By Arne Sjostedt
Inspired to pursue music and the arts by a serendipitous encounter with Lady Gaga, vibrant and enigmatic, Apollo Blue is a mysterious and exciting artist. The Jester caught up with Apollo Blue to learn more about him, and his debut single Moonchild.
How old are you? I’m 280 months along. Also known as 23!
You have a unique look and striking style, where do you draw your inspiration from?
Thank you! I’ve always had a fascination with how we can express ourselves through style and fashion. Before I had the confidence to verbalise my queer identity, glamour and fashion was my way of doing so. I’m inspired by a lot of 60s and 70s fashion, queer culture, editorial looks, fashion houses like Versace and Dior, and pop icons Lady Gaga and Marina and The Diamonds.
Talk about your non musical icons? Maya Angelou is a really special icon for me. Her philosophy, poetry and activism has inspired me for years. I’m currently reading her 6th autobiography, whenever I need to find peace or inspiration, I read some Maya Angelou.
What about the musical ones? Nina Simone, Lady Gaga, The Rolling Stones, Regina Spektor and Etta James have taught me so much about what it means to be an artist. I learnt how to sing by belting out Etta James songs hours on end trying to match her pitch and intensity. Each of these icons created their own unique sound and artistic world, and in doing so inspired me to path my own unique musical lane.
Can you profile your fan base? I really haven’t been able to, they’re too diverse, which I love! I have millennials of all genders who come to my shows and love the glamour, Gen X fans who respond to the grunginess, and Boomers who hear similarities to Queen and Bowie! (massive compliment). I’ve seen an overwhelming response in Brooklyn in the U.S and São Paulo, Brazil since releasing Moonchild which has blown my mind.
Use three words to describe your sound. Anthemic, ethereal, empowering.
What is the story behind your latest single? Moonchild was written in the middle of the night after I had left a grungy gig and was strutting home in the rain through wintry Melbourne with my favourite black boots and silver glitter pants on. I felt free and powerful still reeling from the excitement of the nightlife. I noticed an on-looker from their balcony and wondered who they were and what they thought of me: a mysterious platinum blonde racing through a storm in the middle of the night. I developed this into an ominous character, The Moonchild, who only emerges at night and lives off of rain clouds and stormy skies. I had a rock energy coursing through my veins and I couldn’t wait to get home and transform that feeling and fantasy world into music. The song was written before I could even reach the keyboard.
What is your approach to song writing? My piano is usually my pen, it’s often the starting point that inspires the lyrics, feeling and melody. However, it changes with every song for me! Just like childbirth no two songs are born the same! Sometimes a concept will hit me at 2am and I’ll write out all the lyrics on my phone, mumble some voice notes and then go to the piano the next day to bring it to life.
Where do you see yourself in five years? Playing shows in Paris, being an empowering voice for minorities and making art across more mediums like film, television and poetry.
Tell us about your favourite live show moment Ooh there’s so many! The first one that comes to mind is helping a drag queen with their corset backstage seconds before I was going onstage to sing. They were hosting the night and changing outfits between their sets but needed some assistance so I had to help a sister out! Honestly, being surrounded by other queer performers lifts me up and makes me feel right at home.
Where can people find out about you and keep in touch with what you are up to I’m everywhere, a social media monster now! Apollo Blue on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube & TikTok!