Finding Strength in Vulnerability: A Conversation with CHEZ

“CHEZ is my alter ego. It is my escape from the sad days, the bad days, the trauma, haha”

Perth-raised artist CHEZ, the musical alias of Chezni Watson, is back with a breakup anthem that’s anything but sad. ‘LIAR LIAR‘ is a sugar rush of pop-rock, a defiant middle finger to those who’ve done you wrong.

We caught up with CHEZ to chat about her creative process, overcoming heartbreak, and what’s next for the rising star.


Happy: Heya, what are you up to today?

CHEZ: I’m talking to y’all! Recovering from COVID for the 4th time… is that even possible? So, it feels nice to get my mind off of it for a little while, haha.

Happy: Tell us a little about where you are from. What’s the scene like? What do you love about it?

CHEZ: I was born and raised in Perth, WA, and grew up around creatives from a local after-school music academy.

My whole family is non-musical, so growing up, having those influences really helped shape me into the artist I am and still becoming.

Perth has a wide range of talent in all genres. I think the thing I love the most about the music community in my hometown is the people behind the ‘artist’ or ‘band’ are genuinely lovely people – which these days is a little hard to find.

There is a supportive network; everyone wants everyone to win.

Happy: Who are some of your biggest musical influences, and how have they inspired your work?

CHEZ: I grew up listening to a lot of 90’s/00’s R&B, credit to my older brother.

He would burn CDs with all the latest releases from TLC, Destiny’s Child, Christina Aguilera, Anastacia, Nelly Furtado, and JT, and I easily became obsessed with those catchy rhythmic melodies.

The way a melody can set a mood and feed an emotion is the coolest thing.

Still to this day, I listen to these artists and draw so much inspiration from them.

In addition to that, as well as XTINA, my all-time favorite vocalist would have to be Demi Lovato.

Their power, emotion, and authenticity are something I will always admire.

Every studio session I walk into, I channel all of these influences.

Happy: What was the inspiration behind the creation of ‘LIAR LIAR’?

CHEZ: “LIAR LIAR” came from a personal space in which we have all experienced. Utter heartbreak and devastation from finding out your ride or die, whether it be a partner or a best friend – any relationship you have had basically – and finding out they have hurt you behind your back.

Instead of writing a – you hurt me and I am sad about it song – it was important for me in that moment to write it from the perspective of knowing your worth, knowing you deserve better and saying good riddance.

We all need an anthem that makes us feel better about a shitty situation and I hope “LIAR LIAR” can be that for whoever needs it.

Happy: How did you and Reece Lenzo collaborate on writing and producing the song?

CHEZ: I walked into the studio, and Reece was so eager to show me what he had been working on. He hit play, and I was immediately greeted with a child-like choir singing “LA LA LA,” which came to be the intro and hook of the song.

It sparked immediate creativity. As we listened over the loop, we knew how much fun it was and thought it would be cool to meet in with a juxtaposition lyrically and discuss a relatable topic.

Reece’s work ethic and creativity are out of this world. Writing music is a vulnerable space to be in, and we have just always worked so well together.

He challenges my writing and music ability in such a respectful way. The song flowed out of the both of us, bouncing around different melody ideas once we established the concept.

Happy: How do you approach the songwriting process? Do you have any rituals or routines?

CHEZ: Honestly, I don’t… is that bad… haha. It’s funny, but I find the most creative things fly through me when I’m driving (most of the time on the way home from a session – how ironic) or in the shower. I also love rocking up to a session and having a massive debrief and life chat with the creatives I’m working alongside. It really solidifies a deeper understanding between each of us and before we know it – through chatting we have a song idea. It’s authentic and uncalculated, and I love that.

Happy: How does “LIAR LIAR” fit into the larger narrative or themes of your music career?

CHEZ: CHEZ is my alter ego. It is my escape from the sad days, the bad days, the trauma, haha. ‘LIAR LIAR’ will always be a song I look back to when I feel hurt and it can make me assess the situation through a different perspective.

Obviously, we can’t be a bad bitch all the time, and I have found in my songwriting, things are becoming a lot more raw and real, and that is terrifying, but I am very excited to share that side of myself as well.

‘LIAR LIAR’ is the bad bitch side. And it’s important to me that while in reality, I am a very sensitive person – that these songs encapsulate who I want to be, who I strive to be.

Happy: Were there any challenges or surprises you encountered while working on ‘LIAR LIAR’?

CHEZ: The challenge was definitely the hook. Because it was so jam-packed with melody from the “LA LA LA,” we did not want to overshadow it.

Eventually, this one-note type melody that sat right in the pocket fell out, and we knew we had it.

Happy: What’s next for you after the release of ‘LIAR LIAR’?

CHEZ: I just got off tour with Taylor Acorn on her Australian National tour with my band, which was an awesome experience.

Still can’t believe I got to do that. Now, I am gearing up for another single release.

2024 will be seeing a lot more releases from me, and I’m excited to share them with whoever wants to listen to my silly little songs.

Happy: Lastly, what makes you happy?

CHEZ: The people I surround myself with. It has taken a long time to find my squad. The friends and family and team I have around me right now are my biggest cheerleaders and show me a support I haven’t experienced in a long time.

Waking up and knowing I have them and going to bed at night knowing they are right there with me to ride any storm that meets us, I couldn’t be happier.