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Q+A With Queency

Perth-based singer-songwriter Queency, aka Quentin Thony, is back bustling with bold, suave and sinfully smooth retro pop tinged with modernity, with a brand new single Purple Diamonds officially out today. A delectable sneak peek into Queency’s impending new EP of the same name dropped on Thursday November 24, Purple Diamonds is pure sonic joy that’ll bubble the soul and bewitch the ears with polished and effortless ease. We caught up with Queency for a quick Q+A

Hi, thanks for taking the time to chat with Hear 2 Zen, what have you been up to today?

It’s a Tuesday, so work fam… BUT! I’m going to see Allen Stone at the Astor Theatre tonight and I PUMPED AF for it! 😀

Tell us about yourself, how long have you been performing/creating music for? 

I have a very clear childhood memory of watching the music video of “Wannabe” by the Spice Girls and telling myself, “That’s I wanna do” and that feeling never went away! I started making music with my cousin who had a bedroom studio in our early teens on Reunion Island, and then started writing songs on my keys in my late teens after a break-up… Pretty cliché… But music started professionally with me joining Soukouss Internationale as their front guy seven years ago, which introduced me to Perth music industry and later saw me start my personal project as Queency. I have been performing at every occasion I’ve had throughout my life. I’ve been an absolute stage whore since the crib, my family will eyeroll and concur….

Who are your greatest inspirations?  Why?

Well the holy trinity of course! AKA Whitney Houston, Prince and Stevie Wonder, the best musicians/singers that ever lived. I am an absolute sucker for a great vocalist and I aspire to become just as good. It’s funny, with music like any other skill you can acquire in a lifetime, the more you know, the more you know you don’t know! Technique-wise, singing will always be a work in progress, but I guess my influences in songwriting come from lived experiences, relationships with people, but also the relationship I have with myself. But look, to put it simply great musos in the like of Prince, Stevie Wonder and my number one Whitney Houston have inspired me to make music, and continue to inspire me to create and evolve.

How do you create music? Are you lyrics/story driven, or does the music/melody come first?  Explain your process.

I’m an unwavering believer that having a strong melody and a solid hook is the key to writing a good song. So I guess I tend to put the melody at the forefront of the creative process. I can be inspired by a run I’ve heard a singer do, a song I’ve heard, or just a riff my guitarist throws during a live performance. I sometimes wake up in the middle of the night because I dreamt of a melody and I don’t wanna forget it! Haha! But at times, lyrics come first when the intent is to get something out. I feel like making music is selfish because it is my way to reach catharsis and I sometimes use songwriting as a form of therapy. It’s also generous because I get to share it with people and they hopefully get to feel something too. In most cases I’m driven by intense experiences I have gone through in life. I wrote songs about bad break-ups (don’t we all?), about my dad leaving and breaking my mum’s heart, about a friendship ending in rage, but also about falling in love, and having amazing sex! 

What has been your greatest challenge so far in performing/creating music?

Performing is never an issue, I absolutely live for the stage (remember? Absolute stagewhore here haha). But in creating music, I guess the challenge is time and resources. Being an independent artist I have to fund all my projects and have to work a full time job to be able to do so. Eventually the plan is for me to make music full time, but that’s still a work in progress.

Tell us about your new release Purple Diamonds, how did it come about?

I wanted to pay homage to the late Prince, and what better way to write a song about having the best sex of your life? Purple Diamonds is a shameless synth heavy and vocally stacked retro pop track modernised to 21st century’s flavours. It’s definitely an ode to 80s pop, but I wanted it to be seasoned to the taste of today! And I like it extra spicy. So we turned the heat all the way up! 

What advice do you have to artists who are just starting out?

Keep doing what you love, keep learning, keep writing, keep working at your craft, become the perfectionist you owe yourself to be to improve, and most importantly: NEVER GIVE UP!

Tell us your favourite Zen practice.

Drinking red wine and talking shit with my best girlfriend!

Following on from Queency’s previous 2022 single Forbidden Fruit, Purple Diamonds is an unapologetic ode to 80s pop, with nods to the opulent essence of Prince, alongside hues of Whitney Houston and a sprinkle of Michael Jackson evident throughout the infectious track. Written entirely by Queency and workshopped with producer Mason Velios and Robbie Chambers, Purple Diamonds was initially recorded live with Queency’s band at the time, before a new arrangement was conjured by Ethan French. Resulting in an effervescent retro pop jam that also oozes with modern wiles, Purple Diamonds also ultimately took some personal inspiration from Queency’s own life to achieve the sensual and buoyant end result, as Queency explains, “Purple Diamonds is a metaphor for what you have most precious to give to someone you find irresistibly attractive. You know, when they’re just your type and the chemistry is right, you just wanna give that person purple diamonds all night! This song is about feeling so in tune with your partner that you’re ready to truly express yourself in the intimacy you have built and may even fall if you keep entertaining this situation. It’s about being vulnerable yet insatiable! Look, let’s stop sugar coating: it’s a booty song! And surprise, surprise, I wrote it as I was falling in love with my partner, so he’s definitely inspired it. It’s a shameless synth heavy and vocally stacked retro pop track modernised to 21st Century’s flavours. It’s definitely an ode to 80s pop, but I wanted it to be seasoned to the taste of today! And I like it extra spicy – so we turned the heat all the way up!”. 

Also teaming up with Tristan Sturmer from Sumo Studios for the overarching Purple Diamonds EP, as well as producers Brian Kruger (AKA Kruger James) and Ethan French, mixing by Brian Kruger and mastering by Adrian Sardi, the ultimate EP broadens the lustier, lush musical flair witnessed on the brand new title track, with the EP expanding out to embrace recurring themes of relationships of all kinds, and navigating each unique and individual connection. From the swooning and smooth as hell crooning of opening track, and previously released single, Forbidden Fruit to bubbling jaunt (I Wished On A Star), hot and spicy soul (Too Late) and heart-rending retro ballads (When Daddy Left), Purple Diamonds is not only as polished and colourfully engaging as its glistening namesake; the EP ultimately also showcases gripping intimacy and optimism, as well as significant catharsis for Queency himself. “The recurring theme throughout the EP is relationships,” reveals Queency of the upcoming EP. “Whether in love, lust, friendship, family, or even solitude, navigating relationships with others and the relationship you have with yourself, is not always straightforward. Writing these songs was my way of reaching catharsis in times of anger, sadness, grief, hope and joy. I’m one of these people who live their emotions intensely and sometimes the only way to process them is to turn these emotions into something productive and tangible. That’s what I’ve done with this EP.”

A self-proclaimed “stage whore”, Queency’s live performance alongside his delectable and increasingly signature take on funky, soulful pop and modern R&B has seen the charismatic singer-songwriter draw comparisons to the likes of Ari Lennox, Daniel Caesar, Erykah Badu and Charlie Puth throughout his career. An artist inherently focused on crafting memorable melodies and punchy hooks, Queency’s wit, honeyed multi-octave vocals and dynamic dance moves has also seen him increasingly turn ears and heads, with a nomination in 2021 for a Western Australian Music Award alongside an ever-growing abundance of sonic material. First discovering his musical obsession with gusto at the age of five hearing the Spice Girls on the radio, while also singing along to Stevie Wonder as a child, it would be Prince and Whitney Houston, Queency’s ultimate biggest musical influences, that cemented the Réunion Island born artist’s eventual creative pathway. Already generating buzz with a string of singles, and live performances seared into the minds of fans in Western Australia, the Queency story is truly only just unfolding, with the slick, sleek and sexy debut EP Purple Diamonds ready to dazzle and catapult Queency to even greater heights in late 2022. 

For now, fans can salivate over the impending EP’s title track, with Purple Diamonds firmly flaunting Queency’s relatability, technicality and showmanship in one extremely sleek package. “Purple Diamonds is my precious baby, so I’m genuinely overjoyed to finally be able to put it out in the world,” Queency concludes of his brand new single finally releasing into the world today. “And I’m excited AF to release the EP soon. This EP is my very first body of work and I’ve poured my soul, sweat and tears in it, so I cannot wait to put it out there!”.

Purple Diamonds is out today, Thursday October 27.

The Purple Diamonds EP is out Thursday November 24. 


Hear2Zen Magazine
Hear2Zen is a "Non Genre Specific" publication that celebrates all things sensory.

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