Interview: RnB/Soul Singer-Songwriter NDAI Talks About Her New Single "Nobody's Ting" and How She Stands Out in Toronto's Urban Music Scene
NDAI is a Toronto based RnB/Soul singer-songwriter we've connected with for an exclusive interview. Wondering we'd want to interview NDAI? Listen to her new single "Nobody's Ting" below and you'll clearly understand why we wanted to touch base with this talented artist.
After reading our Q&A with NDAI, follow her on social media and stream/download "Nobody's Ting" on Spotify.
Congrats on your new single "Nobody's Ting"; it's a very dope track and very timely with the spring season. Tell us about how this song came about. Who produced it?
The song was produced by Kenneth English and written by myself. My first track was done by Kenneth English too and I just like his style. I purchased the song from him online and got to writing.
Describe your creative process for "Nobody's Ting", as well as your songs in general. Also, do you prefer to write in the studio or a certain location?
The song by itself was actually not as bluesy as it sounds now, but the way I sat in the song made it sound more blues style. I was inspired by the era of Pam Grier as Foxy Brown, so I hope I captured that 60’s/70’s vibe with a modern twist.
I usually start with a beat I like or some chords and then I fill in the melody first, after that I usually write the chorus first because that’s what people are going to remember and that’s what anchors the context of the rest of the song. I don’t have a specific place I like to write, but I usually like to be alone so I don’t have any distractions.
So much attention has been placed on Toronto's urban music scene over the past few years due to the great music that Drake, PARTYNEXTDOOR, The Weeknd, dvsn, as well as others, have dropped. How do you stand out from the crowd as an emerging RnB artist in Toronto?
I think I stand out because I’m different. My sound and look are not the usual “RnB singer formula”. The music industry tends to find a formula that works and then repeats it over and over making slightly different variations of the same artist, and rightfully so if it’s not broken don’t fix it. I just write and dress how I feel; I’ve always had a style that’s been more classic and I’ve always loved RnB from the golden era so I like to think I merge old and new. I also like to write songs like ‘Nobody’s Ting’ that contrast the current music scene with a different more empowering message, I’m also very aware of important issues and things happening in the world so I always keep that in mind when I write. I think a lot of music today is out of touch with real human feelings, but I think that’s changing with this resurgence of love for RnB. I’m also very hands on with my work, as an independent artist I write my music and have all the creative control over my image and sound so I’m the one making all the creative decisions. I have the final say over what brands/artists/producers I align myself with.
If you could collaborate with any living artist regardless of genre on one song, who would you pick and why?
That’s so hard to answer because there’s so many! Ultimately I’m a Mariah Carey “stan” (lol) so I would want to collaborate with her, probably as a songwriter not to be on the track together because I would never think my parts of the song are good compared to her and then I would just end up sounding like her haha! But I think there’s so much to learn from her; she is the greatest singer and songwriter of our generation easily. I don’t think she gets enough credit for what she has given the music industry and people who enjoy RnB. She’s a legend.
For a duet I would definitely say Daniel Caesar (also from Toronto), he’s just amazing and so genuine, his music is a gift and I think that it would be a dope collab.
What comes next after the "Nobody's Ting" single? Can we expect a video and will this song appear on an upcoming EP or LP this year?
I am currently working on my EP to be released later this year. I haven’t decided if my first two singles will be on it, it might be all new songs but we’ll see how it comes together. There’s talks of a video being made for both singles but that’s not confirmed yet, we’re trying to make moves that make the most sense so no videos yet but stay tuned!