Liverpool based artist and producer TEE, has released his first ever single ‘Real’ along with an accompanying music video.
For his first release, it’s very mature. TEE’s dedication to his sound over the last three/four years is evident.
The change in styles and textures feels very intentional. Often it’s easy to feel lost as a listener when there are tempo changes and stylistic switches, but with ‘Real’ you’re gripped from the start.
The spoken word approach gives it a poetic feel, forcing you to listen to what he’s saying. It’s not just a catchy hook to match the beat – it’s a story, and he’s spilling his heart into the words. When the beat drops and the style changes, he picks up the cadence slightly and the lyrics become more emotive. The lyrics and the beat to match were incredibly well thought-out; his skill to produce and lyrical technicality both carry the narrative so well.
To celebrate the success of his first single, I spoke to TEE about his work as an artist and producer and of course, his new track.
How does it feel to have finally released your single?
“It feels surreal if I’m honest. I’ve probably been honing in on my sound and approach for about 3/4 years now. So to actually have something that I am 100% happy with out in the world is weird. It’s just really nice to start the outward journey, it’s been very behind the scenes for a while so its nice to be open about my music.”
What was the inspiration behind the song?
“I try and draw from things that are close to me in everyday life for inspiration. For me my music is different ways to tell a story. There are a few different narratives that can be latched on to from listening to it. One of the main ones is baggage. Everyone has dealt with someone who is dealing with their own baggage, whether it be something that they know affects them or not. The inspiration comes from how we deal with it, are we insecure about it, are we outwardly okay with it, do we need someone us to help us validate ourselves. Our mind is a constant battle, I just wanted to narrate on it a little.”
What genre of music do you think you fall under?
“This is a bit of a hard one. As well as being an artist I am a producer. I produce things from Pop to Hip Hop to Folk etc. For me each genre tells a story in a different way. These are all influences that I steal from to make my own music. So it’s hard to necessarily but all my music into one category. But I guess somewhere in the Hip-Hop/R&B sphere.”
Do you have any specific artists you look up to or that inspire your music?
“Yeah for sure, there are a few artists that it inspire me: Kanye West; Andre 3000; Labrinth; Thirdstory; Shakka; Wretch 32 and Ghetts.”
Do you think being able to relate to an audience is a big factor in your writing?
“10000%. I think this is one of my most driving goals. I love the idea of starting a conversation, making people think. So for me, the music that I make is super personal, in the hope that if I can take the plunge and say, ‘I’ve been through some stuff and I’m happy to talk about it. I’ll go first, if that means that it creates a comfortable space for someone else to open up and talk’.”
When did you first realise you wanted to have a career in music and how did you get into it?
“I’ve alway been in and around music from young. I grew up in church, a lot of my family sing and are heavy listeners of music. When I was 17 and not doing so well in my A-Levels, my dad straight up just asked me what I wanted to do. If I could pick anything in the world, what would that be. I’m so grateful for that day. I picked music and never looked back.”
What can we expect from you this year?
“This song is the first song from a 7 track EP that I will be releasing on the 26th of Feb, which I’m super excited about. I have a lot of content and music that I can’t wait to share. Then from there, the floodgates open lol. So hopefully just a lot of more!”
To keep up to date with his latest releases, follow @anartistcalledtee on Instagram.