Rising R&B singer-songwriter Aaliyah Esprit talks musical influences, individuality and her latest relationship inspired release ‘Hate to Be You’

Aaliyah Esprit

Originally from Nottingham, Aaliyah has since planted foundations in Manchester; splitting her time between both cities. After the success of an independent Soundcloud release of her very first EP ‘Exchanging Energies’ in 2018 Aaliyah was announced as a pupil of the highly sought-after Future Bubblers programme, which for her career opened up many doors.

What inspired you to begin a career in music?

Music has been the only constant in my life, the only certainty of what I wanted to do, I feel like my purpose is to create and connect. If I could live comfortable doing what I love for the rest of my life I’d be the happiest.

What differs you and your sound from other upcoming artists in the music industry?

I think what makes me different from other up and coming artists is the fact that I don’t limit myself to one genre, I place soulful on different beats to create sounds ever evolving but always the same signature soulful vocals that my listeners love.

Your latest release ‘Hate To Be You’ (Prod. HMD) is out now. Can you please describe the creative process and inspiration behind the track?

Working with HMD is always a dream, he’s a genius and a vocalist in his own right so he always knows how to sit my vocals on a track, and creatively we work great together, the inspiration was creating an anthem for women who finally found the strength to move on from someone toxic and to stand proud knowing he’d hate watching someone love you the way you were meant to be loved. As soon as I started writing the lyrics they started pouring out of me onto the page, it was honestly one of the easiest songs I’ve wrote I knew I had something with the hook like “hate to be you watching him love me” its catchy, its powerful and its relatable.

Everyone experiences good days and bad days, as an artist. When you have a bad day, what motivates you to keep moving and look ahead to the future?

Bad days can come in many forms it can be a song getting pulled from a project, it can be writers block making it impossible to progress, it can even be something totally non music related which seeps into your music and stops you being productive, for me personally when something starts to affect my music in anyway, I take a break, I do something else and come back to it, and I try to re-inspire myself, that can be working on a brand new track and getting excited about something new it can be changing my environment and fin ding some peace.

Bad times don’t last forever knowing there’s an end date to whatever I’m feeling at the time does help. I like to keep track of my goals also, that keeps me going as I always have something new to work towards, and when I achieve something in my list I feel like I’m progressing and that motivates me to keep looking to the future.

Aaliyah Esprit

In your own opinion, what is the most meaningful song you wrote? What makes you say that one?

In my opinion my most meaningful song is ‘Prisoner of My Mind’ I say this as it’s the first song where included my poetry, before then my poetry just sat on a Tumblr not really being shared with the world, but my poem ‘Blow Your Mind’ which is actually inspired by one of my favourite tracks’ ‘Mind Sex’ by dead prez’ has such pure content where I describe how exciting and sensual loving someone for their mind can be.

What personal advice would you give to someone wanting to pursue this career?

Find producers that you admire, don’t just work with someone because they own a studio and they offer cheap rates, don’t be afraid to make mistakes or make bad stuff, growth comes from practise, believe in your sauce, don’t compare yourself to other artists everyone’s on their own journey

‘Hate to Be You’ is available now via all major platforms.

Connect with Aaliyah Esprit

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