Hailing from Malaysia, the award-winning singer-songwriter Shila Amzah showed at early age that she shared a talent for music with her father, a famous singer named as ND Lala. At the age of nine, Shila began making music and released her debut album a year later.
Shila continued her singing career by breaking out to China. By 2014, aged just 24, she had scooped up prizes in numerous awards shows including the inaugural “Asian Wave” reality singing contest and the second season of “I Am A Singer”.
The Malaysian artist is set to deliver a special performance presented by Live Nation. We caught up with her to chat about her musical inspirations and what to expect in the upcoming performance. Check it out!
Hi, Shila! Thanks for taking the interview. Can you tell us more about yourself especially for those who just discovered your music? E.g. where are you from, music background, where are you based?
My name is Shila and I’m a Malaysian currently based in Kuala Lumpur. I started singing at the age of 4 and had my first ever album recorded when I was 9, so this year is actually my 21st year in the music career. I’ve been living in China and Hong Kong during my music career where I learnt to speak Mandarin. I love good music in any genre, and any language.
What have you been up to these days during social distancing?
Malaysia has been in lockdown for a while, so we have been staying home and stay healthy. I love cooking so I have been cooking a lot for my family, looking after my baby boy Seth, as well as writing songs, I do miss performing live to my friends though.
Who/ what inspired you to start a career in music?
It has to be my father, ND Lala. He is a renowned singer and producer in Malaysia since the 70s, that’s why I get to expose to the music industry very early at my age. I still remember he used to ask me to sing while walking up and down the stairs at home to train my stamina and breathing, gosh that was a tough time haha.
Your career has gone from strength to strength since winning Asian Wave (Season 1) and being the second runner up in “I am a Singer 2”. What gave you the courage to pursue your music career in China?
When I was in Malaysia I was always under the shadow of my father, people used to call me “ND Lala’s daughter”. So I decided to pursue a career when my dad is not known for, and I always love the Chinese language so I have decided to move there after the first competition to develop my music. So now in Malaysia and China, people start calling my dad “Shila’s father”, which we always laugh about.
It’s amazing that you can sing in 10 languages, including English, Malay, Mandarin, Cantonese, Hindi, Tamil, Spanish, Korean, Japanese, and Italian! What’s your tip to artists out there who want to break barriers and bring their art to a bigger audience?
Always try to be out of your comfort zone, be open-minded to new things, whether it’s music, a language, a place, an online platform, or even food! It is the dream that can motivate you to achieve something beyond what you believe. Nervous is a good thing, it keeps me focus.
What has been your biggest career highlight so far?
I must say that would be my performances at the competition “I am a Singer 2”, that is kind of how my career in China begins. At home in Malaysia, I was also very touched by one of my concerts where I was managed to perform songs in 9 different languages.
What’s the favourite single you’ve released and why?
Out of many songs I really like my mandarin song “到时说愛我” by Khalil Fong. I love that song
because most of my songs in the past were sad and break-up songs, where 到时说愛我 is actually a very sweet and good vibe song.
Which artists would you like to collaborate with and why?
Wang Leehom, still, after so many years LOL. I hope one day, there will be a chance because I am still a big fan of him, so every time I get ask this question I would stick with my original answer: Wang Leehom!
What’s on your music playlist right now?
You wouldn’t believe it, right now I’m listening to lots of French music. I am also attached to workout music from artists like Dua Lipa and Drake, because that’s basically what I do every day, a routine workout at home.
We are very excited about your virtual performance! What should audience expect? Any special message to people who will be watching the performance?
I’ll be singing a new cover, and it’s actually my son’s favourite song right now, plus a few of my favourite numbers. There will also be an all-time favourites that I sung many years ago so there will be something for everyone. For my fans and whoever just came to know my music, I hope my session can bring a smile to your face, make you feel better during this time of uncertainty. We shall stay together!
Catch Shila Amzah live in action on Live From Home:
Friday, July 24, 5pm local time
• Live Nation Middle East - https://www.livenation.me/livefromhome
Friday, July 24, 8pm local time
• Live Nation Thailand - https://www.livenation.co.th/livefromhome
Friday, July 24, 9pm local time
• Live Nation Asia (YouTube) - https://www.youtube.com/c/LiveNationAsiaOfficial
• Live Nation China - https://www.livenation.cn/livefromhome
• Live Nation Hong Kong - https://www.livenation.hk/livefromhome
• Live Nation Taiwan - https://www.livenation.com.tw/livefromhome
• Live Nation Malaysia - https://www.livenation.my/livefromhome
• Live Nation Singapore - https://www.livenation.sg/livefromhome
• APACTix - https://www.facebook.com/APACTix
• One Production Singapore - https://www.facebook.com/OneProductionSingapore
• PR Worldwide - https://www.facebook.com/PRWorldwide
• tixCraft - https://www.facebook.com/tixcraftservice
Friday, July 24, 10pm local time
• Live Nation Japan - https://www.livenation.co.jp/livefromhome
• Live Nation Korea - https://www.livenation.kr/livefromhome