Australian gothic songstress Tia Tamora has been busy sewing a musical patchwork of dark pop, baroque pop, and dream folk with her first two singles.
Born and raised on Victoria’s Peninsula, Tia Tamora is creating a beautifully unique brand of Australian gothic from her bedroom, inspired by an array of films, and artists like Nick Cave, Ethel Cain, Sevdaliza, and Agnes Obel.
Tia began to garner a fair bit of attention with her debut single, Picnic, inspired by the film Picnic at Hanging Rock. That attention has been well and truely validated by her follow-up track, the self-described “anthem for the unwell,” SICK.
We snapped up the chance to chat with Tia about the new single, her relationship with an ex-partner that inspired the song, and some of her favourite films.
HAPPY: First of all, congratulations on your release and of course, happy birthday! You released your most recent single SICK on your 21st birthday. Why did you choose your birthday as the release date?
TIA: Thank you! We originally had the 13th of May as it was on a Friday… Spooky… Convenient right?! But it came down to timing and we had to pick a later date. I suppose it was a fun way to celebrate the new era!
HAPPY: You mentioned your inspirations included Ethel Cain, Sevdaliza, Nick Cave, and Agnes Obel. I can totally hear this lot of legends in your songwriting but I’d love to ask how you feel about Lana Del Ray? Please tell me I’m not the only one to have heard the resemblance.
TIA: Yes, she’s definitely an inspiration of mine. I admire a strong female presence in the music industry and really connect with her dark, nostalgic romance.
HAPPY: As an independent artist, what has it been like releasing with AWAL?
TIA: They kind of approach distribution and label services in a fresh way that suits someone like me who has a strong vision of who I am artistically – AWAL back that and partner with it in a really supportive way.
HAPPY: You seem to have a rather unique and identifiable style and I feel like you’ve stepped out of it a little for this track, can you tell me about the top hat and clown make-up that you’re sporting for the SICK single cover?
TIA: My visual style would best be described as Australian Gothic and with my debut single Picnic, it really corresponded with that theme. However I definitely wanted to switch it up a little for my next single and embrace SICK. It’s all about being a little bit cray-cray and what’s more cooky than a clown? I adore and collect anything vintage and purchased the 1920s top hat from an antique store. I thought it was a fun way of showcasing the new song in all its unsettling nature.
HAPPY: You said that you wrote SICK about a time when you were consumed with a guy you were seeing but, of course, you took it to extremes. Can I ask, if you’re still in contact with said guy, does he know the song is about him? If so, how does he feel about it?
TIA: He does not know it’s about him and he shall not find out! HA! I have no idea if he’s listened to it. It will probs freak him out… that usually happens when I write music about people.
HAPPY: I get the feeling from your music and lyrics that you’re quite the movie buff. What are your top 5 movies of all time?
TIA: I do love a good film. Naturally I gravitate towards the whimsical ones… In no particular order my top 5 are; Once Upon A Time In Hollywood, Midnight In Paris, Becoming Jane, Suite Française, and Water For Elephants.
HAPPY: This is only your second single but you’re set to release an EP later this year. What can you tell us about the EP?
TIA: I’m really excited about releasing more music soon, I’m sitting pretty comfortable in my music right now. Picnic and SICK are just a couple of the pieces to my puzzle. If all goes to plan I’ll be releasing another single end of July and my debut EP around the end of September.
HAPPY: Have you started playing live shows with your new music and is it too early to ask if you have a tour on the cards?
TIA: I will start playing live shows in support of my EP!
SICK is out now and available on all streaming platforms. Keep an eye out for Tia’s upcoming tour dates via her Instagram page.
Interview by Chloe Maddren.