Budding chef, artiste, and fitness enthusiast – is there anything this girl can't do?
Meet Talitha, Malaysia's indie-pop singer who's known for her bubbly personality, soulful voice, and sweaty Instagram Stories.
At just 23 years old, Talitha has already gained over 7.7 million streams on Spotify and graced both local and international stages, such as Sky Music Festival 2016 in Japan, Malaysia's SEA Games 2017 Closing Ceremony, Urbanscapes, and Good Vibes Festival, to name a few.
No stranger to the music industry, she's worked with some of Malaysia's best and international artists, including Man Bai, SonaOne, Darren Ashley, Ali Aiman, and Tatsuro Miller, among others.
We got to chat with Talitha as she shares what she's been up to during this quarantine, her cute cats, and her latest single with SonaOne:
SAYS: Hi Talitha! You've got tons of interests – motocross, rock climbing, baking, powerlifting – and singing seems to be one of the many. Tell me about why and how you first got into music.
Talitha: Singing/music was the first thing I ever took interest in since I was around eight or nine years old! I loved singing, wanted to sing to the world. In primary school, I'd have friends surround me and I'd sing super softly and shy. Hahaha.
I think what triggered my interest was watching my cousin join a singing thing and remembering wanting so bad to be the one up there singing instead. And ever since then, I never stopped singing.
As years went by, I finally picked up playing the guitar, followed people like Tyler Ward, Kina Grannis, Tori Kelly on YouTube and thought, "If they can do it, why can't I?". I had a camera and all so I started posting covers on YouTube.
SAYS: While we're all at home right now, how have you been spending your time?
Talitha: I work out every morning, it helps me start my day freshhh! Haha.
I've also been working on finishing up some new music, producers found a site called 'Soundtrap', where we can work remotely (I FINALLY get to use my recording mic that's been sitting my closet for almost six years lol). So this site allows me to record myself and the producer would IMMEDIATELY get the recordings I've saved. Pretty awesome.
I've also been baking and cooking a lot, recently stopped cause I hate the cleaning up process. HAHA. So takeaways/Grab/beepit has been great.
Oh and my cats, they're my life.
SAYS: Aside from cooking, I've noticed you love eating too! If you had to eat one dish and dessert for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Talitha: Recently discovered VCR's banana kurma walnut loaf - that's probably the dessert I'd have for the rest of my life. It's freaking amazing, practical too! If you think about it, banana and kurma are great energy foods. Hahaha.
But I've always preferred savoury foods over sweets. So this is hard, I basically love 99% all Asian foods... 'coz its Raya season, my current obsession would be lemang with serunding.
SAYS: Your latest single with SonaOne talks about opening up to love. What inspired 'openup'? And what was it like working with him?
Talitha: Awh man, Mika (Sona) is a genius like I wish I know what goes on in his mind! Haha. I can't really say what inspired 'openup', I literally picked up the guitar and just wrote down my feelings, and played it for Mika, he liked it and we started working on the track!
So what actually happened was, we were in the studio, he recorded my guitar for the song. Then I fell asleep, woke up, and he was basically almost done with the whole idea of the song. HAHA. To be fair I was narcoleptic and it was probably 2am or 3am in the morning... But yeah, Mika is amazing.
'openup' was basically me saying, take charge and go get what you want, don't wait for it to happen, just do it. And it was me asking, "What's wrong with a girl making the first move?" I wrote this in 2015? It's 2020 now. haha.
In an interview with BFM, SonaOne also shared that he wasn't supposed to be part of the song initially.
"It was Talitha's song. When she came to me and asked if I wanted to be part of it, I said sure, let's go for it... but let's make the story more interesting - let's make it like from the guy's perspective, 'Well, I'm flattered but I'll help you hook up with somebody else instead. Haha. I'm more your homie than your romantic thing.' I thought that was a fun dynamic... I love the final version."
SAYS: What would be your dream event/festival to perform at? And which artiste have you always wanted to collaborate with?
Talitha: There are so many festivals! Hahahaha I'd wish to be able to perform at ALLLLL event/festivals, I mean, yeah. Why limit myself to one?
If we're talking international, probably Jeremy Zucker, Lauv, Billie Eilish, Rendy Pandugo from Indonesia! (Does Yuna count?)
But local, SonaOne (again hehehe), lost spaces, NYK, JAIE, man there are so many talented people I'd like to work with. Haha. Can you tell? I'm bad with options.
SAYS: What can fans look forward to from you this year?
Talitha: I'm dropping my album sometime in July or August! Hehe. Basically adding the songs you've already heard with maybe a couple of new songs, and then slowly dropping songs onto the album throughout the year.
Listen to 'openup' here:
This feature is part of the #saysplaylist series, providing your playlist with a breath of fresh Malaysian air.
If you have any Malaysian bands, singers, or songs that you think we should feature, drop us a message!