With tears in our eyes we waved and cheered as The Great Spy Experiment bade farewell to Singapore music at House of Riot’s triple bill night in June. An evening with iNCH, The Great Spy Experiment & Charlie Lim who displayed local music at its best and most heart-warming.
From 20 to 22 September, one lucky artiste in Singapore gets the gig of a lifetime – the Reeperbahn Festival in Hamburg, Germany. In conjunction with Music Services Asia, 26 musicians are vying for a spot on the German stage, raring to go and show the world (or Germany, at least) what Singapore music is all about.
1. Tell us more about yourself
I’m a 24-year old singer-songwriter from Singapore and have been playing music since I could talk. Moved to Melbourne when I was 15, somehow managed to top the state of Victoria for music performance and decided then that I was going to be a full-time musician. Came back for NS and served with the music company, then did a 4-year music degree at Monash University which I just finished…all the while shuttling back and forth from Melbourne to Singapore while constantly playing shows around the region. I released an EP last year which received positive response across Australia and Asia, so now I’m focusing on writing new material before my next tour in August.
I’m a bit of a sponge when it comes to musical influences, but I basically gravitate towards anything that has a lot of soul. I love the whole singer-songwriter/folk-rock thing because it places a lot of emphasis on lyric and melody, but I’m also a huge fan of R&B/neo-soul because of groove, phrasing and harmony. Though at the end of the day, genre is just a vehicle to get the message across. All I’m trying to do is distill everything I love about music and use it to produce something that is authentic and seamless to my own ears, and hope that it would mean something to people on a deeper emotional and visceral level.
2. What made you enter the contest?
I’ve been dying to play in Europe, let alone at a festival. These competition-type things are always a bit of a long shot, but at the same time I feel confident that my band and I would leave a positive impression on the crowd at Reeperbahn, and it would just be such an honour to represent not only Singapore but Asian independent music as well. I signed up for this because I believe my band and I have what it takes to carry that responsibility and take the music to the next level.
3. Why should people vote for you?
I’m hoping that people will vote primarily because they like what they hear, rather than just for the sake of supporting a friend in a popularity contest. Voters need to consciously decide which local artist sounds musically unique, is technically proficient and experienced in a live setting, and has the most export potential and ability to win over different crowds that aren’t necessarily from Asia. I really believe that my music covers those grounds, and hope people would feel the same. It would be an incredible privilege to be part of the festival, so if you like what you hear, please give us your vote!
To vote for Charlie Lim, visit the contest page here.
Photo courtesy of Charlie Lim