Get To Know Natalie Shay 

Known for her unforgettable live performances and euphoric anthems, Natalie Shay is an indie-pop artist who continues to carve her undeniable talents into the scene. Returning with her highly anticipated new record “Heaven”, Shay brings her exceptional fables to life. 

With unparalleled resonance and captivating musicality, her new single is nothing short of perfection. In an ode to personal growth, Shay’s remarkable authenticity comes to life, piquing the interest of global audiences with tales of maturity and reflection and ambition. 

In light of her latest release and new EP MILK, she catches up with Noctis to delve into her latest single, Shay’s rich musical heritage and how the lockdown shaped her sound…

Hey Natalie! Congratulations on the release of your new single “Heaven”! Before we delve into your new music, let’s take it back to the beginning. When did you first start discovering your sound? 

I’ve been writing music for over 10 years, my songs have matured and developed with me i think, and stylistically, when played on acoustic guitar, I feel all of my songs do have an identifiable writing style. as for production, this has developed as I’ve grown and formed more connections in the industry and collaborated with loads of talented people. just through trial and error really, have I been able to find the sound i think is ‘mine’, but with every different producer i work with, they add their own flare and sound to each track 🙂

You’re currently living in North London! Has the city inspired you and your music?

So much! I love london so much, I love the vast amount of people I’ve met in my life with all different backgrounds and stories, I think the city itself has shaped me as a person, which ultimately is what makes my lyrics. But also just being in a hub of so many creatives, and working with so many so regularly and being exposed to so much live music and performance, I believe all of this has totally shaped everything about what i do!!

One of the many things we love about your music is your relatability and genuine authenticity. You touch upon themes of love and self-discovery frequently across your repertoire. How has this intertwined into your new single “Heaven”?

Thank you! I definitely try to always write from the heart. Heaven, lyrically I feel is probably quite abstract and indirect, however every line and section does have its own deeper meaning, I wanted to get everything I was thinking at the time into this song, maybe I will do a line by line behind the lyric breakdown of this song 🙂

You mention that you learnt a lot about yourself in the lockdowns. How did the pandemic shape you and your sound? 

I think because for the first time in my life since I became my adult self, I had time to really think and reflect. I love how busy my life has been since I started my career 10 years ago, but there’s never really any days to stop thinking and reflect because there’s always something to do. Having the space to slow down, without feeling the guilt of taking a break deliberately, I really think I learned a lot about myself and the pandemic made me realise what’s important in life for happiness. I think everyone I collaborated with on this EP also went through similar things that year, thats why so many songs just poured out of these sessions.

Who has inspired you the most on your musical journey so far? 

I have met so many inspiring people throughout my journey so far that have shown me new things and touched my heart or inspired me creatively or productively. But the main reason I started music was Taylor Swift, I think she really shaped the current music scene of today, all of the females in music now killing it at any level, I think most of us were the first gen of swifties in 2009-2013.

You continue to flourish with each release! What messages are you hoping to portray to your listeners? 

I want my fans and listeners to grow with me, I want them to feel like they know me through my lyrics, as I don’t really open up too much about myself on social media, or talk too much about what i’m going through, but I put all of these feelings into lyrics, and I hope that people can interpret them in their own way with their own experiences and feelings, and relate. My main goal as a songwriter is to be relatable. Music got me through so much, I hope to do that for others. 

Knowing what you do now, about yourself and your music, what would you say to your younger self? Is there anything you’ve reflected on that you think you’d like to share?

I don’t really have any regrets about anything, so I kinda feel that everything I’ve learned, I’ve learned at the right time, and I’ve really enjoyed going back and listening to songs I’ve rutten over the years and seeing how my mind has changed, developed and grown. But I would like to say to my younger self, because there was a time where people in the industry told me to put the guitar down and it used to make me sad, because guitar to me, is an aid in telling my story, I wish that someone has just told me back then, that I was right, because since 2020 girls with guitars are what everyone loves 🙂

How has the fan reaction been recently? You’ve had a busy summer performing at loads of amazing festivals! How has this been for you? 

YES! It was so much fun, this summer I played at British Summertime Hyde Park, reading festival, y not? And many more! This has really been my first proper year of festivals, as everything was late to formulate in that area following the knockbacks in live from 2020 and covid. I’ve enjoyed it so much, genuinely the best summer of my life, I’ve met so many lovely new fans!!

We’ve heard that there is an EP on the horizon! Can you tell us a little bit more about this? 

My second EP ‘MILK’ is out now!! It’s a collection of 6 songs I wrote between 2020 and early 2021, every song is about an experience, emotion or discovery I felt throughout that period of my life. Overall theme of the EP being ‘growth’ I think, and how I feel like now I’m finally a woman, although i’ll probably say that every year forever as I continue to always look back and cringe at my ignorance of the year before haha. 

I collaborated with so many talented writers and producers on this EP, all of whom are now my dear friends, it’s a very special piece to me 🙂

Do you have anything else exciting in the pipeline for 2022 and beyond? 

HEADLINE SHOW 3 MARCH AT OMEARA LONDON!!! – and plenty more, maybe some new music early next year but you didn’t hear that from me 😉

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Photographer: Caill Shea, Holly McCandless-Desmond

Words: Alexander Williams