Interview: Nina Nesbitt

by Catriona Beck
Taylor Magazine Minimalist guide to life

With a new single that we can’t stop listening to, as well as a new album coming out and some big (BIG) things coming up, we wanted to speak to Nina Nesbitt and find out more about her music and what she’s working on! The Scottish beauty is smashing the singer-songwriter scene and we absolutely love her attitude towards the industry she’s in – taking it easy, doing it because she loves it and if people like her music, then that’s just an added bonus.

Nina immediately struck us as an extremely modest, down to earth and ambitious lady… a total inspiration to any young woman who wants to make it in the music industry. Not only that, she has some great advice on life in general… plain and simple.

I think it’s good not to put too much pressure on yourself, because that can have a negative impact.”- Nina Nesbitt

Taylor Magazine: Tell us what you’re up to at the moment!

Nina Nesbitt: So, I just put out the intro track for my album – it’s done a lot better than we all expected, so I’m really happy with that. I put out the first single last Friday, which is called ‘The Best You Had’ and I’ve also got some tour dates coming up. Plus, I’m finishing up recording the album…

Taylor Magazine: How have you found the experience. Has it been smooth sailing or a lot of work?

Nina Nesbitt: It’s actually been totally chilled putting the music out. I was freaking out about everything last time, so I’ve split my time between writing for others and also doing the whole artist thing. That’s definitely helped me to not get really anxious about everything.

I treat the artist thing as my passion project, something that I love doing rather than thinking: ‘It needs to work!’ I think it’s more effective when you put music out and have the attitude of, ‘If people like it, then they like it.’ I’d loooove my work to be amazingly successful but I think it’s good to not put too much pressure on yourself because that can also have a negative impact.

Taylor Magazine: How did you start your musical journey? When did you know you wanted to pursue it as a career?

Nina Nesbitt: I’ve always loved singing since I was born. I started writing short stories when I was about six or seven, which were like 5 page books. At the time I thought was an actual novel! I picked up the piano (well, Yamaha keyboard) at age 10 and then started putting those stories to music. As I got older, I started putting YouTube covers up and built a fan base that way. Then from there, I went on tour with some artists and got signed to Island and eventually put out an album. I’ve been really lucky.

Taylor Magazine: When you first realised that you were rising to fame, how did it feel?

Nina Nesbitt: The thing is, I can walk about in public absolutely fine – personally, I don’t think I’m famous. A lot of people know my music and some people look into it further and get to know me, but I feel like I’m at a really lucky level. I’m not at the level where I can’t go out in the street or do things or anything I say gets twisted. I’m at a lovely place where I have an amazing fan-base and I get recognised for my music.

Taylor Magazine: And I guess getting recognised for your music is exactly what you want?

Nina Nesbitt: Yes, absolutely! I’ve never wanted to be on the front page of the papers.

Taylor Magazine: We know that you’ve done a bit of modelling as part of your career as well. What part of that industry did you enjoy the most?

Nina Nesbitt: I just did it because I needed to earn some money while I was at school. I like fashion and I guess music and fashion go hand in hand. I love getting dressed up for stage so I love that aspect of it as well, but it’s not something I would want to do full-time. As an artist, you have the ability to be creative at photoshoots, whereas if you’re just a model, it’s harder to get your personality across.

Taylor Magazine: What advice would you give to someone who wanted to get into music and launch their career within this industry? 

Nina Nesbitt: I would say do everything you can at first – do the open mic nights, send your stuff to people you like and just get yourself out there. Try and find something that sets you apart from other people – find your unique thing. There are so many people trying to do music at the moment, so really try and find your niche. Once you get going, don’t be afraid to say no to things. Trying to make yourself into a brand and creating what you want to be is really important – don’t say yes to everything.

Taylor Magazine: That’s a good point – when you’re first starting out you must have the urge to say yes to everything, but in reality that might not actually be a good thing?

Nina Nesbitt: Exactly. Do things when you think you’re ready for them, because sometimes you only ever get one shot at it.

Taylor Magazine: As a singer/songwriter, where does your inspiration come from?

Nina Nesbitt: The singles that I’ve written for this album have literally just been whatever comes out. I don’t know how, it’s like some sort of subconscious trance that I go into and they write themselves! Then once it’s written, I’m like: ‘Oh…how did that happen?!’ Most of the time it begins with a lyric idea. Anything that has become a single has always started with a lyric idea, which is usually from real life or my friends’ lives.

Photo Credit | Alex Lake

Taylor Magazine: With your career, what has been the most memorable experience as a musician?

Nina NesbittProbably getting to travel to places like Hong Kong. I wouldn’t have been able to go there otherwise, if I wasn’t doing what I do now. Getting to see so many different cultures and places on the other side of the world has been the most exciting thing for me.

Taylor Magazine: At Taylor Magazine, we love to find out what people do to relax and do to become the best version of themselves. When you have time to yourself, how do you spend it?

Nina Nesbitt: I like to go to the gym. I never used to exercise but now I’m making a conscious effort to actually exercise and keep myself healthy. I do quite a bit of weightlifting which I find relaxing, and I also do some meditation every now and then. Oh… I also look after dogs!

“I’m making a conscious effort to actually exercise during this second album artist phase to look after myself and be as positive as I can be. Being an artist is such an emotional rollercoaster – you’re putting yourself out there, which is quite a scary thing.”

Taylor Magazine: Looking after dogs… that’s the best thing we’ve heard all day.

Nina Nesbitt: I’m on this app called ‘Borrow My Doggy’ and you basically look after people’s dogs if they need you to!

Taylor Magazine: I think we need to download this app…

Nina Nesbitt: Yeah, you need to get on it! I’ve just bought my very own Pomeranian as well, which is coming in two weeks. He’s going to be called Timmy!

Taylor Magazine: Other than music… (and dogs), what other interests and hobbies do you have?

Nina Nesbitt: I like to do relaxing things, like going out for walks and things, especially when I’m not doing music because it’s such a central thing to me.

Taylor Magazine: What should we look out for from you in the next few months? What have you got planned that’s going to be big?

Nina Nesbitt: I’ve got a song coming out on Jessie Ware’s new album, which is coming out in a few months. She’s one of my favourite artists – we did a session last year so I’m really excited for it coming out! She’s so wonderful. I’m hoping to do a big tour next year as well, get the album out, keep writing and see what happens. Everything is so unpredictable in this industry, so I’m just living for the next six months. Let’s see what happens!

Check out Nina’s newest single, ‘The Best You Had’ as well as her Instagram, Twitter and Facebook for what she’s getting up to!

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