STANDFIRST: From producing records for Jason Derulo to Chris Brown, working with music producer The Monarch, and reigning as an Independent Artist. John Galea is the rising star that no-one expected.
So John, tell me about yourself?
Hey, so I’m a singer/songwriter born in Great Yarmouth but now based in Central London.
Where did you find your love for music and how did it all start for you?
I have loved singing from an early age but musically it all started for me about aged 13, My Dad brought home an Electric organ and I started to teach myself how to play and write songs and it snowballed from there.
An early start into the industry then and how would you describe your sound?
My sound has developed over the years from electro to soul, but it has always been based around the piano, and soul music plays a huge part as well. I’d say Soul, piano based and pop is a good way of describing it now I guess.
Where do you find your inspiration for your music?
My life really, my songs are like my kids, they very close to me. Tracks like ‘White Dove’ are about loosing my mum and ‘I am a Survivor’ is about overcoming Cancer when I was younger. It all comes from a very deep place and its great I can share that in these songs.
I’ sorry to hear that but that gives your music such a grounding for something beautiful, what is it about song writing that you love?
It’s like therapy for me- I love the fact I can write about my life but also when I’m writing for another artist, I can completely switch off that side and concentrate on their message and life. Its like being an actor and playing someone else role for a bit.
Your latest hit ‘Honesty’ hit the charts and was a great success – what did that feel like as an artist?
It’s always great to get recognition for your work whether its awards or chart positions especially when you know where it all began. In this case I wrote this with electro Singer/Songwriter Frankmusik in his small studio in South London. I brought this idea of a chorus to a session and we just built it up from there. Its just great to get the music out there and rest is just an added bonus.
You work as an independent artist, how are you finding that? Are you searching for record labels to be signed to?
I’ve been an independent artist for a couple of years now and its great but its also very hard work! Its constant juggling from when you are releasing something you really have to be on the ball as your doing more than one job. I haven’t released a full album as of yet as the budget to do it completely just isn’t there. One day I would love to work with a major record label to work on a debut album, the materials are there, its just a case of getting the right team behind it.
Do you find it harder as an Independent artist versus being signed to a record label?
Very much so, the industry is very close and so it’s easier for major labels to have access to promotion etc, and obviously their budget is so much bigger. Saying that as an Independent Artist you do have control over what you release and your image, you can take bigger risks where you might not be able to as a signed artist. I do think both have their positives and negatives at the end of the day.
You have worked with so much talent from Beluga Heights and incredible producers such as The Monarch who has also worked with Jason Derulo and Chris Brown – How did that come about and what did it feel like to work with them?
Amazing!! I always love working with new producers and sharing ideas, and the fact they wanted to work together on my tracks is a great honour. The Monarch and I have worked on a few tracks now, ‘Struggling’, ‘Golddiggin’ and the reaction has always been great.
What are your plans for the rest of the year?
Currently I’m in the studio working on new material which I’m excited about. I’m currently writing a song for a new signed artist as well as hopefully releasing some for myself just after summer.
Photographer: Niklas Haze