Meet Chess Galea. She’s the singer-songwriter based in London whose tracks we’ve been serious obsessing over recently. We caught up with her to chat musical inspirations, fave gigs and dream collaborations…
Tell us about yourself…
I’m a Maltese girl living in London. Coming from a musical household I was clasically trained on piano and singing and then decided to take the ‘pop path’, even though I still love classical music. My sound developed by mimicking Freddie Mercury and Christina Aguilera for hours on end, making up dance routines in the playground and writing songs in my fluffy diary. I think my sound has matured from bubble pop to more soul-pop, and I will keep trying to make it better and better!
What five travel essentials can’t you live without on tour?
Hair straighteners, raw food bars, NYX matte lip cream, ginger tea, phone charger!
Your videos are amazing, what’s the inspiration?
Thank you! I usually take time out and figure out what it is I really want to do, what I want to say, and how. I think the biggest inspiration is the want for change, creation and contribution to the world.
How would you describe your aesthetic and how does it inspire your music?
Raw, real and honest. I want to make music that is timeless, that means something to somebody now, as well as in 50 years time. I want to make people feel good. I want to make some sort of impact.
Who’s the coolest person you’ve met so far?
I met Keith Harris, Stevie Wonder’s manager and he was the nicest dude ever.
Where can we see you perform next?
Abu Dhabi if you’d like to come!
What’s the best gig you have ever played?
Silvana – New York. The people were SO supportive and inviting. I want to go back there!
What’s on the agenda for the rest of 2016?
I’m releasing a music video for my album track ‘Beautiful To Me’, which was shot in Malta and shows off the beautiful Island. I’ve also recorded two cover videos of 80’s/90’s dance tunes ‘Sky’ and ‘Sweet Dreams’ but turned them into jazzy-swing styles! I’m also writing new material and collaborating with other artists.
Who would you like to collaborate with and why?
Brian May because he’s a genius. I’d have to get past the fan-girling first.
Why do you think the relationship between fashion and music is so strong?
Music is an expression of self equally as much as fashion. They complement each other so well and bring out the message more prominently as a team.
What’s your favourite music video?
Scream – Michael Jackson
What gets you hyped for a gig?
I need to go through the process of putting my make up on, doing my hair, picking a cracking outfit, listening to my favourite songs… and then I’m ready to go!
Who did you listen to growing up?
Britney Spears, Queen, Mozart…. it was a little extensive!
Who’s your biggest musical inspiration?
Prince – one of my biggest regrets is that I never got to see him live.
What’s your guilty pleasure, most played track?
I played Hit Me Baby One More Time so many times I had to buy a new CD. I’m sure I’m not alone.
Last album you listened to all the way through?
Joanne – Lady Gaga
What track gives you goose bumps?
Hurts – Stay. The first time I heard it my arm hair was vertical.
What’s your spirit animal?
Who are you currently stalking on Instagram?
Tammy Hembrow. I just love her clothes & make-up
What makes you laugh?
What’s your secret addiction?
Zoodles. And Shellac nails.
Who’s your celebrity wannabe wife?
Jessica Alba. So hot!
What would be your superhero power?
I’d like to freeze time so I can finally get some sleep without missing anything! Haha.
What was the first thing you did this morning?
Tell us something weird about yourself…
I used to scrunch up tin foil and put it in my teeth when I was a kid cause I wanted to have braces but never needed them… I put up with the taste and everything!
Who are you listening to at the moment?
Sinead Harnett, she’s got the smoothest voice! Craig David, because his new album is a banger! And Lady Gaga, cause I’m trying to learn some of her tunes on piano!
What’s your song to get you ready for a party?
Any Britney song.
What has been your favourite place you’ve travelled to?
Venice. Or New York.
If you were a Spice Girl which one would you be?
Posh – OBVIOUSLY. Life goals.
What do you love about Missguided?
I love that I can can go on there and find something I like or need, every time! I love how good it looks and I love that I can afford it all. Ticks every box.
What item of clothing can’t you live without?
Right now, anything made out of crushed velvet, tops, dresses… I’m loving them!
What items do you make sure you pack on your travels?
Good pair of heels, leather skinnies, sunglasses and a striking Bandage Dress
Who is your style icon and why?
Victoria Beckham – she’s timeless, stylish and classy.
Where do you look for fashion inspiration?
I love the vintage shops in Soho, otherwise, I’m constantly looking online!
What best describes your style?
Simple, classy, statement, non-fussy.
What’s your favourite fashion trend this season and why?
Crushed Velvet. Told you I’m obsessed!
If you could steal anyone’s wardrobe who’s would it be?
You can only wear one outfit for the rest of the year, what is it?
Ripped jeans and velvet crop top.
Which city has the best fashion?
Wanna know more? Follow Chess on Insta @chess_galea
…and listen to her tracks on Soundcloud: