FEMALE Talks To: Julia Duclos On Being A Musician In Malaysia

Belt it out loud and proud!

If you ever thought of giving up on your passion just because you failed an exam or someone claimed that you aren’t enough, then think again. Julia Duclos reveals how she overcame her battles and succeeded in releasing her first single at the age of 23.

Source: Instagram / @juliaduclos

FEMALE: Tell us about your years growing up.

Julia: “I studied in local primary and secondary schools and graduated with a diploma in Psychology from SEGI University in 2016. The timing was great because I got the offer to do music while I was contemplating whether I should continue my studies or go after my passion. But I knew myself very well; if I’m engrossed in something, I’m going to be fully devoted to it and I can’t do two things at once. So after my audition with Sony Music Malaysia, they told me that they wanted to sign me on and I agreed. We got down to the details and it actually took about six months for me to sign the papers. It was nerve-racking and I still couldn’t believe it when I walked out and they said they enjoyed my signing. I’m glad that everything kind of feel into place.”

F: What’s the process of creating music like for you? 

J: “It’s pretty much self-expression of how I feel at the moment – there are days when I’m sad and there are days when I’m happy. There are also days when I don’t know what the hell I’m doing. But I just take it step by step. There’s never a set of direction of what I’m going to write about. It just sort of happens. So I go with the flow and tweak things along the way. For my single, I must say that it was completely different from the first draft that I wrote -in terms of genre and lyrics. Music never ends up turning out the way you expect it to. Three years from now, probably when I listen to my single, I might want to change it again. I’m a perfectionist and I feel that if I had it my way, I’ll still be tweaking my single. But thank God I’ve got Charlie Lim, my producer whom I work with in Singapore. He’s also a perfectionist who has taught me how to tweak things and be happy with them so that we can come up with something good.”

Source: @juliaduclos and @aimanazhar

F: What are your thoughts about the music scene in Malaysia? 

J: “We have a lot of upcoming artists that Malaysians should start paying attention to. It all starts at home. We definitely need local support and it’s important for us to pay attention to them and recognise their hard work. We get to learn a lot from different bands and people. It isn’t a competition in this industry; instead we’re working together to bring the industry up. I really hope that more and more people have this type of mentality because at the end of the day, you should only be in competition with yourself.”

F: What has been your biggest challenge to make yourself known to people out there? 

J: “It has to be finding a sound that’s unique to me. It involves a lot of long nights and studio sessions. As a singer, we are all supposed to have our signature sound because typically, we all need to have that one thing that differentiates us from the rest – be it in the way we sing, by the way we dress or even how we express ourselves. At the moment, I still haven’t found my signature style as it’s always changing, but that’s the beauty of art. However, I do know that I’m a pretty laid-back person who can be quite grungy or bubbly at times!”

F: What are some of the proudest moments so far, and in three years time, where do you see yourself? 

J: ” The recent one was at the Ram Jam Festival in Malaysia last year which was quite big. I actually performed using just a keyboard and an electronic touchpad, which was different from my usual set-up of just a guitar. I hope this year I’ll get a chance to perform at the Good Vibes Festival. In time to come, I see myself having a successful music career and hopefully, exploring more art fields. I love photography and film but my main focus is music. Once I’ve established myself, I’ll definitely incorporate these fields and try to hit the international mark. After all, you have to dream at the right time and not think too far ahead.”


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