Rapidly rising electronic artist TSHA speaks about her musical growth, upcoming EP, favourite moments, and much more.
- Full look Zara
TSHA is the ultimate mirror image of the music she produces – feel good beats that radiate nothing short of positivity and whimsy. Like a firecracker, she’s packed with pure talent and ready to ignite her fire across the electro-pop market. The London-based artist is no stranger to experimentation and innovativeness; in fact, it’s her ambitious nature that’s allowed her to bloom as one of music’s most promising young creators. Recently named Apple Music’s ‘Up Next UK Artist,” and dubbed “one to watch” by the likes of Billboard and NME, it’s only a matter of time before we see TSHA’s name in lights on international marquees.
Purely a self-taught virtuoso, the producer has been uniquely positioned to refine her craft in a way that is true to both her personal and artistic development. Now, you can experience the genius behind her musical magic from a fresh perspective. TSHA’s forthcoming EP, OnlyL, is set to drop on August 27th, marking a new era full of playfulness and ingenuity. Teasing its release, she’s already offered the first single from the project, “OnlyL” (which shares a namesake with the title of its EP counterpart). On Instagram, the star described the track as an ode to “changing the pace of life and focusing on the things that bring love and joy.” And in a world driven by chaos and unknowns, it may just be the antidote we need to cure our post-pandemic blues.
Ready to begin her reign as music’s most vibrant electronic princess, TSHA is eagerly taking a quick dive back into tour life. Catch her melting hearts and kicking off dance parties across the United Kingdom all summer 2021, a testament to her simple, undeniable mission: creating good music for happy feels. Many already agree–just check her streaming statistics reaching far beyond the multi-millions. TSHA’s positivity is simply contagious, and a single push of the play button is merely inviting listeners to fall into an endless frenzy.
Since her debut with 2018’s Dawn EP, it’s more than clear her collection of records represents her ever-growing skillset and wisdom. While she’s tested the waters within a variety of genres, there’s an obvious string between each track that ties her entire discography together into music’s most consistent body of work. She’s an enigma of love and light with a stellar sonic ear, and despite the many projects shared, we’ve hardly scratched the surface of her potential.
As curious as we are? NOTION sat down with TSHA to uncover the nuances behind her favorite music moments, ingenious creative process, and what it means to mature as a young artist in today’s competitive world.
Be sure to pre-save OnlyL ahead of its August 27th release on all platforms.
Your EP ‘Flowers’ was the last full-length taste of new music since 2019’s ‘Moonlight’ How have you grown since your last release?
How I write music has changed quite a bit since my last release as my main focus has been on writing for the album and creating something that is more cohesive. I’ve been getting to grips with how a full body of work should look and sound, having certain tracks that do specific things within a larger capacity. Working to write an album and working to write an EP are two completely diﬀerent processes and this shift has definitely altered my writing process as well as how I sound.
Announcing the release of the ‘OnlyL’ EP on Instagram, you noted how “the past year has caused [you] to reflect on many things, but learning to slow down a little has been a real lesson.” How did your introspective time impact your music-making?
Having more time to write music has allowed me to spend time learning new things, exploring diﬀerent sounds, and really perfecting certain aspects of my craft.
- Full look PLT
When release day hits, what’s the best place to listen to ‘OnlyL’?
I think the best place to listen to ‘OnlyL’ would be on a sunny day in a park, on your way to a festival, or whilst watching a sunset.
You released your debut EP ‘Dawn’ in 2018, and your sound has matured in the best way possible since! If music could talk, what would ‘Dawn’ say to your latest drop “OnlyL” (the lead single of TSHA’s new EP by the same name)?
“Well done, your hard work has paid oﬀ. Keep pushing, keep evolving, keep learning”.
Where are you while creating your music? Do you flow the best in a studio session or does the magic come from a comfy home set-up?
Writing music for me flows better in the studio or in a dedicated music space, even if that’s at home. I’ve done both and they have both worked for me. I do particularly enjoy being able to leave the house and go to an environment that is designated for work, I think that really helps me to concentrate and increases my focus as there are less distractions. It feels good, especially since the pandemic, to leave the house and go to work, it’s almost like a 9-5 that it provides structure and discipline, plus it gets you out of the house!
It’s incredibly refreshing to have self-taught artists like yourself continue to make major waves. What’s your learning process like? How do you teach yourself a new skill for your musical toolkit?
I’ve taken online courses to learn new musical skills, but I find speaking to other producers and learning from other writers really useful. I have lots of friends that are producers and writers from who I learn a lot; they’ve helped to guide me in the right direction. I’ve found that it can be super hard to learn a new skill as an adult, it can be a hard slog (and it still is really) to force yourself to focus, sit down and actually hold yourself accountable for your own learning. To me, the best way to learn a new skill is to break it down into diﬀerent stages and work out exactly what makes up the elements of that particular thing, and to take your time so that you’re able to understand it all.
With the world opening back up, you have a few shows lined up. What are you most excited for fans to hear live?
I’m so excited to play the second single oﬀ my EP, “OnlyL”, as I wrote the track especially for clubs and festivals. I’m playing at a few diﬀerent festivals over the summer, like Field Day, GALA Festival, and Lost Village, and I’m really looking forward to playing that tune out to everyone in a live setting.
Be it from your own shows or concerts for artists you’ve seen in the past, is there a live music moment that stands out to you?
A musical moment that stands out for me is when I saw Bonobo play live at Brixton Academy. It wasn’t the first time I’d seen him, but it was a really special night for me as it set me on the path to pursuing my career and me getting to the point where I am now.
You’ve been dubbed “one to watch” tons of press. What makes you one to watch? Is there a secret? If so, let us know!
I don’t know what makes me one to watch really, I don’t know why I’ve been dubbed that. I’m just working away, there is no secret. Believe in yourself and just go for it.
You’ve collaborated with an amazing set of artists from Gabrielle Aplin to Trio Da Kali. What do you learn from each musician that helps you create? Why makes it important to your sound?
I think working with diﬀerent artists like Gabrielle Aplin and Trio Da Kali has taught me how to work with diﬀerent types of artists and their various sounds and vocal styles. I’m not an amazing vocal producer or anything like that but I’ve learned how to make the music suit someone’s voice and style. Gabrielle is a great writer and I loved watching how quick she wrote, Trio Da Kali have some very interesting melodies within their music and I found working across something so complex to be a real learning curve for me.
Much of your music is the perfect blend of electronic and pop sounds. What draws you to those genres?
I’m more drawn to the electronic sound so I’m not really sure how my music ended up with so many pop elements to it. I like some pop music and sounds, but I’m very much more into emotive electronic music. I love psychedelic music, Pink Floyd and stuﬀ like that. I love hip-hop and Kayne West. So I do love a good pop song but I’m not someone that is listening to a lot of it. I’m not really sure how it ended up in my music… I guess it’s a subconscious thing. I do try to write to appeal to as many people as possible so perhaps it’s come out of that.
- Dress 5senses
Between your visuals, social media presence, and discography, you radiate such strong positive energy. What’s the key to finding happiness and peace?
I am positive for other people. I enjoy seeing and making people happy and I like people to keep their heads up. It’s more because I am actually suffering from a lot of depression and anxiety so I know how it feels to be in dark places or to struggle. I don’t come from the best background either, so I think that it’s me trying to make sure no one feels the way that I do a lot of the time, and trying to be someone who contributes to making people feel better. I don’t have a key to any happiness or peace, I don’t think I’ve found that myself, but I hope I do at some point and I hope I can influence or help someone else find that too.
If a new listener recently came across your music, what’s one song of yours they should listen to in order to fall in love with you as an artist?
You’ve had massive growth over the last few years. What are your goals for 2022 and beyond?
To release my album and tour live with a live band. I’d really love to get out there and play music in a live setting. I’d just like to keep making music, sharing it, and meeting new people along the way.
TSHA plays for Field Day at Victoria Park on Sunday 29th August. Buy tickets here.