With a voice that is nothing short of amazing, Amba Shepherd takes the electronic dance music world to new heights. Working alongside with some of the most well known producers in the industry, like Ferry Corsten and Porter Robinson to name a few, Amba has been able to continually transform the dance music world. With hit tracks like “Walk on Air“, “Vandalism” and so many more, this singer and songwriter is making her name known and letting others be aware that she is here to stay.
AscenDance Radio had a chance to meet up with Amba to talk about her life as a dance music artist and here is what she had to say:
Amba Shepherd Interview:
Dayanna Guerrero: We’re sitting here with one of the most talented songwriters, producers and one of my personal favorite vocalists, Amba Shepherd. So Amba, your most recent track with Ferry Corsten “Walk on Air” was recently released and it has had amazing feedback. How did this collaboration come about?
Amba Shepherd: thatâ€™s a good question. Actually I wrote the song with David Skains, who is â€œPierre in the Airâ€. Heâ€™s another Australian; a producer from Brisbane and we wrote that track together. He had written like a bed and we were shopping it around to a few labels in Australia as well and he sent it over to Flash Over and few other people and Flash Over really loved it. There was quite a lot of interest in the song in its early stage. Anyway so Flash Over they just loved the song and we were like a â€œhey look will be involved with youâ€ and basically Ferry then came on board and said “guys I really love this song I would love to sort of collaborate on the production with you”.
Dayanna Guerrero: Thatâ€™s awesome!
Amba Shepherd: Which is amazing! He then took all the stems and re-created the production side of things and took it to the next level, made it into the jewel of the track that it is now and thatâ€™s really how that happened. It was kind of a really simple process we havenâ€™t met or anything like that; we havenâ€™t been in the studio together. He sent a really nice e-mail to both of us on how he loved the track and how inspiring it was. That was pretty cool to get that from him and just nice feedback. He did it really quickly; it was sort of a 24 hour kind of deal because he was touring like running around so the schedule was really intense. Thatâ€™s basically how it came about.
Dayanna Guerrero: In a previous interview, you had said that youâ€™ve always had a soft spot for dance music and to be honest, we think dance music has a really soft spot for you as well. What is it about Dance Music that draws you to it?
Amba Shepherd: Thatâ€™s a really good question. So Iâ€™ve written pop, pop rock, and sort of other genre of music and I think what I really love about dance music is the fact that itâ€™s not so confined by structure, itâ€™s not formulaic. I mean it has obvious sections that have to happen, drops and then build ups, things like that – but it allows me to be really creative and I like the kind of collaborative nature and I love the fast pace. Tracks come out really quickly, and not all labels are very fast, but generally speaking you can be working on something with someone and feel like at the moment Iâ€™m sort of part of a movement, changing sound if that makes sense. So itâ€™s really exciting I think thatâ€™s why I like it.
Dayanna Guerrero: AscenDance Radio has sort of a â€œsoft spotâ€ for your music and vocals. We currently play a lot of your songs and to us you have an ear pleasing voice. How would you describe your sound and is there any particular track you’ve worked on that is your favorite?
Amba Shepherd: My sound..I guess I donâ€™t really know how I would describe it.
Dayanna Guerrero: Besides amazing
Amba Shepherd: Besides amazing (laughs), I guess I have a breathy kind of a tone, I really donâ€™t know how to describe the other than that. Itâ€™s just the voice that Iâ€™ve always had. And what was the other question? Oh which is my favorite? Thatâ€™s really hard too because Iâ€™m quite attached to all of them in some way or another. I just did one with QuantumDNB over in the UK on ThreeSixZero and itâ€™s called â€œSuperhumanâ€ and itâ€™s a dubstep track with Virtual Riot and Iâ€™ve really, really love that one. Titchimoto did this chill out remix, this remix kind of blew my mind and it’s sort of my favorite, at the moment. But you know tomorrow it could be the Porter track or you know..
Dayanna Guerrero: Speaking of that, your track with Porter Robinson, â€œVandalismâ€ has been at the top of many charts and it just recently hit #6 on the latest DMC Buzz Chart. How did this song come about and how is it that you make getting vandalized sound so good?
Amba Shepherd: Do I? Awesome! Okay cool. Yeah well thatâ€™s another interesting collaboration. I had just gotten back from a riding trip to Stockholm and literally got off the plane and got a Tweet from Porter. He was in Sydney and he was like â€œHey I really love your track â€œBlack & Whiteâ€ (that I had released in Spain). â€œDo you want to come down to my gig?â€. I actually didnâ€™t get the message until the day after because I had really bad jet lag and was fast asleep when he sent it to me, which is a shame because I missed out on meeting him. So I was home for about 2-2 Â½ weeks before I went away again and a couple days later that week I got an e-mail from his management saying hey Porter would love for you to work on his EP it’s coming out in two or three weeks or something like that, what can you do? And it was quite stressful because I had just finished this other trip and I had like 20 songs to demo for that trip and everyone is like can we have it yesterday? So I was like okay and they sent me one of the tracks on the EP and then actually took it back and said do you have any a capellas? And I said look, I have this one a capella, and I had actually called it â€œGraffitiâ€ because one of the lines in it is graffiti. So I sent that over to him, then 24 hours later I get this track back and it was just like everyoneâ€™s calling and everyoneâ€™s pretty pumped and vibed and it was like the track sounds amazing. Then I went away and the track came out, the EP came out and it did really. Itâ€™s basically how that kind of happened.
Amba Shepherd: Well actually Kevin is based in Ireland so I havenâ€™t him either and we were actually introduced by our label in Australia called Central Station. They just sent me the track, they actually sent me the track kind of May or March sort of early last year, I just loved it straight away and I wrote that straight away and it took them a while to get all them remixes done.
Dayanna Guerrero: Itâ€™s a process
Amba Shepherd: Yeah exactly
Dayanna Guerrero: Switching gears a bit, anyone following you on your social media outlets is sometimes surprised by the uplifting quotes and cute little things you find and share with your fans. With that said, what would be one quote that you try to live by on a daily basis?
Amba Shepherd: Itâ€™s kind of a lot but I think my favorite one is â€œTo live a creative life, we must lose our fear of being wrongâ€ (Joseph Chilton) and that is something that when I read that the first time it really resonated with me. I think like as a writer or performer youâ€™re in the moment and you have to feel like you can be able to express yourself and take a risk ,without making mistakes and feel if you mess up itâ€™s just all part of the journey kind of thing. I know it sounds kind of cheesy, but itâ€™s really important to feel that kind of freedom is not always a given you not always born with that.
Dayanna Guerrero: Youâ€™ve worked with some heavy hitters of the dance music scene, is there anyone you havenâ€™t worked with yet but would like to?
Amba Shepherd: That is such a hard question thereâ€™s so many people that I would love to work with.
Dayanna Guerrero: List them all..
Amba Shepherd: I kind of donâ€™t know if I really necessarily want to say because I like the fact that my process is really organic itâ€™s sort of like people come to me. I meet people through people, rather than it be sort of projecting that I desperately want to work. Not desperately, but you know what I mean? I kind of just like that itâ€™s an organic evolution and I donâ€™t necessarily knows what exciting producer is coming my way next. But thereâ€™s a lot of producers I love obviously.
Dayanna Guerrero: As the opportunity presents itself..
Amba Shepherd: Exactly.
Dayanna Guerrero: In that regard, are there any upcoming projects, collaborations or maybe a debut solo album that will be coming out soon?
Amba Shepherd: Yes, lots and lots of stuff coming out but no solo stuff just yet. I have actually been approached by quite a few labels to do solo releases but I havenâ€™t felt really ready to do that for a while and I havenâ€™t necessarily found the right producer to work with to do that. Itâ€™s probably going to happen at some point I think. Otherwise, collaboration wise, I have a track coming out on Be Yourself Music, which is based in Holland with an Australian producer Nick Galea and Iâ€™m not sure when thatâ€™s coming out. Also OWSLA, you never know quite how to say it, but they are looking into doing a remix package for â€œVandalismâ€, so thatâ€™s cool. I have also been working on a collaboration with Lazy Rich and Hirshee.
Dayanna Guerrero: Something to look forward two well Amba thank you so much and we wish you all of the best.
Amba Shepherd: Thank you, thanks so much for your support. Itâ€™s just really appreciated and all of your messages and everything like that. Just the interaction and the feedback is amazing it’s really great to have so much support, I really appreciate it.
Dayanna Guerrero: No problem, thank you.
Amba Shepherd: Thanks.