Michelle Nadia is a singer/songwriter who has been writing and performing music both in New Zealand and overseas for many years. Accompanying her extensive nationwide tour is her long-awaited debut album Firefly. Upon researching the album, I discovered that not only is it produced by New Zealand music heavyweight Nic Manders, but Nadiaís studio band includes amazing musicians like Bruce Lynch and Andy Lynch, who, between them, have worked with everyone from Kate Bush to The Feelers. And Michelle Nadia successfully matches and, at times exceeds, the enormous talent sheís lucky enough to count in her company.
The title track Firefly is one of the highlights on the album, possibly because Iím always a sucker for a simple, cutesy song. With lyrics like Ďlightning bug, donít cry/canít you see that youíre a fireflyí, itís hard to claim it is a song filled with lyrical genius and astounding metaphors, but it is one of those songs that has the power to make you smile in spite of yourself.
Perhaps contradictorily, the other stand-out song for me is Stars. This second track is unique compared with many singer/songwriter types that Iím used to listening to, in that it is very rich in instrumental layers. Instead of drowning out her vocal talent which it had the potential to do, the instrumental power actually enhances the strength of her voice. In fact, many of the songs are instrumentally loaded; it is not uncommon to hear organs, harmonicas and a huge array of string instruments accompanying Nadia's endearing vocals.
I definitely liked some of the tracks a lot more than I liked others but that inevitability just comes down to personal preference. In fact, that there is such a variety of sound on this album that can polarize my opinions, while at the same time allowing me to appreciate each song for what it is, is a reflection of Nadiaís versatility as an artist.
Throughout Firefly there are tiny snatches of a more country-folk influenced vocal sound that seems to hint at a possibly unexplored vocal depth. The tone really suits Nadiaís voice and I would be really interested in hearing more of a country-folk influence on future releases.
New Zealand songstress Michelle Nadia has been writing and performing her songs since the age of 18. She has played for audiences up and down her own country as well as further a field in London, Los Angeles, New York, Dublin and Sydney where she majored in vocals at the Australian Institute of Music.
Michelle's song 'Stars' has received radio play in New Zealand and has been used on Air New Zealand's in flight entertainment. Her 'Stars' video plays on Juice TV and she has also made television appearances on TVNZ's Good Morning and Juice TV's 'Live at the Wintergarden'.
Michelle has recently finished recording her debut album 'Firefly' with producer Nic Manders at Bruce Lynch's Boat Shed.