Get to know multi-instrumentalist, producer, and vocalist Estère, who is an artist whose unique perspective and creativity is endless.
Fresh off her Ones To Watch performance and a headline tour around Aotearoa, she spoke with Ash Wallace about what comes next. A slow burner in finding her connection to music, it wasn’t until the age of 11 when Estère picked up the drums that her natural sense of rhythm and coordination sparked the flame.
She was inspired and attracted to the quirky and insightful lyricism of a local band‘ cybersex on mars’ which she joined at the age of 13 on drums. The band was a catalyst for her to take music more seriously, and she was plunged into the world of lyricism and arrangement.
Exploring through high school she experimented with finding her voice "I entered Smokefree Rockquest in so many different strange configurations and even had an operatic breakdown in one of my songs".
Later converting her drum talent into a love of production came from the discovery of the MPC. After ending up in Germany with a friend’s machine, she spent all day locked in her room getting to know the intricacies of the hardware and exploring its capability.“ A friend had one and I just fell in love. Once it made sense, I was able to make beats really naturally and enrolled in a sonic arts course back in New Zealand”.
Learning more about production she started to upload beats online to Soundcloud, where the project found its audience of electronic RNB lovers. Since then, the project has seen her travel to festivals in Korea, Denmark, and across Europe, growing her audience and expanding her craft.
Estère has worked with a wide range of creatives and collaborators, engaging in particular with people of colour. Since releasing her 2021 album Archetypes, she has felt an energy shift toward not only engaging deeply with communities, events, and spaces to connect with people, but to use her music to engage with her ancestry and sense of identity.“ In order to evolve my sense of identity, I want to stay more rooted and more grounded in it musically. It’s instrumental to me making music and art.”.
Her next project will explore Cameroonian music where she traces her heritage through her father, with the goal of visiting Cameroon in person later this year.
Her recent headline shows saw Estère exploring a new type of performance, with 2 dancers on stage and a fully choreographed performance. Her goal was to bring a new layer to the stage without recruiting a huge band, integrating movement to emphasize the meaning of the songs. “It’s been so conceptual, the narrative of the moment, the shapes, I love that addition to live performance. I like to give the dancers space to play their instrument essentially – I can leave the stage and they’d be completely captivating”.
Estère is clearly a versatile and multi-talented artist, for which the opportunities are endless. “I feel like I am solidifying myself as a producer- artist more than ever. I am having fun and exploring on this next project”.
Fans of the project are waiting patiently to see what she does next, and where her creativity travels.