From singing in the shower, to YouTube covers, to back-flipping onstage. Meet Talitha Tan.
With her soothing voice and easy melodies, it’s hard not to start humming to the tunes of her songs which are like reflections of her bubbly, approachable, and carefree personality. But don’t be fooled, for she is one tough girl. For one she really loves working out. She is a rock climber, she lifts, and she does parkour. Doing back-flips onstage has become her signature.
Talitha Tan has been in the game for about seven years now. She had a hobby like most of us – singing in the showers. One day, she picked up a camera and started posting song covers on YouTube, inspired by the likes of Tyler Ward, Tori Kelly, and other stars who started their career from the video-sharing website.
She recalls her early days performing live at an open mic event at The Bee in Publika for the first time.
“It was really bad. It wasn’t the best performance ever. But it was an experience. I learnt from that. I still did a couple of covers back then, then eventually got around to my next open mic again. I was better, more prepared. Then slowly after that, people just found out about me through YouTube or even just the open mic and started calling me for performances. So from then on, I started doing what I do, and eventually writing music.”
Talitha’s humble beginnings paved a path for her career today. She got people talking with her self-written hit single Okay, which was produced by Darren Ashley. The music video was uploaded onto Talitha’s YouTube account and has garnered more than 405,000 views since May 2016.
The aspiring singer-songwriter, who is very generous with laughter and smiles, explains to us that she writes her songs based on personal experiences.
“I feel like it’s another form of communication when I’m not feeling so good, or when you feel like you’re not able to communicate with people about how you feel. That’s when I pour my feelings into music.”
“When I feel the worst, I write the best. So I’m just like ‘Uh, who wants to break my heart? I don’t mind, you know, so I can write.’ That kind of thing,” says Talitha laughingly.
When she is not doing music, she lifts weight. Yes, this amazing girl can lift up to 90 kg. In fact, she is training for a powerlifting competition organised by the Malaysia Powerlifting Alliance. Witness her strength and power yourself in the clip below or in person during the competition on 19th August at Jaya Shopping Centre.
Back to her music, born and raised in Malaysia, the local singer dreams of performing with international acts like Tom Misch and French Kiwi Juice (FKJ).
“I love them with every bit of my heart so if I could work with them, that would be a dream come true,” answers Talitha when asked who she would like to collaborate with. She also added Calvin Harris to the list.
“I think his new stuff is amazing. I love things that you can groove to, you’ll bob your head to, it’s just like you feel the vibe, and you feel happy just listening to it. That’s the kind of vibe that I would love to go for.”
Talitha is moving onto a bigger stage and a larger crowd. Set to perform on the 13th of August at the Good Vibes Festival, the young musician is gearing up for the show with her bandmates. As to her reaction about landing the gig she says, “I was happy to be able to get a slot for Good Vibes. It’s definitely an opportunity that I’ve been longing for, so I’m just glad that I got it.”
The 21-year-old says she has new songs in the works and reveals that she is currently working with Malaysian’s hit rapper, SonaOne, on one of her songs. “I’ve been wanting to work with SonaOne so that’s also another dream,” she tells us.
Fans might get a sneak peek of her new song and can expect more original songs than covers at the music festival.
Fans also should get ready to sing along to the songs during the performance because according to Talitha, that’s one of her fond memories onstage.
“When the crowd knows your song and sings along to it, I’d say that is the best. You made an impression. It’s your song, and people are singing it. That means people know your song. And it feels good that it’s an achievement, when people react, when people chant for the song that is your song and not a cover, which is great because that’s what I want to be known for. My music and not my covers, which I managed to sort of run away from because I started that way. So, I would say it’s a good feeling when your fans know your song, when they sing your song. I think that’s the best.
She sings, she writes her own songs, she plays the guitar, oh and did you read the part where we told you she lifts? There is only good stuff in the store waiting for the ever-hardworking Talitha Tan and we are excited for what’s coming her way!
Catch Talitha live onstage at the Good Vibes Festival on 13th of August at Genting Highlands.
In the meantime, binge-watch Talitha’s videos here and stream her songs on Spotify.