DURBAN - Kelly Clarkson and John Legend are just two of the artists up-and-coming Chatsworth-born pop musician Jessica Chaz would love to work with.
Considering her drive, it won't take long to realise that dream. Not prepared to wait to get work or opportunity, she and her sister, Vanessa Moodley, 31, established their own music label, Moodlab.
Chaz, 28, who grew up in Durban, has just released her single, Answer, from her debut EP titled Dreamin’, which will be released in May.
Now living in Vancouver, Canada, where her family emigrated in 2012, Chaz this week told The Independent on Saturday :
“I would love to collaborate with Kelly Clarkson because she inspires me vocally and I admire the way she carries herself as an artist, never compromising on who she is for anything.
Chaz, who attended Parkside Primary School, Durban Girls’ High School and later UKZN, said: “The EP has seven tracks on it and was co-produced by Vanessa.
“From conception to execution, it has taken us three years – including writing the songs, arranging, hiring musicians, producing, mixing, mastering and promoting,” she said.
Chaz described making the EP as a worthwhile experience.
“The highs of this experience are finally getting the music out there and the overwhelmingly positive response we have received. The experience of producing and having a say, or the final say, on every part of the project has also been such a high, extremely stressful. But now at the end, it's like: 'Wow, we created that!' ”
Chaz said Answer was recorded in studios in Durban and Vancouver, and working with musicians and engineers across the globe made the process a lot trickier.
“But it was part of the process of creating something we are so proud of and we were able to capture exactly what we wanted,” she said.
Chaz said she was planning a tour and remixes of tracks on the EP.
“In the latter part of this year, Vanessa will be dropping another album. We are also hoping to sign another artist to our label early next year and start educational initiatives to help younger female artists develop, in confidence and skill."
Chaz encouraged other up-and-coming musicians still waiting to be signed by a record label to not lose hope and to surround themselves with supportive, like-minded people.
“In your career, you will hear many nos and many opinions – but if you believe in yourself, know who you are and hold on to hope, it makes the journey a little less painful,” she said.
THE INDEPENDENT ON SATURDAY