Jackel is female rapper hailing from New Zealand living in Sydney, Australia who has an immense following with the LGBTQ community and alternative underground scenes.
A loud and proud bisexual, Jackel pulls no punches with her music that encompasses real life issues from drugs, hustling and to personal empowerment.
Be warned, Jackel is not for the faint hearted and she wouldn't have it any other way!
"I find all my fans are extremely different from one another but we all share the common trait of being different, eccentric and not afraid to be ourselves".
Question: How would you describe your music?
Jackel: Catchy hip-hop pop influenced tunes; I love rap but love electronic music as well so wanted to make something that has the lyrics of a rap song but the catchiness of a pop tune.
Question: What motivated the song, Blow?
Jackel: I was going through a super rough period of my life and it seemed like a lot of things were just piling onto of each other. I was medicating my sadness with alcohol and other things instead of seeking help (which I don't recommend). I don't make sad songs, but if you listen to the lyrics you can hear me asking for something to get me by. I think because of the nature of the beat this is looked over a lot. "But all I'm getting is these bills yeah stack it up" is about actual bills, debt etc. not money as some may think. Thankfully I am getting through that rough period of my life and starting to gain a more positive outlook - if anyone is going through a hard period like I did please just know it's okay to ask for help and trying to numb the pain with drugs isn't the way to go. Sending virtual hugs.
Question: What message do you hope your music sends?
Jackel: Every song sends a different message but the whole aspect of what I try to push out is that it's okay to be yourself, don't listen what anyone has to say about you and push to try and achieve your dream whatever it may be. I've been through hell and back and am still standing, still fighting and still striving to be the best me I possibly can be. Making mistakes is okay, as long as you've learnt from them, you get back up and dust yourself off and keep fighting. Do not let anyone ever talk you out of something or make you feel like you're not worthy of that dream.
Question: What inspired your move to Sydney?
Jackel: I was living in New Zealand right up until I was 19, but then met someone who moved to Sydney. It was either stay home and break-up or try to make it work in Sydney. We stayed together for quite some time but ended up deciding to split. I decided to stay in Sydney regardless because I felt I had a better chance of succeeding with my alternative modeling which is what I was doing at the time.
Question: Which is your favourite song to perform live and why?
Jackel: Probably either Hoodlum or Daddy - just because of the drops and how hard the bass goes. I love seeing the audiences' reactions as well.
Question: If you could have anyone, in the world, attend a show, who would it be?
Jackel: Honestly probably just my family members. My mum and my grandma have always been front row for my Christchurch shows in New Zealand which is where I grew up. Regardless of the lyrics they're always there dancing along and so proud of me. I am so grateful to have that kind of support network around me. I really miss them when I preform in other states.
Question: Do you prefer performing live or recording?
Jackel: Performing hands down. To feel that kind of energy from the audience, it's a party. I have been performing on stage ever since I could walk - I grew up dancing tap and jazz. I have always loved the stage, it's honestly the best feeling in the world hearing the music and being able to let go of all the stress in life, even for a split second. When my parents used to take me to the local pub when I was super young, probably around five years old, my mum found me on their little stage with a hat out busking for money dancing to the music that was playing out of the pubs speakers, I made $40. Always been a hustler (laughs).
Question: Which music/artists are you currently listening to?
Jackel: Miley Cyrus new album, always loved Lil Peep, Cuppcakke and I can't go past the Spice Girls; Gaga will always be a top pick too.
Question: What or who was your inspiration to go into the music industry?
Jackel: I went through a really horrible botched surgery in Sydney about seven years ago which nearly killed me. I was laying in hospital for just over a week or so, thinking to myself, I will never be able to model again. I will never be able to dance again. I was in a deep depression which has given me massive PTSD which I still struggle to this day with. I remember I was lying in my bed just in a complete state of hurt and confusion. I am an artist, it's what I do… so if I cannot create anymore, who am I?
I have always loved music but will admit I knew deep down I am not the best of singers. That's when I put my headphones on and decided while I was in hospital I was going to teach myself how to rap. Music saved my soul from staying in that dark place. I was really bad at the start but who isn't bad at something they attempt for the first time right? (laughs)
That came with a lot of online bullying, calling me a failure, to go kill myself and other things I don't even want to repeat - that sent me into an even darker place. But I didn't give up. I couldn't. My brain wouldn't let me. So I kept going, and eventually got my confidence up again, and I can honestly think my voice is exactly where I would like it to be. I can only go up for here!
Question: If you could collaborate with another artist, who would it be?
Jackel: Any other fierce woman I am down for, but honestly probably Miley at this point in time. I think the world of her. What she's been through, what she represents, what she stands for; I think we would get along well and the song would be super organic.
Question: What has been your favourite part of becoming a music artist?
Jackel: The fans. Always the fans. I had a beautiful girl called Christina come up to me after I had performed and told me she was going through a dark period in her life and my music had helped her through it. She then lifted up her neck and showed me a huge deep scar. She attempted to slit her own throat and felt like she had nothing to live for, but got strength from me to keep pushing through. When she told me this I remember crying with her and just holding her. I felt super connected to her. I went home and told my mum as well who ended up having a little sob with me too. I ended up inviting Christina over a couple days later and we gave her a makeover and took some nice pictures of her to help boost her confidence. There is an interview of it online as well that Seven Sharp did of it. I'll never forget it.
Question: Can you share your socials?
Interview by Brooke Hunter