Q&A with Australian Reggae Singer – NATTALI RIZE Talks About Recording Her New Album at Bob Marley’s Studio and More!
Posted On 31 Jul 2015
Australian reggae singer, Nattali Rize just wrapped a 10-date US tour opening for Michael Franti, with press praising her “powerful (The Pier)” stage presence and Michael himself calling the singer a “bright light in the world with a vision that extends beyond the stage”.
She was recently in Kingston, Jamaica where she recorded her solo debut ’New Era Frequency’ at Bob Marley’s Tuff Gong Studios and just returned to the US on for a 10-date tour opening for New Zealand-based reggae group Katchafire.
All Access Music writer, Nicole DeRosa got to catch up with the talented singer between shows. Read more in their interview below!
Hi Nattali! How are you today? What’s on the agenda today besides our interview?
Greetings, I am well thank you! I am here at The Belly Up Tavern in San Diego about to do a show with our good friends Katchafire.
So, first things first, you just wrapped a 10 date US tour opening for Michael Franti (who I just saw up at Wanderlust Lake Tahoe) and who says about you, “she is a bright light in the world with a vision that extends beyond the stage.” How was touring with Michael? What were the highlights for you?
Touring with Michael Franti & Spearhead is always a joy. They bring an energy and love to each and every show that is beyond compare. Never before have I seen an artist get the room full of multiple generations, jumping and dancing instantly! Not just that but Michael’s consciousness and story telling are inspiring, his entire crew and team working behind the scenes carry the same positive energy that he does so touring with them is a great family vibe!
For those that are not familiar with you and your music, how did you get your start? Who or what was the catalyst for you to want to live the life of a musical gypsy?
It was the first time I picked up the guitar and that was the very instant I decided what I was going to do.
“When I picked up that guitar, I picked up my musical, spiritual life. My mother was my first guitar teacher, she taught me how to play the 12bar blues and I fell in love with blues music for years after that, learning slide guitar and other styles of guitar playing with that bluesy rootsy feel.”
I’d always loved reggae as a kid so it was also natural that my music would also head in that direction, most definitely as an evolving singer and reggae has been a huge inspiration for me.
Who have been your inspirations growing up that also inspire you today?
Bob Marley & The Wailers, Janis Joplin, Jimmy Hendrix, Santana, Peter Tosh, Miles Davis, Ernest Ranglin, Fela Kuti to name a few.
You were just in Kingston, Jamaica where you were recording your solo debut New Era Frequency at Bob Marley’s Tuff Gong Studios. How was that recording at such an infamous studio?
Recording at Tuff Gong Studios is an important experience for any musician who loves Bob’s music and reggae on a whole. It is a great space filled with a vibe not felt anywhere else.
What did you learn between collaborations and playing live, that you felt you wanted to infuse into your upcoming album, New Era Frequency?
I wanted to collaborate with Jamaican production team Notis. We met in Australia and had an undeniable and instant connection that led to the writing and recording of our song “Rebel Love”, the very first night we met.
To live in Jamaica for a while to write and record with Notis taught me a lot about different styles of writing and the speed at which Jamaican musicians can work at with lots of creative content flowing, it was great for me to be around that energy and the community of conscious roots musicians coming out of Kingston and Jamaica with their strength of sound, words and intention…
We’ve now moved into the live show of our New Era Frequency, and it’s a joy to take the music we’ve made into the stage arena and spread our conscious collaboration beyond the studio and into the ears, hearts and minds of our world family.
What was the inspiration for your new single, “Generations Will Rize”? Did you help come up with the treatment for the video as well?
The inspiration for “Generations Will Rize” is the growing roots level, community , student, indigenous, non government, Truth Movements that are Rizing Up and reclaiming their power from a system that they know doesn’t serve them nor the interests of their health, happiness or future.
We are inspired by all of our brothers and sisters worldwide who are standing up and saying ‘enough is enough’ but also taking the steps to help transition their words into actions into the carving out of a new reality… A new paradigm of thinking and awareness is what is in the process of happening and we are here to give momentum, support and amplification of that movement through our music, our lyrics and our intentions.. We come to share this energy and give thanks to all who are following their true path for the good of all living beings in this planetary reality.
And yes, I was a part of the video creative team. I always like to be involved in all the aspects of creating this art.
Who is in your current playlist? What artists or bands are in current rotation for you?
Frank Ocean, Pharoah Monch, Peter Tosh, Burning Spear, Ms Hill, Robert Randolph & the Family Band, Capleton, Chronix , Christopher Ellis, Katchafire,
Gillian Welch, Midnite, Raging Fyah, UB40.
What’s on tap next for you, Nattali? What are you most excited about for this year?
At the moment I feel most excited about the live shows, about staying on tour for as long as possible and connecting with people. But also continue to look forward to the creation and release of a lot of new studio material with a new era sound.
I love collaborating with my crew and brainstorming new ways to be present and impact our time on Earth.. to be amongst our community everywhere around the globe and to keep using our gifts to shine light into the darkness of current world culture in order to bring about a new world era of conscious culture and light. One Love…We will keep striving towards it. Peace.
To learn more about NATTALI RIZE , visit her website HERE .
Photo Credit: Carlo Lion