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GET TO KNOW:UPSAHL

by Kitty Robson

Meet the mind behind fiery new EP ‘Sagittarius’.

“If somebody asked me to explain myself at my core as a human being, I would tell them to listen to Sagittarius”, says Arizona-born singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist UPSAHL, “Each song represents a different part of me that makes me who I am… I crave change, I live for intensity, I’m extremely passionate (sometimes to a fault), I exert power in as many aspects of my life as I can, and I’m unbothered as fuck.” And if you know a thing or two about astrology, you’ll be saying to yourself ‘sounds like a fire sign!’, and you would not be wrong.

Driven by an intense desire to create and express, UPSAHL’s new EP captures exactly what she stands for as an artist, and as a human too. Celebrating self love, empowering us with acceptance, boosting us with confidence, Sagittarius is a project all about stepping into your truth and honouring what you find. Having released her debut self-titled EP at just 14, it’s no wonder that UPSAHL continues to find herself through her music, and she wants her listeners to do the same: “When people listen to this EP, I hope they feel inspired to own every aspect of themselves and scream about it at the top of their lungs, because that’s what I got to do while writing these songs.”

A cherry on top of her triumphant year – from her times supporting Yungblud and FLETCHER to her sold out debut headline world tour to her to her songwriting for Reneé Rapp and GAYLE – Sagittarius just confirms that UPSAHL’s meteoric rise isn’t slowing down any time soon. We met the fiery star to celebrate the release of her new EP, so GET TO KNOW UPSAHL with us now…

Who is UPSAHL?

I am a person who uses songwriting as therapy and harnesses the energy of people when I perform those songs for them at shows.

What makes you want to make music?

For me, making music is something that I feel like I need to do. It’s how I process my feelings and work through different aspects of my life, so I don’t think there will ever be a time in my life where I don’t make music.

Congrats on your new single ‘Into My Body’, tell me a bit about the making of that song.

Aye thank you! I wrote it about a time in my life where I was feeling really out of body, caught up in my head, and dissociating from everything. I was just getting off of tour, and for the first time in a long time, I wasn’t surrounded by chaos and constant brain stimulation, so I was left to me and my own thoughts. I’m an intense person, so whenever something is slightly off, I feel it HARD. I went into the studio with my friends Elijah Noll and Evan Blair to vent about this feeling, and we ended up writing a sad and vulnerable song over a high energy dance record… Then my friend Pete Nappi finished the production on it to make it feel a little more rocky. I think the juxtaposition of the lyrics and the production is really representative of how I deal with my feelings – haha!

What can we expect from your upcoming EP?

My next EP is a look into the different parts of me that make me who I am, which at the end of the day, is a textbook Sagittarius lol. Each song represents a piece of me, including my need for change, intensy, and passion, as well as the unbothered side of me that loves to exert power over my life when I can and wants to just have a good ass time. Writing this EP was such a freeing process for me where I learned how to own who I am, so I hope that everyone can find a little piece of themselves while listening to these songs.

What are your earliest memories of music?

I grew up in a very musical family. My dad was in punk bands throughout my childhood, so I was surrounded by music before I could talk. I think my first memories of music were my dad having band practice at our house when I was about 5 years old, and I would literally fall asleep to a punk band blasting music in my living room!

How would you describe your work in 3 words?

Fuck Shit Up.

Every artist has their muse. Who or what is a source of inspiration for you?

My dad has always been a big source of inspiration for me. Watching him make music and play shows while I was growing up is the reason I wanted to be an artist.

What are the five albums that you feel have shaped you the most personally?

Abbey Road – The Beatles, Rock Steady – No Doubt, The Bends – Radiohead, Pinkerton – Weezer, Anti – Rihanna

How do you navigate the music scene as a young creative?

I think the biggest thing I’ve learned being in the music industry is to compare myself to where I was a year ago instead of comparing myself to other people. It honestly keeps me sane.

What should be the role of new-gen artists in modern society?

I think our role as artists right now is to speak our minds, even if that means pissing people off. As fans, if we’re seeing artists we love say whatever the fuck they want, we’ll feel empowered to do the same, which is how change is made.

What do you hope people take away from your work?

I hope people feel inspired and empowered when they listen to my music. I make songs that make me feel good in times when I need a pick me up, so I hope my music can help pick other people up, as well.

Where do you to see yourself in five years?

At the Grammys 😉

What’s next for you?

I’m about to start the next leg of my first headline tour in Australia and then going to Europe and the UK.

Press play on UPSAHL’s Sagittarius below now.

photography
Ana Trindade
styling
Paolo Casseb
hair and makeup
Athena Efstathiou
styling assistance
Flossie Doherty
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