Orca Opens Up About His Music And Artistic Career In New Interview
This is one of the best interviews I’ve ever done! The story of Orca is inspiring and serves as a good example that anything with discipline can be achieved. Despite his visual impairment, he’s determined to provide listeners with top-notch music. Scroll down to learn more about him.
1 – Your journey towards becoming a singer-songwriter is pretty inspiring. Please tell us more about it?
It all started when I was three years old; since my mother tongue is Arabic, I was always fascinated with English music. My parents used to bring different cassettes and mashups of different genres. I didn’t understand what they were saying or who the singers were, but English music always brought comfort and happiness no matter what.
As I grew older, my dad started buying me piano keyboards, the toy version of a piano, and let me play with I even have an old photo from those times. Sometimes my grampa would hand me a mic and allow me to sing along with the songs I loved. My family used to surround me cheer me on while I was singing. I even tried to trace some of those songs.
Still, I couldn’t find all of them like for example, from the songs I could find AQUA’s “Candyman,” “Roses Are Red,” “Doctor Jones,” “My Oh My,” and “Calling For You,” and also I managed to find Shaggy’s album such as ‘Angel,’ and ‘Hot Shot.’
I also used to listen to Westlife, Five, The Backstreet Boys among other artists I couldn’t hunt down all of them, but I managed to find a few.
All was fun and good until I reached middle school. When I decided to start focusing on music and improve my vocal abilities, my family stood against it and considered music a hobby that was not to be pursued. “If you have extra time, then sing but don’t create free time for it.” I should focus on academic achievements and the fact that the kind of music I listen to isn’t accepted where I live. There was also the fact that what will benefit me in life is my education and not my passion for music, and since I’m visually impaired, they considered that I only have a one-way path in life that should cross without looking to either left or right… Yet the dream kept bottling inside, and I kept listening to English music, ignoring any other kinds of music as I grew up.
I did not recognize most Arab artists and only knew those in English. I couldn’t mix with other people because our musical interests and references differed. I didn’t build any kind of audience or connect with my generation. I kept this on as I grew listening and learning while also improving my listening abilities to understand more about the song’s structure and how everything ticks.
But whenever I tried to discuss any type of training with the family, the answer was always no, so I kept self-training until I couldn’t take it anymore all those ideas and scenarios that I needed to share in a song all those stories that I wish to tell and share with others it was eating me inside until I couldn’t take anymore, and I decided to start my journey no matter what, and on January 2021 my first release came out, and I knew that to reach my dream I need an audience a fan base a movement to support me and cheer me on because I cannot do anything alone I have so many limitations when it comes to my disability, but I’m not planning to give up, and I will keep on pushing until someday people can support me and get the message that each of my singles has within its lyrics and its own structure because it isn’t always about the story but on how its told.
2 – Being visually impaired has allowed you to develop higher sensibility in other senses?
That is absolutely true. When God takes away something from a person, he blesses him with something else in return. Throughout my life, I developed a heightened sense of hearing, smell, taste, touch, the sixth sense in a way, So when it comes to my sense of hearing, I consider it to be a blessing and a curse because now I can hear things that are far far away. I’m also able to hear when people whisper to each other when people have phone calls. I can listen to what’s going on the other end and also what other people do in their home if they were close to me, so my solution for this was buying a noise-canceling headset and walking almost every day while wearing it so if people need me they’ll have to call or text to get my attention.
I was also able to develop a heightened sense of direction, so instead of looking for the direction of where a car is coming, for example, I rely on the air around me along with the sound that the vehicle makes, which allows me to walk or move to the opposite direction this ability helped me a lot in my soccer days in which it allowed to evade my opponents and be able to avoid them and also tell where the goalkeeper or the team’s defensive line are standing either from the air around the sound of their breath or the smell of their cologne or body In this world every person has a unique smell think of it as a fingerprint but for blind or visually-impaired people so that we can recognize you when approaching us.
I recognize people via their voice because my remaining sight doesn’t allow me to identify facial details such as facial structure, eye color, etc. when navigating or moving around if it’s a similar area, I rely on my photographic memory of the place so if changes were to occur in that area such as the moving of furniture the chances of me bumping into them are high and when I’m outside of the house I rely on my Kane.
I also consider myself to be a technology nerd. I’m always looking for hardware and software to make my life easier when using what’s left of my sight. For example, when recording and mixing, I use zooming software that makes everything look bigger; of course, it has some drawbacks, but I’m always for the look for new things that’ll help me keep on pushing and release more music
3 – Where did the artistic name Orca come from?
The name Orca was given to me by my teammates and friends thanks to my unique and aggressive playstyle. When playing the sports of basketball and soccer, indeed, I’m visually impaired. Still, I was always able to evade my opponents and score with unbelievable accuracy despite not seeing a thing. Hence, one day they started talking about how I hone onto my target like a dolphin and how I possess an echo-location-like ability. Then they considered the dolphin to be a gentle creature that didn’t fit my playstyle. Hence, they agreed on why we call you Orca instead. Since you possess the abilities and traits of an orca, then I said OK. So there you have back then; they mentioned that an orca has poor sight, but it turned out that this piece of information wasn’t true, so how about I become the first Orca that I visually-impaired it’ll make become even more unique.
4 – Does anyone in your family play a musical instrument or sing?
As far as singing, I’m the only one, but when it comes to instrument playing, I learned piano for a short while and didn’t finish. Still, a relative of mine is a pianist. She teaches piano lessons to those who want to learn another relative plays the violin, so basically, I have a relative who can play different instruments.
5 – How many songs have you released so far? Which one is your favorite?
This is tricky; currently, I have eight releases and have two on standby. You see, I’m struggling financially, and I record two songs per month. Still, I’m only able to release one of them due to my very limited budget. My biggest wish is to gain the support of those who listen to and fall in love with my music so that they can help me release more music and reach higher levels of connectedness with my fans, but as things stand, I only can get one song out there.
The other one will have to wait until the next month, so my message to all of you is to help me and lend me your support, allow me to share my passion with you, and release more unique pieces of music for you.
As for which one of my releases is my favorite, I can’t answer that because everyone has their own atmosphere and a fantastic story to tell. If they were the same, I might have chosen a favorite; even if the style may sound the same at first, each song will sound different in its own way of telling its story, and in my case, I don’t only focus on the music itself I also love to spill my stories into the artwork of each single leaving clues in every detail my goal is to take the listener on a journey where they can enjoy listening and figuring out the message behind each single so that my single can help them relate and connect with their inner feelings.
So, the answer is I’m in love with everything that I create because I always put 400% into every release that I make.
6 – What drove you to drop your new single, “Good 4 You”?
I was driven by the need to let my overactive imagination run free. The basic concept of “Good 4 You” can take different routes and shapes depending on the person you ask. In my case, I connected it to myself and whether I could land the woman of my dreams.
I traveled back in time and remembered the moments when I saw my now wife and the mother of my four children and how I was hesitant at first. I was reminded of how often I did ask myself this exact question.
Still, then I decided why don’t create a single that tells a unique story that its main focus is love, romance, and getting what you dreamt about in the end, and that’s when it hit me from the lyrics to the arrangement and the artwork all combined tells a happy story and creates the answer to this one simple but significant and endless question.
Always believe in yourself and the power of love, romance, and your ability to pursue and think in them. They’ll respond in kind by lending you their power, allowing you to reach the finish line.
7 – To whom would you dedicate this new song?
I’m dedicating this song to my beloved wife, the core of my inspiration and bottomless love. I also dedicate this song to all those who need to listen to it and may relate to it to help them find what they seek, so to all those who believe in love, romance, and your own ability to attract those you love; this is for you.
8 – Which is your favorite place to write compositions? Why?
There is no particular place for writing because I might be inspired anywhere, then the lyrics related to that idea will start pouring in like raindrops. So the times where I sat down and put effort into writing are pretty rare, to be honest.
So when I first started writing, I began as a poet. So whenever I think of a specific feeling, the ideas come to me in droves, then I start writing.
It’s like I become possessed, then my fingers start moving on their own, and when I stop writing, I realize that a masterpiece was created. It might sound weird, but this is what happens. It all comes out of thin air, and then boom, a song is born.
9 – Is your next single another love song?
The answer is no. As you may know, I promote myself as a visually impaired artist/songwriter who creates music that includes 400% love, 400% romance, and 200% of all that is between now.
Usually, I don’t do this, but I’m willing to share the upcoming releases my fans should expect. I’m only sharing the order, but no release dates as they’re a surprise. My upcoming single will be called “Situations.” The next in line is “Sister” and then back to the love and romance with the single “Dreamy.”
I’m always ready to create more music, so lend your support and strength so that I keep on making,
10 – Finally, what advice would you like to share with other indie artists?
I’ve got a lot of advice to offer but let us focus on the main take on things: to all indie artists out there, don’t give up and keep on pushing; this is a long road with many twists and turns.
Be careful of who you trust and who you send your music to. Scammers are all over the place, and they can mess you and your music in a heartbeat, so make sure to deal with only authentic promotional agencies and not anyone who’s offering you a cheaper, easy promo.
Don’t get discouraged if a single doesn’t turn out the way you imagined it would; instead, keep moving forward focus on the feedback you receive. If it’s valuable, take it to heart.
If it’s only hate to give it, a second glance keep improving until you reach the desired level and good luck to you and always remember my philosophy when it comes to music “Always inspire and get inspired because music can fix what words alone cannot.”
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Exclusive Interview: VE/RA Discusses Techno Hit “Love & Peace”
I had the opportunity to have a one-on-one conversation with VE/RA, an up-and-coming Techno musician, to talk about her recent popular single, “Love & Peace” in collaboration with The Rocketman. During the interview, she talks about the process of creating her unique and powerful sound, juggling her music career alongside other responsibilities, her aspirations as an artist in the long run, and various other topics.
1 — How did the idea of mixing elements of Rap and Techno come about in your new track “Love & Peace”?
The Rocketman and I, both being Techno artists, decided to create a track in our genre. However, we wanted to make it unique and distinct. Upon discovering a Rap vocal, we immediately started building music around it.
2 — What was your reaction to receiving support from industry heavyweights like Charlotte De Witte, Nicky Romero, and Maddix?
After finishing the track, we sent it to Charlotte de Witte. Over the weekend, while scrolling through my Instagram stories, I came across a post where she was playing “Love & Peace.” Overwhelmed with excitement, I immediately called The Rocketman. Getting support from Charlotte de Witte is a huge deal within the Techno scene. Soon after, Maddix also supported us multiple times, which was great since I’ve always enjoyed his productions. A little while later, I received a video of Nicky Romero playing our track on the main stage at EDC Mexico. It was surreal to see the huge audience react so positively to our track. In short, it was a very cool experience!
3 — Did you face any challenges in achieving the hard-hitting sound?
No, not really. The track was there within 5 hours. After finding the vocals, a hard-hitting kick, psy bass, acid line, and trance synth were built around it. The result was not overly complicated, as simplicity was key.
4 — What do you think sets “Love & Peace” apart from other Techno tracks?
“Love & Peace” is a highly accessible Techno track that appeals to a wide audience. While Nicky Romero and Avao are not necessarily Techno artists, they still play the genre. Additionally, the Rap vocal adds a unique touch to the whole sound.
5 — Can you share any details about your upcoming collaborations in 2023?
No, unfortunately, I can’t say anything about that this time.
6 — How do you balance your music production career with other commitments?
I still live at home with my parents, so my expenses are not that high. I do this on purpose, to put my full focus on my music career.
7 — What’s the most unforgettable experience you’ve had while performing on stage?
That was when I was playing at Dutchweek in Saalbach, Austria, on top of the mountain. My sister, father, and his girlfriend were with me. After finishing my performance, my father stood with tears in his eyes and said, “I’m so proud.” My sister also wrote me a message expressing her pride. The warmth and positive energy from both my family and fans always stay with me the longest.
8 — How has your music evolved since you first started producing?
I made a lot of strides in the field of producing. I took private lessons producing in Den Bosch, and took a lot of online courses, including those from Alex Stein, ANNA & Wehbba, Amazingblaze, and UMEK. I also took a course at the Herman Brood Academy and learned a lot from other producers.
9 — What are your long-term goals as an artist, and where do you see yourself in the future?
I would love to set up my own label and event. Besides that, I would love to travel the world and share my music with as many people as possible. There are too many events to list where I would love to play, but one of my biggest dreams is Tomorrowland, Awakenings, Ultra, Time Warp, EDC, and Soundstorm.
10 — Finally, is there something else you would like to share with your fans?
I want to thank my fans very much for all the support I have received. I get so much positive energy from them all the time. You can expect new tracks from me this year and I will be debuting at a lot of cool events. Keep an eye on my socials and hopefully, I will see you soon!
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Unpacking The Meaning: T@NE Talks His New “Autumn” Remix
T@NE is a multi-talented artist who wears many hats – musician, saxophonist, composer, producer, rapper, vocalist, and director. His recent collaboration with Dronez resulted in an epic remix of a new track called “Autumn.”
In this interview, he shares his inspiration for the remix, how the collaboration with Dronez came about, what sets this remix apart from the original version, and much more…
1 — What inspired the decision to remix “Autumn”?
I felt the composition really lends itself to being remixed. I mean you can remix anything, so yeah it’s great to hear what someone else can do with the work. And, it’s a great way to collaborate with people and build each other’s brands.
2 — How did the collaboration with Dronez come about?
I was studying (and still studying) the genre Future Riddim and I was listening to a track Dronez released called “Quest;” I was thinking to myself, man Dronez is gonna rock a remix of “Autumn.” We should work together, let’s collaborate.
3 — What sets this remix apart from the original version?
One of the main things was to give Dronez the freedom to do whatever he wanted with the track. When discussing what to do, I said to Dronez, “go in and do your thing” and yeah he demolished it; Dronez absolutely rocked it.
4 — What kind of emotions do you hope to evoke in listeners through this remix?
You know, the beautiful thing about putting out work is that everybody can get something different out of it.
For me, it’s hey, just keep believing in yourself, keep believing in your dreams, and put in the hard work. If there’s one thing that I’ve learned from my experiences it’s that not only do you have to be the hardest worker and smartest worker in the room, but you also have to be up working before everybody else. I try to set my alarm for 3:30 am/4:00 am because those extra hours of correct practice really add up in helping you to be prepared for when opportunities arise.
Whatever it is you do, your career, romantic relationships, or friendships, it’s about really trying to bring your A-game all the time, and that comes in the preparation and putting in the hard work. So yeah, keep working and always try and be a better version of yourself.
But, like I said what people get from our work, I really believe depends on the individual.
5 — How did you go about selecting the beats and harmonies for “Autumn”?
For the original, I had been talking to my friend Be Steadwell about working on a song together, so I went to her place and we pretty much wrote the whole composition and lyrics in like three days, I remember working on a few chords when I got back to my place.
And for the remix, I sent Dronez some stems from the original; the vocals stems, guitar stems, keyboard stems and some synth and pad stems. Stems are exports of the individual tracks out of a DAW (Digital Audio Workstation), that you can then import into your production/mixing session in another (same or different companies) DAW.
The vocals already had production on them (i.e. EQ, Compression, Reverb, Delay, Etc.) by my guy Johannes Raassina, and then Dronez added more of his own production to the vocals.
So yeah, once Dronez had the stems from the original, he used some of what Be and I composed, and then he came up with his own incredible composition.
6 — Can you elaborate on the concept that the lyrics convey?
Be Steadwell wrote the lyrics, I just remember her composing all these lyrics on the spot, I was thinking to myself this is incredible.
7 — The artwork looks very striking! What was the idea behind it?
Thank you, yeah the album artwork is by my guy Fishman Art 89, he’s amazing. Fishman has done a lot of our album covers, I love working with him.
This artwork is a variation of the original. The lady on the cover isn’t anyone in particular, that was just my idea that I had for the cover; usually, when I think of a song there’s also a visual that comes into my head that goes along with it. So I’ll sketch out the concept and send it to Fishman, then Fishman will send me a few of his sketches, and we’ll pick one and take it from there. But yeah, I really just let Fishman go in and do his thing.
8 — Do you have any plans for future collaborations?
I would love to collaborate with Dronez again, and whoever is down to collaborate. I love collaborating with people whether it’s for an original, remix, or anything else.
9 — Are you already working on your next release?
Yeah working on more music projects with my bandmates, and also working on my Nightwing script. I really believe I’m the guy to play Nightwing and direct the film. It’s coming along great, at the moment I have around 106 pages of script. I’m not gonna say too much about the script at the moment but I will say Batman/Bruce Wayne is in the screenplay and I’m writing those parts with Ben Affleck in mind. So yeah just working on that.
10 — How do you see your artistry evolving over the next 10 years?
Just taking it one day at a time, trying to make sure I put the correct hard work in and keep moving forward.
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A Look Inside Moon And Aries’ ‘Break The Matrix (Episode Three)’
Jordana Moon, who is a member of the musical duo Moon And Aries, talks about the new EP ‘Break The Matrix (Episode Three).’ This material draws inspiration from the idea of breaking away from the old world and building a new, healthier paradigm. Learn more via this exclusive interview.
1 — What was the inspiration behind the concept for your new EP, ‘Break the Matrix (Episode Three)’?
Hello! This is Jordana Moon speaking with you today. Thanks so much for your time and inquiry about our latest “Moon And Aries: Break The Matrix Episode 3”
That’s definitely a loaded question that leans into a loaded answer, but I’ll do my best to give the cliff notes. Tom (Aries ) and I have a deep fascination with how reality works in this realm or matrix. Concepts of laws of physics, the law of attraction, laws of nature… things like that. Exploring the illusion, the limitations, the potentials, the infinite perspectives of truth …the ultimate truth. Why we are here? Who are we now and where are we going. These are the questions we explore in the full trilogy of “Break The Matrix”. Basically, challenging and breaking free from the old World to help create a new, healthier, paradigm.
2 — How would you describe the creative process of this project?
Tom and I talk about the concept of each song for a few months before Tom begins his initial ideas for the composition. We flush out the idea, see how it’s resonating through our lives, and then Tom captures the essence of our thoughts and feelings and puts them into his incredible compositions. So, we talk about each song individually and explore the concept of the album in full, simultaneously. We sort of live the concepts during the making of each song. Then I write the lyrics once the composition is near to complete, and it unfolds from there.
3 — What was your favorite song to work on from the EP and why?
Illumination Society. Tom and I love this concept a lot. It’s like, the whole trilogy leads up to this song. It’s a song about winning! The instrumental is so dynamic and I loved writing the lyrics in sort of a rap song type of way! This song has become our calling card.
4 — Is there a formula to create such futuristic sounds?
Yes and no. I feel like if you are in a state of creative channeling, almost like meditation, you’ll become a very clear channel of what the World possibly needs to hear. Indie music has the potential to be at the very tip of the music industry because we don’t need to play by the same trending rules. So, we have creative freedom. But from the conception of a song to its release, is usually a 9-month period for us. So, we need to always be hanging in the future and bringing that into the now in order to be at the forefront of the industry. Like the musical Marty McFly!
But, on the flip side, we are just doing what comes naturally to us. Some people think our sound is very nostalgic! Some think it’s current. Some think it’s futuristic because of the Sci-Fi type of concept. Tom and I are just acting on impulse and intuition. Creating the music, we want to hear.
5 — Did you face any challenges while working on this material?
This project was actually pretty smooth. We just had finished writing a 9-song album and a 5-song EP and we worked out a lot of kinks with those songs. Sometimes my lyrics are not in full alignment with my emotions if that makes sense. So, I have to get all of me to surrender to the song so that my vocal performance is on par with Tom’s instrumentals and my lyrics. My voice has to really sell the song. And I’m not going to lie, sometimes it takes me 8 to 10hrs to record a song, especially if I need to transmit a deep level of vulnerability.
6 — How does ‘Break the Matrix (Episode Three)’ differ from your previous works?
It’s definitely the episode with the most energetic songs. All dance floor vibes, a little more playful, a little more fun.
7 — What is your message to your listeners with your latest release?
Honestly, we just try to create music that activates and puts people into a higher state as they listen. If you feel better during and after, that means the most to us. If you’ve had a few existential moments, even better 🙏🙌
8 — Can you talk about the music video for your recent single “From Another Dimension”?
The music video was created by our friend Lissete Real from Ecuador. She’s actually made around 10 of our videos, I believe. We love animation and simple videos that don’t overcomplicate the song’s meaning. This video highlights a lone astronaut who is both on land and in water. Now, it doesn’t exactly go into which planet he’s on, but water is consciousness and rebirth… so he’s on his existential journey of self-discovery, no matter which dimension he’s in. There are infinite versions of ourselves, and you could say there is a version of ourselves “watching and waiting” as we look upon the version of ourselves that is exploring and discovering.
9 — As a duo, how has your collaboration evolved throughout the years?
Tom and I have now known each other for 3 years! But have still not met in person! We are 9 hrs apart lol We will be meeting in person soon tho. And as we get to know each other better, our music becomes more cohesive. Even tho we clicked right off the bat, like anything, you grow and evolve and naturally get better if that’s what you desire. So now when we go to work on a song, our vision, and our truth is much more aligned.
10 — What can we expect from Moon And Aries in the upcoming months?
We will be re-releasing all 3 episodes as one full concept album. That will happen very soon! And after that, more music, and new concepts. We’ve got a lot we are working on right now. And we also have big plans (currently a secret) but that also revolve around meeting in person and performing live on stage together. So, stay tuned for those updates!! Thanks so much for chatting, it’s been a pleasure.