An Interview with London 2019 Finalist Tenacity

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To those who might not be familiar with you or your work, could you tell us a little more about you and your music?

My name is Ula Wodarz ‘Tenacity’. I’m an 18-year-old musician based in South London. I come from Poland and I only moved to London a year and a half ago to study at the BRIT School in Croydon. I’m a singer and accompany myself on guitar and piano. I’ve been performing at small music events and festivals in London for the past year, at first as a solo artist but recently moving more towards playing with a band. I’d say my music is a mixture of different genres, probably something between pop/soft rock with some elements of jazz (I’ve been trained in jazz vocals for the past four years.) Last summer, I released an EP called ‘Sounds and Vibes’ so please check it out if you’d like to hear some of my songs.


There's a greater purpose driving The Coffee Music Project. What does Project Waterfall mean to you?

The idea of a competition which both supports emerging artists and provides help to people who most need it is absolutely wonderful. I am amazed by what people involved in Project Waterfall do and I’m glad that in my own way I can help to raise money for this fantastic charity.


When and why did you decide to venture into music?

To be honest, I can’t even remember. I think music’s been inside me since I was born. I started my music training at a young age. I began learning how to play the piano at the age of five, took up the guitar at the age of twelve and I’ve sung all my life under the eye of different voice teachers. I enrolled in a public second degree music school in Poland when I was fourteen then moved to London at sixteen. I am now about to complete my two year Music course at the BRIT School.


What do you think are the biggest challenges facing emerging musicians?

Being original and bringing something completely different and fresh to the table. I think it is quite challenging because now the world has already heard so much great music that it is hard to make yourself stand out.


As a musician, what's the best piece of advice you have been given? 

Making music is like cooking a soup. Stay open-minded, share your feelings with the audience but also with other musicians, collaborate with others and blend different experiences, stories, and emotions into one.


Name a few of your favourite acts right now..

Radiohead, Lianne La Havas, Portishead, Laura Mvula.


How did you find writing your London song for this competition?

My London song is actually a piece I had already written before taking part in the competition. I only moved to London quite recently and I found everything about it so inspiring that I could say more than one of my songs has got some London influence in it.

This track in particular to me is an embodiment of this amazing city. It’s called Sounds and Vibes and it’s about my experience of starting a new life in a brand new, exciting environment.


What should we expect from your set on 1st May?

Two awesome songs performed by me and my two lovely friends who will join me on the bass and the cajon.

Rebecca Hodgson