Telihana is my favorite pop star. I met her when I first moved to Brussels in 2007 and we hit it off right away. Tall, graceful, beautiful, and exotic, she has a certain sparkle in not only her outgoing personality but also her striking looks and inquisitive intelligence. Telihana is often my Muse in my photographs and we had a very recent session together in Antwerp last month.
This girl is all fire – it’s non-stop communication with business partners and friends, exploring technology opportunities when she is wearing her entrepreneur hat, carpe diem lifestyle of traveling around the world, all while holding down a full time job. Telihana, in typical fashion, is juggling many entrepreneurial balls at the same time and I’d like to share more about her music and projects with you.
1. How did you get started in the music industry?
I’ve always loved singing! Ever since I was little my parents said I would jam to anything that was on… even bouncing around in the play pen when I was just a baby. I was involved in shows at school, musicals, vocals for bands, competitions, singing the national anthem at sport events (!) ha… anything I could do with music I did.
But it was in Europe that I really had a chance to do what I always wanted to do. It started with singing for DJs before I met my amazing production duo, The Bionix. Now I’m writing my own music, managing my career, and there’s nothing in the world that makes me happier!
2. Did you always want to be a performer?
I’ve always DREAMED to become a performer! There’s nothing I like better than the energy of being on a stage… my friends will all tell you, I love an audience, haha…!
3. You are not only a performer but also an entrepreneur. Fill us in on the things that you are working on?
Definitely working on a lot of projects at the moment – beside my corporate job in which I manage an international import/export company, I started my own tech-fashion business called Rogue Concepts (Check it out! www.rogueconcepts.com). And of course the music industry isn’t just about singing and dancing; it’s as intricate a business as any other.
It’s been an amazing journey so far… every sector has so much to offer, and I find the learning process to be very exciting. And – business is business – so though every project I’m working on is separate and independent, it’s always very interesting to see how one can utilise the same skills in each part.
My friends say my brain is always going a million miles a minute, but I wouldn’t know how to live any other way…
4. Who are your role models in life?
I’d have to say my parents (cliché but true!). They’ve learned to live a life of balance. I admire their hard work and the method they’ve chosen to pursue happiness. There are many others in my life that have touched me and taught me, but to me there has been nothing more impacting in my life than the values that my family has taught me. Work hard, play hard – but keep it in balance…
5. Who are your musical influences?
So many from so many different styles: The pioneers, the legends: Michael Jackson, Madonna, The Beatles; and learning all the time from our current stars – Shakira, BEP, Gaga, Gwen Stefani, Pink, Beyoncé, Rihanna… a few miscellaneous artists mixed up in there: Drake, Lil Wayne (I love my hip hop) RHCP, The Cat Empire, John Mayer, The Strokes… the list goes on and on… you can learn something from every piece of music.
6. How do you describe your music to people?
Fun, happy, party music that makes you wanna move! Lighthearted and energizing – it’s music that can have international themes that can be shared through the cultures.
7. What is a typical day for you?
Typical…? There are no typical days! I’m always traveling – often for different reasons – there is really very few typical days.
I’ll give you this week’s daily schedule – because atypical is typical for me…
~7:00 – Gym
~8:00 – Office (anything I need my computer for)
~18:00 – Studio (writing sessions, recording, etc…)
~23:30 – Home
Going to NYC for Halloween next week so we have a lot of deadlines to meet before I go! It’s been intense!!!
Telihana is half Chinese, half Belgian. She speaks four languages: English, Chinese, French and Italian, has a black belt in martial arts and a Belgian national champion of kickboxing.
She is moving to LA in early 2012 to continue pursuing her music career. Check out her Sizzle Reel below:
8. What are some highlights from your performing career so far?
-My first music video shoot in NYC: extreme learning curve, but the best party I’ve ever thrown!
-Throwing a Launch Party in Beijing: set up in two weeks and packed the house out!
– Performing in Paris: an incredible view from the stage (Eiffel Tower) and my first French appearance!
9. Who are some celebrities that you have worked with?
I haven’t worked with any celebrities yet.
However I’ve partied with the likes of David Guetta, Fatboy Slim, Black Eyed Peas, NeYo, Afrojack, Prince… 🙂
10. What is your ideal vacation?
I love discovering new places: party cities, beach towns (or both – IBIZA!!!)
but I may have to stick to my paradise in Sardinia – my family house in the south.
I spent all my summers there as a kid, it’s always just pure bliss when I’m back. It’s the perfect balance of sun/sand/sea, Italian food, perfect weather and family and friends.
It is literally paradise…
11. What are your short term and long term goals in music?
Short term – I wanna be driving and turn on the radio and just hear one of my songs randomly…
Long term – Get a massive crowd at a summer festival to be rocking to a performance!
12. What keeps you balanced?
Family, friends, healthy and hearty fresh food (easy to eat well here in Europe), my To-Do list, working out creatively (suitcase and four flights of stairs in 1 minute!), having Internet everywhere I go, and sleeping whenever and where ever I get the chance.
13. What tips would you give to someone who wants to get into the music industry?
Be organized, treat it like a business, practice practice practice, network, have an internet presence, listen to your heart, only take criticisms seriously from people’s who’s opinion you respect, and work damn hard!!!
Check out Telihana’s music video “All Night”
Find Telihana on: