Dineo is a singer and songwriter from Leeds, United Kingdom. This young and vibrant artist has spent the last few years building her fan base and continuing to work on her musical education. She brings a fresh perspective on pop and country music originating from her home country of South Africa. Currently, Dineo is working on her debut EP release which will contain her original songs. She spent the past three years writing music, and her debut EP is about sharing that experience, finding your own strength and defining who you are regardless of anyone else’s opinions. Dineo is excited to share her music with her fans. You can sign up to her email list so you don’t miss a moment of her musical journey!
“I am Here” is a new single and title track from Dineo’s recently released EP. The listener is immediately struck with an immensely beautiful sound, with piano and vocals starting the song off. The vocals themselves are sultry, soothing and delivered with a confidence and maturity not always found in young artists. Strings help to round out the arrangement, and provide a great foundation on which the vocals are showcased. The backup vocal harmonies, however, are what really take this arrangement to the next level, adding a beautiful and breathtaking richness to an already gorgeous song. Dineo’s variety of colors and emotions in her vocals is impressive, as is her vocal range and confident delivery. The themes in this song are melancholic, but there is a sense of hope that radiates throughout. Her use of dynamics, vocal harmonies, and a simple but effective arrangement all come together wonderfully, making “I am Here” an instant fan favorite that you’ll want to stick on repeat. We highly recommend you check this single and the rest of Dineo’s debut EP out!
Listen to " I am Here" here and get to know more about Dineo below!
Hey, thanks for chatting with us! First of all, would you mind describing a bit about your background and how you first got involved with music and songwriting?
I’m originally from South Africa and I moved here at the young age of 15 which is when I discovered I loved music but did not think I was confident enough. I still picked up a guitar and taught myself how to play. When I turned 18, I knew I couldn’t keep running away from what I was meant to do. Coming from a culture that does not think a career in the arts is fruitful I battled with owning who I was as an artist because I didn’t want to disappoint my family. I decided to go to university and study music because I had the tools I needed, I just didn’t know how to use them. As A young impressionable artist I met people whom I thought were going to give me a great opportunity, but they just wanted to exploit my creativity and change everything about me.I knew this was not how I wanted to be, so I walked away from that endeavor with my head held high because if I was going to be in the music industry, I was going to do it as who I am not someone, they wanted to make me.This knocked my confidence and I gave up on myself and doing music, but I was still writing music I just didn’t perform. It took me a long time to get my confidence back as an artist. When I turned 24, I was constantly writing music and I knew I couldn’t keep the music to myself, so I decided to do an EP. The Title I Am Here steams from everything I’ve overcome, and I am still here.
As a native of Leeds, how would you describe the overall music scene there?
The music scene in Leeds I would say is open, as a country/pop artist it could be better, but I feel like Leeds reminds me of New York City where you can find a place to fit in where ever you are from. There are a lot of great venues like the Oporto which is where I had my EP launch party. The Brudenell social and many more. There’s such a wide variety there is a scene for everyone.
Can you walk us through a bit of what your writing process is like? Specifically, I’d love to know your process in coming up with all of the beautiful vocal harmonies in “I am Here”.
I Am Here was co-written with a talented friend of mine and I was fascinated by how well our voices blended together so I thought this would be such a great experiment but when we were recording the song, I did all the harmonies because it felt like that’s where the song needed to go. The right feel was important to me. When recording I could anticipate every harmony. Lyrically I was in tears most of the writing process because this song meant so much to me, I had been carrying these words with me for such a long time it was about time I put them in a song for the world to hear, because they had the power to help somebody get through a tough time like I was. I grew up listening to old jazz music because my mother is a huge fan of Frank Sinatra and Nate King Cole, but she also listened to Dolly Parton and Nina Simone and Ella Fitzgerald and many more amazing artists.
Who would you say your biggest artistic influences are?
I have many influences especially modern ones like Beyoncé, Michael Jackson, Tina Turner, Carrie Underwood, Dan and Shay and many others who have inspired me. I didn’t understand representation when I was younger which especially now in the type of world we live in, I think it’s important to teach young children. There aren’t many women of color who are female country artists and I think it would be amazing to be seen as such, to teach young women of color who are learning about the world that you can be whatever you want to be and that’s okay. It’s up to you to decide not the rest of the world.
What can we hope to see from you in the future?
My Dream is to be performing alongside huge artists such as Carrie Underwood, Dan and Shay, and many other artists. I will continue to work hard and never stop dreaming big to get to that goal. I’m hoping to keep writing and keep creating awesome music that is true to who I am as an artist.
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