SOULFUL SISTER: Third-year B.A student Nicole Daniella sings her way to the top. Photo: Ilanit Chernick
Third-year B.A student Nicole Davie aka Nicole Daniella, is a neo-soul jazz singer and songwriter who travels between Johannesburg and Cape Town performing her music at the local hang-out spots. This hippie-chic artist is currently working on her EP whilst juggling student life. Her family calls her Boskasie, meaning wild and unruly, which she says refers both to her hair and nature.
Why did you choose music?
Music chose me, I didn’t choose music at all. Like with anything I feel like I was born with that kind of passion inside of me. People know me as a musician now it cultivated itself for the past two years and it’s become an outlet for me. It’s become a place where I can be real, be true. I can write what I feel and sing what I feel and play what I feel, that’s what I love about any creative outlet.
How do you balance being both an artist who’s currently working on her EP and a student?
Recording takes so much out of me, it’s emotionally draining – because it’s coming from a true and real place and your sitting there till the early hours of the next morning and I might have an assignment due the next day, it’s going to be challenging but it’s two things that I love the most and I know that I’m going to find the time to balance.
What do you think makes you a cool kid?
I don’t think I’m a cool kid [laughs]. It’s being myself, being true being real. In terms of style a lot of people sees one being cool because of their style and my style is based on completely what I feel. People call it street style, but my style can change from day-to-day. So being a cool kid is about being you and letting people see your aura your vibe and expressing that to the universe.
Who do you want Witsies to know you as?
First of all I want them to have their own interpretation of me, I don’t want to enforce a kind of ‘being’ to them. But they must see me as someone chilled, cool, focused- focusing on school focusing on what I love – someone real, someone authentic. Someone they can come talk to if they see me sitting alone.
You have a manager what’s that like?
It’s cool first of all because with workloads he’s the first person I would call and say “ok where do I start” because I have assignments and a gig on Saturday and he’ll kind of put it into perspective and direct me. But at the same time it’s tough because now I always have to report to him, I always have to make sure he knows what I’m doing as well.
ART-ACTIVIST: Neo-soul artist Nicole Daniella lends her voice in the fight for climate change. Photo: Palesa Tshandu
The arts came alive in the fight for climate change in Johannesburg’s Newtown last night as part of an initiative calling for African governments to prioritise the issue.
The concert, hosted by 350Africa, involved a number of Witsies who used their artistic talents to contribute to the evening’s line-up.
Second year Wits psychology student and neo-soul artist Nicole Daniella lent her voice to the fight against climate change. Daniella said it was “an honour” to be part of an organisation that advocates for the betterment of the environment.
She said, “we need to have events like this to raise awareness because we aren’t as aware as the northern hemisphere, so we need to become aware because it’s affecting us as its affecting them.
Third year BA student and poet Lebohang Nova’ Masango who performed her popular To Do List for Africa poem said, “the way our socio-economic system is set up is that anything that happens in terms of climate change will hit us the hardest”.
350Africa and Arab world team leader Ferrial Adam said the event was more about awareness than entertainment.
“It’s not so much a celebration as it is about creating awareness and I think there is so much strength in music and poetry that we also want to revive that in our campaigning, so this is only the beginning”, said Adam.
The concert comes just after the organisation staged a march to the Union Buildings in Pretoria on Thursday, to deliver a petition to the President asking him to address the issues of climate issues for South Africans when he meets with global leaders in at the United Nations in New York next Tuesday.
“ Yesterday we handed in a petition to the presidency to say, look we know South Africans is going through these talks, these are our demands, said Adam”.
It’s not so much a celebration as it is about creating awareness and I think there is so much strength in music and poetry that we also want to revive that in our campaigning, so this is only the beginning.”
Adam confirmed that climate change is not at the top of the agenda for African governments, however said that the impact of climate affects change is going to affect the poorest and “it’s something we need to deal with”.
Campaigner at 350Africa Amir Bagheri confirmed that the organisation is due to open the first ever university branch at Wits at the beginning of next year.
“We have already collected over 40 signatures in support of starting the 350Wits group, which is enough to be recognised by the Wits Student Representative Council and admin”, said Bagheri.