Interview: Introducing Moli, your new favourite popstar
Image: Danny Jungslund
Nineteen year old Belgian singer-songwriter Moli is emerging as one of the most exciting new acts of this year. Born in Belgium to British parents and now living in Berlin, she released her first single ‘Didn’t Mean To’ in June, an uber-cool, laid back jam that vibes on a variety of genres including soul, jazz, urban, electro and pop. She carried this gorgeously unique style over to her her debut EP Résumé, released in November and is definitely one to to watch in 2019. We recently caught up with Moli to find out more about her career, her music and her plans for the future.
Hi Moli! Thanks for chatting to us, How’s things?
Everything is great! I am living my dream, writing songs everyday, developing my artist project. I get to travel whilst going on writing trips which is really fun! And one of the things I love the most is constantly meeting new people that share my passion.
When did you first get into music?
My dad is a big music lover so we would always listen to music in the car together. I’m very grateful for this as it gave me very diverse music tastes - Toto, The Police, David Gray and many others but it’s quite a blur!
I played the violin from a very young age for about 10 years. I really enjoyed it and learnt so much from it until it started to get too serious and I realised that what I really wanted to focus on was singing.
Was there a moment when you consciously decided to make music a career?
Well it is a scary career choice so I first decided to take a gap year after school to give it a go. I moved to Berlin and fell in love with making music every day. I just couldn’t stop.
After you made that decision, how did you go about making it happen?
I started to sing at a very young age and it would be a hobby of mine to upload covers on SoundCloud. I then began writing my own first songs. But it was only after having the opportunity to do my first sessions with professional producers and writers that I realised this could become a reality for me. I met so many amazing people and musicians during this period and learnt a lot from them. It took some time before I found my own sound and style - I needed to develop as an artist and grow. When it finally happened, it was pretty clear, that becoming an artist and songwriter was the only thing I wanted to do.
Congratulations on your debut EP Résumé it is fantastic! What was the inspiration behind it and was there a particular message you wanted to put out with it?
Thank you very much! I was inspired by my life experiences really. I just wrote what felt right at that time, what I had on my chest and I hope that people can relate to it. To me songwriting is all about sharing your feelings and communicating these with others.
There is a melancholy in some of the lyrics, particularly in ‘The Point in Loving You’ – do the songs come from a sad place?
Yes - at least most of them do. I try and take these nostalgic sad feelings and make them into something good. I always joke about it with my songwriter friends. When one of us is going through some tough times we comfort each other by saying “Well at least you can write a song about it”! I use songwriting as a sort of therapy.
What was the recording process like?
I got together with the producer of my EP in the summer of 2017 for a session and we wrote ‘Comfortable’. From that day onwards, I knew that we were onto something so we got back into the studio during the autumn and winter of 2017. We spent a couple of weeks just writing a lot of songs. After that, we went through them and selected the best ones and we then worked more in detail on them. It all felt like a very enjoyable and natural process.
Are there are particular artists that inspire you, or influence your sound?
Yes! While writing Résumé I was listening to a lot of NAO, Mura Masa, Kaytranada, The Internet, Jorja Smith.
You are originally from Belgium, a country we don’t hear a lot from on the international music scene. What Belgian artists should we be listening to right now?
I would recommend you listen to Angèle, Stromae, Damso, Romeo Elvis.
There is currently a lot of debate about gender equality in the music industry. Do you think we have a problem with sexism, both from within the industry and how the general public perceive female artists?
Yes, definitely and you can tell by stating simple facts. In the UK for instance, only 6% of producers and 16% of songwriters are women. On a positive note, I do believe that changes are being made and that we are slowly going in the right direction.
What’s up next for Moli?
I’m currently in the writing process for my next EP which I am really excited about! New music and visuals will be coming very soon!