Izaline who? If you’re new to the island you might be asking that question but for many others her music is highly acclaimed. She is the recipient of the 2009 Edison Award (the Dutch equivalent of a Grammy) in the world music category and we caught up with her to find out what makes her heart sing.
CE: Where were you born? Do you come from a musical background?
Izaline: I was born and raised in Curaçao which is a very musical island. Music is everywhere and the radio is my constant companion. We used to sing together in the car, especially during family vacations when we had a long road ahead.
CE: Do you write lyrics and music? What do you sing about? What languages do you sing in?
Izaline: Yes I write lyrics and music. My lyrics are always in Papiamentu the native language of my island and I also sing in Portuguese, English, Spanish and Dutch. As long as the lyric means something to me and I love the melody, I don’t really mind what language the song is in.
CE: Tell us about your musical style.
Izaline: My musical style is best described as world music with a touch of jazz and pop. My music incorporates the typical traditional rhythms from Curaçao and mixes them with jazzy harmonies and melodies. I use such influences as pop, fado, jazz and Brazilian music.
CE: What makes you come alive?
Humor, great food, lovely company, a lingering melody in the air, being in the audience of a great show, surrounding myself with family.
CE: What do you love most about what you do?
Knowing that I can touch someone’s heart with just the sound of my voice and hearing people sing along to stuff I have been slaving on in my little music room. I love being part of the whole musical process. I get to travel to some wonderful places and meet wonderful people. I get to sleep in…well, when my daughter allows it.
CE: What makes Curaçao special to you?
I grew up here. My parents and sister live here so this is where my umbilical cord will lie forever. There is something special about this small island with so many foreign influences but with such a strong identity all of its own.
CE: What advice would you give to aspiring singers?
Work your butt off. Surround yourself with people you like and who are better than you. Learn from them. Be professional, fair, kind and loyal. Be your fabulous self!
CE: Who are your 3 favorite artists?
- Elis Regina (Brasil)
- Sara Tavares (Capevert/Portugal)
- Oswin “Chin” Behilia (Curaçao)
If CE were to quote a lyric from one of your songs in this article which verse would you choose?
Izaline: From Speransa:
Speransa ke ta bo guia, konfiabel i kapas
Bo fuente di energia ku no ta kaba mas
“Hope wants to be your guide, reliable and able,
A source of energy that never dries.”