Artist Interview: NIKKI THORBURN - ILUKA
Walking in Circles to Her Place…
To draw comparisons to artists like Norah Jones and Joni Mitchell is an achievement in itself, but singer/songwriter NIKKI THORBURN from ILUKA doesn’t let the similarities phaze her. The day before her 20th birthday, NIKKI THORBURN sat down with CHAU TRAN in a busy Sydney cafe to talk music, travel and vintage clothing.
Sydney songstress Nikki Thorburn holds two things close to her heart: music and vintage clothing. Growing up around a creative family, it was no surprise to hear that music is what Nikki Thorburn was meant to do in life.
‘I’m lucky that my dad is very musical – he builds guitars so we always had thousands of guitars around the house. We’re always writing together and mum is also very creative being a graphic designer and photographer, so they’ve always been very supportive.’
Thorburn has a raw quality to her sound, which has already seen her compared to the greats like Joni Mitchell and Norah Jones, both of whom she is heavily influenced by. However, she doesn’t seem to care too much about the comparisons,
‘I prefer not to be categorised by anyone, because like any musician, we all want to be doing our own thing. We don’t want to be labelled. It’s fine to say that my voice sounds a little like someone else, but I try to stay away from being pigeon-holed.’
Spending the last year travelling around Europe, living and performing in parts of London and Paris, she’s already developed a penchant for travelling. And if by chance you had bumped into her along her travels, you might just have a song written about you,
‘I love to travel and meeting different people that inspires me and my writing. It’s always interesting to go to places and meet weird and crazy people. And I definitely write about all the people I meet – I just take out their names,’ she laughs.
Speaking of crazy, she reflected on the concept behind her new video, Walking in Circles which definitely shows that side of her personality,
‘There’s always that crazy and creative side of me. I always want to do things completely different and just surprise people.’
On the flipside, Thorburn also has a different side to her, which she hopes her fans will take on board when they listen to her music,
‘I love the feeling of nostalgia, so that’s what I always want my music to do. Tthat it brings up different feelings - reminds them of different places, people from that memory and let them choose who they want to be in that moment.’
When she isn’t feeling inspired, you’ll most likely find her In the Place, a song written when Thorburn wasn’t where she wanted to be and needed to be inspirational wise. But where exactly is that place for Nikki Thorburn?
‘I grew up in the Blue Mountains and just being there is always inspirin.g Getting away from the city and being able to surround yourself with no-one.’
If all else fails, and she’s not in the Blue Mountains or on a plane to somewhere exotic, then she’ll probably be vintage shopping,
‘My second passion is probably vintage clothing. I absolutely love it! I find that clothes can reflect who you are and your personality. I always love things with a story behind it and the fact that there is a story behind every piece of vintage clothing is quite fascinating.’
A perfect candidate for Vintage Kaviar, Nikki Thorburn is a breath of fresh air to the Sydney scene with her unique and raw sound. Be sure to catch her at one of her upcoming shows. Who knows, you just might be the subject of her next song.
NIKKI THORBURN’s EP ‘To the Place’ now, available on iTunes
Nov 26Pure Pop RecordsSt Kilda Vic, Australia
Dec 01The TreehouseByron Bay Nsw, Australia
Dec 04Front Gallery & Cafew/ Ben Wells & The …Canberra, Australia
Dec 07FBi Socialw/ Ben Wells & The …Sydney, Australia
Dec 08The Great Northern Hotelw/ Ben Wells & The …Newcastle, Australia
Rich Jacobs Interview On Untitled Mag
UM-How do you define your style?
RJ- I like to think of my style as a result of what I have seen, where I’ve been, experiences that life has taught me, what is learned being married, having a baby … my style is me. Not false or stylized, no makeup or airbrushing on … really is pure expression that comes from within. My work is a mirror of who I am and I’m close enough to hear it and do something about it. I also like working in the figurative and the abstract.
UM-Of all your works which stand out most are expensive Why?
RJ- And … do many faces, tell stories and keep track of the life experiences of people are like markers or pens people. I like to see people and faces are usually the first thing I see.
Read the entire interview on untitledmag.com.