Made In Belgium 2017: Roselien

Pictures by Guillaume Kayacan

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October 8 marks the day that Lefto, Democrazy and Red Bull Elektropedia join forces for the fifth consecutive year, just to bring you the raw, new and undiscovered local talents in the electronic music scene our tiny country has to offer. Made In Belgium will shine a light on 9 young artists or bands that have the potential to make it big, each of them in their own particular way. In anticipation of the free event which will take place at NEST in Ghent, we have sent this year’s participants a couple of quick questions in order to see what we’re dealing with. Let's sit down with Roselien for this one. 

So tell the world: who is Roselien and what kind of music do you make?

"The sound of my music really depends on which emotion has to be expressed and the music I'm listening to at that moment in time. I live my life like everybody else: I face challenges, I get expectations and with that inevitably come disappointments. I see myself as an observer, rather than as a musician. It’s in my nature to closely observe everything that happens around me, which leaves a deep impression on me. As I take everything in, it comes out again in a different form. Music happens to be the medium that suits me best to express my observations and all the feelings that come with them."

Tell us about the first steps you made making music...

"I basically started making music of my own when I was 11. Started with the piano, which I found really easy: a bassline in the left hand and a melody in the right hand. I was really into instrumental music at the time, such as Wim Mertens and the soundtrack of the motion picture ‘Amélie Poulain’. I wasn't really singing at this time, yet. That soon changed, at the age of 12. I started writing lyric - full of grammar mistakes, of course - as I really wanted to express myself in English. I also accompanied myself on the classical guitar by this time."

Which artists are an inspiration to you and why?

"The last couple of years I'm really - like, REALLY - into Erykah Badu. I've been checking all her music and interviews, live gigs, etc. Basically everything there is to find online about her. I adore the combination of elements she puts into her music. It's all based on really cool grooves with the most beautiful harmonies (she's been working a lot with James Poyser, a pianist I adore). Her lyrics are so honest and very funny as well. Live, she's an absolute Goddess, and in the studio she keeps on challenging herself to push her boundaries and create something fresh. Additionally, she takes her time, there's no rush. I like that attitude. Apart from Erykah I've been deeply inspired by Moacir Santos, Jill Scott, Frank Ocean, Mary J Blige, Avishai Cohen, Stevie Wonder, Meshell Ndegeocello and Esperanza Spalding."

If there's one goal you want to achieve (no limit), what would it be?

"I'd love to build my own studio over the years and arrange a record deal with Blue Note for an album I can produce myself. Plus, I'd love to do a lot of live gigs with the best musicians at the best clubs such as Koko and The Jazz Café in London, Paradiso in Amsterdam, Le Poisson Rouge in New York, etc. Yes, I have a dream."

Want to learn everything there's to know about Roselien? Start by following her Facebook page. And, while you're at it, be sure to check her Soundcloud for some soul-drenched tunes.

Made In Belgium, Sunday October 8, NEST. Click here to head to the Facebook event page