Confidence and ease are the sounds that vibrate within singer-songwriterNattali Rize‘s every motion, like breathing in and breathing out. Collectively she has felt her path, her journey, is to leave this world a little better than she entered it. Through her mind, to her heart and out of her mouth, comes the essence of who she is. A creative filled with wonder, music and compassion.
On Sunday, July 26, Nattali Rize and Notis will perform at Livewire in Scottsdale. Read about Rize’s passion for social justice and her inspiration, in the interview below…
The Spec: Claiming no homeland, but your world — talk to me about your early years of growing up. Where did you spend your formative years? What influences did you witness at home, in your town, and community? What was it in your home life and in your parents that you took to build the person you’ve become? Nattali Rize: I grew up in Australia between Melbourne and the alternative coastal town of Byron Bay. Some of the main things I took growing up come from my mother. She brought us up to be grateful for what we had, to have an open heart and arms for family and friends that need it.
She worked for an indigenous organization for more than 10 years, so growing up my extended family was from that community. It gave me a sense of the injustices faced by indigenous people on a daily basis, but also the importance of community and that openness and sharing of culture, food, energy and family.
TS: You have notable confidence. With this presence of self, are you comfortable with public speaking about topics you are passionate about? NR: Yes, I am comfortable speaking about what I am passionate about. As most people who are passionate about anything are. I often join panel discussions on a number of topics/issues and speak regularly at rallies and protests.
TS: What issues growing up did you feel needed to be addressed? How did you address them yourself? NR: Growing up, I felt the gap between rich and poor. I wondered and asked the adults in my life, why are some people so poor and others have so much?
I was also aware of racism as a kid, both experiencing it firsthand and seeing it being aimed at my friends and family. Australia, like other places, is still struggling with racism to this day.
On one hand it is one of the most mufti-cultural places I’ve ever been to. On the other, there’s still a lot of ignorance and deeply rooted prejudice that still hasn’t been dealt with on a national scale too completely. Eradicating the old colonial mindset from the education system, language and culture we see on TV and in the papers, we have a ways to go.
I also recognized the injustice and cruelty in the meat industry and took up a vegetarian diet quite young.
TS: What about now? This place in time. What is it that you desire to see? Do you feel that what you desire is actually doable? If so, how? NR: I create energy to change paradigms. I create energy to bring down illusion and assist in creating a shift in consciousness. I create vibrations and frequencies to inspire yours and my generation, which in turn is a reflection of the inspiration I get from our people worldwide who are taking their power back. That’s what we all need to see. It is not only possible, it’s already happening. So, I generate sounds to amplify this movement toward real freedom and remind myself and my global family that we have the power in us to create our destiny. We must not wait or depend on politicians or “leaders” to do anything other than serve the system they are there to serve, which is not the system that serves the people.
We are waking up now and that is how it must be… I am here to contribute to and support that process.
TS: Is music as much a part of who you are, as say eating, breathing, drinking? NR:Yes, music is a food and necessity for me, as much as oxygen and water.
It’s sound. Everything in this world is sound. Everything has a resonant frequency and when you break down an atom or particle it goes all the way to a vibration. Therefore, everything is vibration, sound, frequency. Music is life, and we haven’t even begun to realize its full power.
TS: You’ve now come together with Notis… can’t help but think Rize & Notis is not a mistake, as it seems obvious you don’t create anything that’s not deliberate. Talk to me a bit about this partnership. As I read, “two cultures together to create one.” Elaborate on the cultural aspect, and how this merging project is creating one. What is the goal at hand? (Aside from creating fantastic music!) NR: We’ve come together to make music that carries intention, vision and frequencies to bring down Babylon‘s system.
We are evolving musicians, artists, humans that do what we do, because we couldn’t do anything else and still feel fulfilled. The coming together of our energies has created something different from what we both previously had created. Something new that has never been done before in terms of an Australian-based artist/team moving to Jamaica and starting a studio and live show project with a full Jamaican band and production crew.
For me, it was important on a number of levels to spend some proper time in Jamaica and connect with the music, the people and the culture there. It has been a huge part of what inspired me musically since I was a little kid. When I met Unga Barunga from Notis Productions, we instantly had a connection that was hard to ignore, so I followed my intuition and spent six months writing and creating music with Notis in Jamaica. This is the music we are now touring in the U.S. and releasing our debut EP this Aug. 7!
TS: Forgive my ignorance Nattali, but I don’t recall seeing too many female singers, nor male for that matter, in the music industry pick up a megaphone. Why, where, and ? (BTW, love it!) NR:I simply love the sound of the megaphone, it is something I’ve used on stage at different times over the past ten years, and it feels like the right time to bring it back into cycle (a wide smile came across her face).
TS: Symbols mean something. I’ve noticed there are some that repeat themselves in patterns within the jewelry you wear. Infinity, connections. Can you tell me what those mean to you? NR: Symbols are energy, too. I wear certain symbols at certain times for that very reason. I’m currently learning, well I’m always learning, but now I’m going in deeper with sacred geometry and it’s connection to Egypt. The Flower of Life, the Vesica Pisces, Genesis Pattern, Tree of Life, Fruit of Life, the Platonic Solids, all that good stuff, that’s what’s inspiring me right now. Those are the symbols and information that I inevitably will be surrounding myself with. I also draw on my Native American and Samoan heritage for guidance through symbols and you can see that inspiration throughout my works with my band Blue King Brown and my solo project.
TS: There are those who will look for the damnable loop-hole to make their own points, so as I play devils advocate here a bit, bear in mind, it is to give those who like to light fires an answer from you up front.
If I understood your bio, you speak against capitalistic and corporate ideals, yet to make money to create one’s passion, this blending of selling to further one’s own cause must happen (IE selling merchandise, albums, etc…). This is your platform to either espouse how this works for you, or to shut the door and say its your problem… NR: Yes, it’s an important question and a reality that artists like me have to deal with. The one thing I detest more than the monetary system is that I am still in a place where I have to use it, not for everything, but for some things. My management and I are the kind of thinkers that are always trying to find creative ways to exchange without using money. Quite often we do that, we offer our services in return for others like publicity, website building, etc…. We also created aweb versionof our newest Blue King Brown album where fans can listen to the entire album for free. We encourage people to just enjoy the music and spread the word.
As we continue to transition our business and personal lives away from the monetary system, as much as possible, we are in no doubt still bound by some of its chains. We do encourage our fans and community and non-government organizations who want to work with us, to think outside of the box and offer an exchange of another type. We are always open to it. I have hope and belief that we will move further and further from this system and its money. The more people wake up and realize the prison it is, the more they will find ways to break free from it, and they will be the most diverse, colourful and creative ways possible.
TS: Dropping new tracks, touring… is there a full-length album possible and if so when? Who would you have produce it? NR:A full-length album is definitely in the cards. First, it’s the Nattali Rize & Notis EP, New Era Frequency,which is being released August 7, 2015.
There are a bunch more songs and music that I’ve been working on with different producers and I am really looking forward to getting them up and out there into the atmosphere!
I’m always open and looking for different sounds and producers to work with, so I will continue to seek the right people to create with.
TS: Branding, and marketing two words that can be both good and evil. You’ve just been given the opportunity to take the world stage…what would you like to say in one sentence that is the summation of everything you believe? NR:Wake Up and Live Free, you are more powerful and potent than you’ve ever been led to believe, it’s time to reclaim your Power, your Identity, your Freedom and your Future! Rize Up.
Thanks for your considered questions. I am grateful for the opportunity to share my words and thoughts. Respect and give thanks again. Bless.