16 October, 2019
You’ve probably heard Tanya’s gorgeous voice. If not at her favourite Bourke Street busking spot, then at the Nocturnal x Jazz at MIJF 2019.
We wanted to know what she loves about her life in music, how she got her start and what she listen to on a Friday night.
This mega-talented vocalist is about to release a new six-track EP, Normality, accompanied by four film clips. The first single, Writing Machine, is out 31 October. Find her on Instagram, Facebook and Youtube.
Tell us who you are and what you do?
My name is Tanya George, I'm a curly-haired vocal looper, singer, songwriter, musician and busker.
How long have you worked in music? How did you get started?
Professionally for 11 years, since I was 15 years old, wow can't believe how old I am! I started singing though when I was about five, in the Australian Girls Choir and then I begged my Mum (on my knees) for private lessons. She knew I was going to do it for the rest of my life. I started gigging at open mic's, busking, competitions and lied about my age at different bars pretending I was over 18 when I was a teenager so they would let me sing! Very cheeky. Then I started writing music and it kept moving from there.
What do you love about it?
Connection and creative expression. I LOVE meeting people who want to be a part of what you do together. I crave connection and I am never more myself than when I am on stage, that's me, exactly who I am from my heart and soul, I am more comfortable there than in real life! My favourite gigs are festivals and busking at the GPO spot on Bourke St.
What’s the weirdest part of your job?
No one having the same work schedule as me. Or when random people take photos of me in public and send them to me on Instagram – that can be pretty weird, especially when I'm eating something unsexy like a salad.
What are your desert island albums?
Nils Frahm (piano composer), Solo
Amy Winehouse, Back to Black
Foo Fighters, Best of You (first album I bought to be honest haha)
What’s your guilty pleasure album? Why do you love it?
Her voice gets me and the way it's produced – Ariana Grande's latest album haha Thank U, Next. She is very intriguing; I thought I didn't like her until I realised I was in love with her!
What’s your musical hot-tip?
Mojo Juju really captured my heart at BIGSOUND.
What/who was your first love in music? Why?
Diana Krall – the Look of Love. I could not sleep as a kid in primary school cause of my anxiety so my mum used to put on this so I would sleep.
Are you a jazz fan? If so, what’s your favourite jazz album/artist and why?
I am a jazz fan, thanks to my 83-year-old grandma. She used to sing Summertime (and still does) to me. I'm not gonna lie, I love ALL the typical standards: Billie, Ella, Louis, Frank, Herbie Hancock (who I recently met), Nat King Cole, Diana Krall, Jacob Collier!
What do you think makes for a great record collection?
Organisation, variety and pretty looking speakers near or on something that is wooden like a wooden chair! I wish I had my own work on vinyl, one day soon – I love it.
What’s one thing people may not know about vinyl?
Vinyl can be recyclable, it can be melted down and repurposed or you can reuse it as a placemat.
What are you playing on a Friday night? What are you playing on a Sunday morning?
Erykah Badu vibe on a Friday night with a Pinot Noir, please.
Frank Sinatra on a Sunday morning with a coffee.