Auckland-based, South African born musician Denel has had a busy twelve months with multiple single releases – including a collaboration with Max Key, Live My Life. After spending time overseas in the recording studio, Denel has now released his latest single, Let Go.

Chatting about the new tune, Denel explained “Let Go is my newest drop, and it’s all about this idea of letting go of the past and realising that you have an opportunity right now in the present to direct your future along a better path.”

Denel describes the recording process as fun, and the completion of Let Go involved flying across the ditch. “I flew over to Melbourne to record this track with Anise K and Daniel Kelaart who are amazing producers. They gave me a lot of flexibility to write the track out myself, while they worked around the production aspects of it. Pretty stoked with how it turned out.”

Talking about inspirations and his go-to place to write and create tunes, Denel mentions he likes to “conjure up creative ideas” on his balcony! “There’s just something about good weather and good views that brings out the best in creative ideas. I’m inspired by real life and the way I’m feeling at any given moment.”

When asked about one song he wishes he’d written, Denel responds that at this current point in time, it’s How Do You Sleep by Sam Smith: “I feel like it’s definitely something I would have done in terms of sound and direction. I love it, it shows a different side of Sam Smith and it’s a cool contrast.”

Shooting music videos in picturesque locations across the world for his previous singles, including The Lights which was made by award-winning director Shae Sterling (Stan Walker, TEEKS, Mitch James), Denel said he loves being part of the “visual creative process.”

“It’s an opportunity to really show a different aspect of the song in a visual form and to really showcase different dimensions of a concept or idea. I love that aspect about art in general.”

After collaborating with fellow kiwi musos including Jamie McDell, Jupiter Project and Max Key, Denel names one of his dream collaborations – Khalid. “I’m loving what Khalid has been doing, I think he has a huge depth to his music and that is really inspiring.” Ed Sheeran, Halsey and Chance The Rapper are also on his radar.

Denel has been making his way onto the scene for a while, with him and his band, dancers and team while touring with Titanium in 2014. That series of shows wasn’t his first rodeo as he fondly remembers his “first time playing a festival and first time performing a set of [his] own music” at Parachute Festival 2013. He has his sights set next on performing on a Bay Dreams stage: “I think that would be a pretty dope stage to be on – especially when thinking about the location too!”

Even though he’s been busy promoting his new tune, Let Go with the first live performance on WhatNow this month and radio appearances, Denel is already preparing for his next music release – and it’s soon! “I’ve got another single on the way for the end of October! I think it’s a personal banger and I hope everyone else does too. Looking forward to dropping an E.P sometime next year too, so stay tuned for that!”

Denel is definitely on a roll and one to watch – his new single Let Go is out now on all streaming platforms with the music video on his YouTube channel.

From tour managing boybands to working massive events and interviewing international talent, HAZEL REID is in love with the craziness that is the entertainment industry.


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