"I see myself creating a new path for afro artists like myself and breaking the mold. Artists like Sampa The Great, Genesis Owusu and Tkay Maidza continue to inspire me."
Adrian Dzvuke has tapped the one and only Beckah Amani for his newest single NOBODY ELSE.
Dzvuke is beyond one to watch in Perth's music scene, helping put the city on the map as one of Australia's finest spaces for new revolutionary music. He is a cultural move-maker amongst the Australian music scene and is seen as a pioneer of afro-pop and its journey towards millions of ears across Australia and the world.
NOBODY ELSE reflects this perfectly, utilising an Afro Beats percussion line with soul-oozing chords, guitar licks and gorgeously layered vocals. As the track hits its post-chorus, brass sections combine beautifully with the beat. Both of the artists' vocal performances match the energy of the beat, with both elements moulding to create an unstoppable, blissful dance number.
To get to know the track better, we had Amani and Dzvuke chat the future of Afro Pop in Australia, breaking boundaries, creative honesty and the inspiration behind their work.
Beckah Amani: How did you first get into music?
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Adrian Dzvuke: I was raised in a Christian household where my father would always play a lot of gospel music and was very involved in the church band, so naturally I would tag along to the band rehearsals. One day I found myself playing drums when the drummer couldn't make it. I definitely did not have the technical ability but I realized I had the natural rhythm and really enjoyed it. Fast forward a couple years later I had taught myself how to play keys and eventually ventured into making my own beats then later started writing my own songs.
You’re an incredible songwriter. I’m interested to hear about your creative process when writing?
Beckah: The initial melodic ideas for a song usually begin on a piano and further teased out on guitar. When I’ve created a palette that I like I then sit with the pieces I have for quite a while and go down as many avenues as I can finding the right structure and flow for the song. I then spend time refining the song until I feel the song is complete and I know the direction for production.
I loved your last project. What was your inspiration behind it?
Adrian: I'm glad that Phone Me When You Lonely resonated the way it did because I was definitely nervous putting it out. I really just wanted to experiment with different sounds I was inspired by at that time which I think is very important to do as an artist, especially when starting out. I am so excited about the new music though.
Beckah: What challenges have you faced in your music career, and how have you overcome them?
Adrian: I think being different can feel like it works against you sometimes, especially in a market where there's a specific sound that is usually celebrated. I think by staying true to myself I have created a unique space for myself and hopefully for others in the scene and it's what keeps me going. I want to make a big impact and be part of pioneering a new sound.
It was so incredible to work on Nobody Else with you, you really elevated the track and understood the assignment. Have you collaborated with other artists?
Beckah: I was introduced to your music in 2020 during the pandemic and have been obsessed ever since. I’m quite excited that my first Aussie collab is with someone I admire. My only other collaboration has been with a Canadian artist, but I’ve enjoyed the process of working on this track more. Mainly because we were friends prior to working on the track and Nobody Else is just so energetic and fun.
Your music has seemed to evolve since the past project. Where do you see yourself going forward within the music industry?
Adrian: I think I have found my voice and feel so much more comfortable with breaking the rules and doing things my own way. I see myself creating a new path for afro artists like myself and breaking the mold. Artists like Sampa The Great, Genesis Owusu and Tkay Maidza continue to inspire me.
I caught your live set at BIGSOUND and it was inspiring too. How do you prepare for a show and what do you want your audience to feel when they leave the venue?
Beckah: I would describe my show as an afro infused soulful set. During the show I want my audience to have fun, feel deeply and walk away from the show feeling that they were connected to the music and the people around them. Preparing for a show for me looks like drinking lots of ginger and peppermint tea, band rehearsal and listening to Kendrick Lamar.
Lastly, what is your message to aspiring Afro-Pop artists in Australia, and how would you like to see the genre grow in the future?
Adrian: My message would be to keep representing the culture and spread love through our music. I would like to see the genre getting to mainstream level.