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Music / July 21, 2022

Premiere: Célia Tiab is leaning into discomfort on ‘It’s Not Always Easy’

Célia Tiab via Soft Boy Records
Music / July 21, 2022

Premiere: Célia Tiab is leaning into discomfort on ‘It’s Not Always Easy’

Words: Dylan Murphy

Ahead of the release of her debut EP Cécé, we’ve got the exclusive premiere of ‘It’s Not Always Easy’ and Célia Tiab talked to us about the inspiration behind track.

Being brave isn’t about not being afraid; it’s feeling the fear and doing it anyway. French-born, Belfast-based singer Célia Tiab is leaning into this discomfort on ‘It’s Not Always Easy’. Written in an attempt to overcome her own insecurities, the track has the kind of dreamy tones that have you feeling nostalgic for experiences you never had. Having been raised on a diet of soul, jazz and RnB, it comes as no surprise that the same threads are present in ‘It’s Not Always Easy’. In the past Célia has collaborated with Brién of Soft Boy Records on ‘Can I Lie With U’ in 2018 and more recently teamed up again with the producer for ‘BIBIBI’. Elsewhere, Tiab worked with Kojaque across his debut album Town’s Dead and on Gaptoof’s ‘Forget U’.

Ahead of its official release tomorrow as part of her debut EP Cécé, we’ve got the exclusive premiere of the track. Célia chatted to us about how the single and EP came together.

How did the song come about?

Kean [Kavanagh] had asked me to open for him at a London show. I was really insecure at how many songs I had written and really pushed myself to write more 2 weeks before the gig. ‘It’s Not Always Easy’ was in a way inspired by how I felt, it was really difficult to pull these songs out of me after 2 years of almost not writing at all. It is also a nod to the song ‘Call’ by Andy Shauf (an artist I’ve been listening to on repeat) – one of the lines in the song is ‘it’s not always easy, knowing what to do’ – which just felt so simple and true.

I wanted to write an Andy Shauf kind of A section and a Dijon kind of B section. Pete and I played the song acoustically live and we only recorded it and produced it shortly before the deadline for the EP!! We recorded the vocals and guitar first as I had to leave for France, and then Pete produced it while I was away. I was so positively shocked when I heard it for the first time, I was screaming. He just knew exactly what I really wanted even though I didn’t even know I wanted this. It was crazy!

Who worked alongside you on the project?

I believe a lot of people indirectly collaborated on the project, as I was just inspired by life experiences. In that sense, all my family and friends, the artists I’ve been listening to all my life have been a huge part of it.

Directly though, there is a team of awesome people behind me – Brién, my partner in crime, has made this project possible! He produced, mixed and mastered the whole project, and wrote some parts and arrangements. He just brought the songs to another level!

My good friend Ben Flavelle-Cobain brought his unique touch on ‘Bibibi‘ by writing & performing beautiful bass parts for it! It made the song take another dimension.

Bénen Dillon made the Creamy video in such short notice and knew exactly what to do to make it look exactly like I wanted to!

The Soft Boy Records crew – Stephen Byrne, Kean Kavanagh and Kojaque are supporting me every step of the way and by wanting to release it, made me gain confidence and I feel so lucky to have had this platform to deliver this first project. 

Also, Brién, Ben and a Derry based drummer called Andrew are joining me for the release party on the 31st. I’m so excited for this first full band show! I’m so grateful for my good friend Graham [Yenkee] who so kindly offered to support for us. This all feels like a dream come true!

Listen to ‘It’s Not Always Easy’ below:

Previous Premiere: Oliveyolive is finding his way on ‘Growing Pains’.