"It's called being real"


If I were to get stuck on an island and had the opportunity to choose anyone to share the ungodly experience with, it would be Aisyah Aziz. Why? Simply because she’s not afraid to rough it up, funny and oh yes – she sings! Humour and a chilled-out spirit are pretty much the type of entertainment (I reckon) being castaways. Although in her case, Aisyah would much prefer Robert Downy Jr. as her castaway partner instead.. but who’s writing the story here?

She had just flown in from her home country Singapore (literally landed an hour before the interview and headed straight to us) when we caught up at Kedai Sebelah, a cosy café/artspace in Kelana Jaya for a chat.

I met ‘Esah’ (as known by her fans) on a shoot for an adventure show in Melaka just a week before and what strikes me a lot about her, apart from the trademark silver locks, is the laid-back and candid character she embodies.

The singer is definitely a person that you want to be friends with. If I were to suddenly break into a running man shuffle, suffice to say that she would not leave me hanging.

She told me that she likes to think herself as the same girl when she first started and I guess that explains why she is not warped into the kind of superstardom that forces her to forge a different persona when seen in public – or during media interviews for that matter. With Aisyah, what you see is what you get.

Aisyah is still relatively new to the industry but being on a household show like Akademi Fantasia (AF) has its perks.

AF is a star-making machine that is quite prominent to audiences across the country (as well as Singapore and Brunei) so it’s no surprise that she maintains a huge following even after being on the show. She was among the crowd favourite and has certainly won the hearts of many that have crossed her path.

Aisyah’s voice is unique to her own and her songs ring a contemporary sound that is more ballad than pop. She told me that she’s been singing since young but notes, “I sucked at it initially.”

“For real.. I remember competing in a sing-off when I was 11 and I didn’t even got a chance to go the next round. Eventually I did get better but that’s mostly because of my father – he’s really into singing and I think I picked that up from him. He loves karaoke – so whenever he has the mic on you know some Broery Marantika, Spring and a lot of ‘rock kapak’ is about to go down,” she shares.

“While I love to join him on his sing-a-long(s), my go-to grooves fall along the lines of jazz (I have all of Ella Fitzgerald’s songs on my playlist) and RNB. That said, I do love Queen (who doesn’t) and ooohhh.. Billy Holiday!” shares Aisyah.

“It’s not a surprise really, to end up in this industry because I have uncles who are also musicians. They were supportive of me and kind of pushed my dad to cultivate my talent further,” she adds.

“I think that having a memorable character is the greatest asset that an artiste could have – it is what makes a ‘Star’,” says the lively singer.

Entertainers like Datuk Siti Nurhaliza and Faizal Tahir are the kind of singers that Aisyah admires. Having met and worked with them before, it helped strengthen her passion towards singing.

“Datuk Siti is like once in a blue moon kind of artiste – she’s a living legend and I admire her character and work ethics. She is humble and makes a point to always acknowledge those around her so what’s not like?” she says.

For those who aren’t really up to date with the entertainment scene, you would probably think that Aisyah is a beauty blogger at first – thanks to her striking hair colour – and since we are on that topic, the singer notes that her beauty choices has certainly gotten her some interesting comments from the public – “the good and the ugly.”
“People say some of the most outrageous things when they see something they aren’t used to. I’ve gotten comments like ‘Eh! macam Kafir’ and have even been told that I won’t fit an event line-up if its organised outside urban areas just cos it’s not appropriate.

“Thank god for the times spent during AF – it kind of taught me how to cope with all the negativity and continue on pursuing what I’m set out to do as a singer. I am, who I am. To be frank, I love my silver hair – it’s me! Hard to imagine parting ways with the colour.”

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