It’s always been the same story for as long as I can remember!
Throughout my career, I’ve been approached by A&R who have seen me sing at gigs, and they all had the same thing to say about me: "great, unusual voice, but what on earth are we gonna do with it?!"
Their reasoning behind this is that my voice is definitely not the kind of thing you hear on mainstream radio, that is, it’s not a ‘pop voice', for want of a better word.
In their eyes, the kinds of voices that ‘sell’ are the lighter female voices... and mine definitely doesn’t fit into that category!
So what does this mean for me?
Well, it has meant that I’ve constantly come up against a brick wall within the industry due to my not fitting their boxes. I could easily alter the way I sing and be more ‘pop-friendly', but it’s not really me and I wouldn’t feel happy within myself doing that.
If I sound different, it’s because I am different; we are all different, all different shades. It just so happens that my tonality is not one that fits the pop world so easily, according to the record companies.
The one thing I’ve always felt strongly about is that I want to make music that matches who I am and reflects the kind of music that I love. I don’t want to be a carbon copy of anyone, not even the artists that inspire me. And I certainly don’t want to be pigeon-holed into a genre.
I think we are lucky to live in a time where we can create music from home and not be restricted by the requirements of a label. Don’t get me wrong, if a major label came along and wanted to invest in me as an artist, I certainly wouldn’t brush it off, but like I said, I don’t fit their box!
There have been many times when I’ve applied for vocal session work and the answer is always something like, "your voice is too deep". This always irritated me because, in actual fact, I have a soprano voice! I just know how to use different palettes in order to achieve different vocal textures when I sing.
My new single Catch-22 was inspired by classic blues music and I wanted a retro vibe, while still, of course, being able to match up to modern day production. And I’ve been surprised by the amazing response I’ve had internationally from people on social media; they actually understand where I’m coming from!
It’s so refreshing to see that there are people out there that want to hear my kind of voice and my kind of music.
The message I would give to artists who are just starting out is to just be yourself; it won’t work if you try to be anything other than the artist that you are. And ultimately, you’ll feel happier making the music that you want to make.
If you only have one person on some far away island who appreciates your music, it’s still a true connection with a true fan. And that’s the real goal of creating music.
Believe in yourself and your vision and others will too.
Nathalie Miranda's new single Catch-22 is out now.