RGM INTRODUCING – WE INTERVIEW NEW YORK ARTIST BELZ
Hiya folks thanks for joining us in the virtual RGM lounge today, grab a brew and take a seat.
What made you decide to start the band / become a soloist?
Ever since I was little, I have always loved music. I started to sing when I was about five years old, and thought it was something everyone could do. It wasn’t until my music teacher in elementary school told me I had a true talent that I started to take it seriously. I started to write my own music and play out at local venues, and there was nothing like that feeling. I knew I had to do it forever! Therefore, I became Belz.
Introduce us to you and your musical history?
I am from Boston, Massachusetts, and have always loved music. Growing up watching The Voice and different musical shows on Nickelodeon and the Disney Channel, I assumed singing was something everyone could do. I signed myself for voice, piano, and guitar lessons at Onset School of Music in Wakefield, Massachusetts where I studied under various Berklee Alumni, primarily Loren Benn for voice, Jiri Nedoma for piano, and Nate Leavitt for guitar. I studied classical and jazz piano, which gave me a deep understanding of musical theory. Because I learned that, I felt I could play and write almost anything. One week after my first piano lesson, I played my first gig at a town fair, and ever since, I continued to play out locally and write my own music! These past two years, I finally began to release my music.
What’s one question you’re sick of being asked when interviewed?
One question I am sick of being asked when interviewed… that is hard!! I really do appreciate any question anyone has about me or my music and love that people want to know. If there is anything, I would say it questions about my personal life like relationships or family!
Do you sign up to any conspiracy theories?
I definitely would say that I don’t believe in too many conspiracy theories, however, something that I really do believe in is the afterlife and the paranormal. I do believe that there are ghosts wandering about our lives, both good and bad! I also believe dogs can see or sense them.
Did you buy anything you don’t need in the pandemic?
Yes! I bought too many new clothes online to go out, when really I couldn’t go anywhere because of the pandemic! I have a bad habit of not being able to stop myself from shopping for new clothes.
What useless party trick do you have?
I can talk exactly like Gru from Despicable me…if you read that no you didn’t.
What was the most fun you have had on stage?
The most fun I have ever had on stage was when I wasperforming at the Hard Rock Café in Boston in a competition, and I was performing a jazz piece I had learned along with a pop song by one of my favorite artists. I was playing the piano and singing, and I completely let go. I felt the freest I had ever felt and the most myself. I came in first place at the competition, and will never forget that feeling.
What was the worst experience on stage?
There was one time when I was really sick, and I couldn’t cancel my performance. Therefore I had to perform sick, and during my last song, my voice cracked during a big note! I was so embarrassed!! Don’t perform sick!
Tell us something about you that you think people would be surprised about?
People might be surprised to know that I am the biggest Michael Jackson fan there is! I have read over seven books about him and know just about everything! #Moonwalkers. Also, I am a mega theater nerd! I would love to be on Broadway one day.
If you had to describe your band/music to an alien how would you describe it?
I like to make fun and feel good music that people can relate to with cool baselines and pop vibes. However, I also make really slow and touching music as well. I would say I have Ariana Grande, Dua Lipa, Demi Lovato, Bruno Mars, and Tori Kelly vibes.
What makes you stand out as a band/artist?
My music is honest to myself, and I think people here that and resonate with it for that reason. It is fun but at the same time, touches people. I like to make slower songs as well, but there must be a different element in them that makes them stand apart from the rest of the ballads out there.
Right now, what’s pissing you off the most?
I really would say I am such a happy person! When I am upset, I just put on Michael Jackson and vibe and the world instantly becomes a better place! I love to dance, and that can take me out of any angry mood.
What’s your favourite song to play live and why?
My favorite song to play live is “Creep” by Radiohead. I love this song because it is so authentic, heart-breaking, and moving, and I can always get into it. I find that others do too.
I hear you have a new single, what can you tell us about it?
I wrote “ARROGANT” alone last summer about that frustrating feeling when there is that arrogant person who thinks everything you say or do is about them, and I knew it was something anyone could relate to. I’ve heard a lot of sad slower songs this year, and wanted to write something with a lot of energy, funk, and pizzazz. I worked hands on with my producer in Boston on creating the track with a careful ear for cool baselines, beats, gang vocals, and more. It was an amazing process! I love using social media as a marketing platform for this song because I have found it is something that resonates with a lot of people. My goal was a fun and spunky pop song that would make people get up and dance! I hope it makes you do just that!
Talk me through the thought process of writing the single?
This song idea came to me after a boy thought one of my previous songs was about him, when I actually wrote the previous song before I even met him! I thought, “How arrogant is he! He thinks everything I say or do is about him!” and then came “ARROGANT”. I wanted to make it fun, sassy, spunky, and a dance song.
What was the recording process like?
I brought the song with its lyrics and chords to my amazing producer in Boston, and told him what I wanted it to sound like. I pulled up trumpet sounds I loved from different parts of Michael Jackson’s Off The Wall album that I wanted to include in “ARROGANT”. I also took Jackson 5 baseline type styles and baselines in some of Dua Lipa’s newest music and told my producer to slap the bass harder and make it disco-ey. I knew exactly what I wanted to hear and sat very hands on, telling my producer to add this, take out that, and more! It is a very hands on process.
What was the biggest learning curve in writing the single?
The biggest learning curve in writing the single was how to get ARROGANT to be spelled out in a manner that didn’t make it cheesy and loose its rhythm.
Would you change anything now it’s finished?
Definitely not! I am super happy about how it came out.
What are your plans for the year ahead? Is there anything else you would like to share with the world?
My plans for the year ahead are that I would love to release more music continuously and consistently. I will be releasing my next song sooner than you think!