperate to go. Just to explore it and randomly do sessions in New York and fall in love with the city on a first-hand experience, was just…I can’t even put it into words. It truly is one of my favorite places in the whole world. There’s so much life and love and it’s always been seen as like the ‘dream city’ so when I was actually out there, writing, recording, meeting people, doing gigs it was just like, so wild to me. I really was living my dream.
You speak of living your dream, what does the future of Gaidaa look like? What’s the next dream, the end goal?
I don’t know. There’re so many things I want to do. Lockdown has given me a reality check of me and myself and I don’t want to look too far ahead. I go on vibes and I focus day by day and I don’t want to bound myself to anything.
That’s the best way to be! Is live performance something that is of great importance to you and what’s it been like releasing material and not having that human interaction?
It’s a huge part of it for me, even from the very beginning! I just remember my gigs and performances way back when I would always freestyle a whole set just because. I love it, the performance is such an integral part for me. I love the creating side of things of course but I need human interaction. I need to feel a room of energy and feel complete.