Asia Spotlight: Shye on mapping out her own musical path — "This is my journey and I only have myself to prove to"

Asia Spotlight: Shye on mapping out her own musical path — "This is my journey and I only have myself to prove to"


Life is a kaleidoscope of colours and emotions, and Shye’s music is no different. 

Whether she’s navigating through high school crushes against whimsical bedroom-pop melodies or dealing with societal expectations in a dark electronic soundscape, the Singaporean singer-songwriter has mapped out a web of stories and sounds that’s uniquely her own. 

Since emerging onto the music scene in 2018 after winning the music competition Vans Musicians Wanted, Shye has been enchanting the world with her distinctive and versatile sound and immersive stories of love, healing, and growth. 


At only 16, the ‘One Fine Day’ hitmaker began a trek towards an impressive music career, taking each twist and turn with the utmost confidence and grace—and of course, some much-needed help from her mom. 

“[It was challenging to] have people take me and my music seriously, not just because of my age but perhaps also because I’m a female producer making music in my bedroom. I’ve learnt to take it in my stride and to let my music do the talking. This is my journey and I only have myself to prove to,” Shye tells Bandwagon

“I just want to make music that I love, hopefully, good music that can be enjoyed by others. I think having my Mummy onboard my journey right from the start as my sounding board kept things in perspective and really helped to alleviate any stress.”

From the very beginning of her career, Shye has never been averse to some sonic exploration and experimentation—something she prides as her greatest strength as an artist. She takes in whatever inspires her—be it the musical stylings of Tame Impala, Benee, Basement, Aurora, or Stray Kids—and churns out a unique and captivating world you can sink right into. 

“With having a bit more experience in the creative and technical aspects of making music than when I first started, I’ve explored different sounds and styles so I’m really enjoying that! I’d like to think it’s evolved but it’s still ‘Shye’,” she shares. 

Shye released her first EP Augus7ine in 2018, a record characterised by a charming blend of pop and electronic beats and endearing tales of young romance and um… the slender man. 

Since then, the award-winning singer has gone on to traverse greater mountains in her music, tackling an array of genres including folk, pop, and techno. In 2020, she released her first-ever album, days to morning glory followed by her sophomore EP hello TRINITY a year later. 

In her most recent adventure, Shye released ‘phonecase’, an entrancing single about a one-sided crush. “‘phonecase’ is a lighthearted love song about daydreaming about being the one for your crush, about being on the back of that special someone’s phone case,” she says.

“I think crushing on someone whom we are too shy to confess to or are not even aware of our existence is relatable. I also like to place photos/polaroids of my friends on the back of my phone case so I thought it would be really fun to write a song about it.”

Beyond having an impressive collection of songs under her belt, Shye has also achieved several accolades and milestones in the span of her relatively short but immensely fruitful career. Most recently, she won NME’s Best New Act Asia—one of the many memorable stops of her career so far. 

“Each moment has been incredible as they were all so unexpected. They all mark different special periods so I’m truly very thankful for them. I can’t say what’s been the most memorable moment but meeting Clairo and opening for her, winning NME’s Best New Act Asia, being on a billboard in Times Square and being part of the NDP 2021 theme song are all still pretty unbelievable and will always be memorable to me,” says Shye. 

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In the last four years, Shye has walked down a shining path to musical success, from winning awards to grazing huge billboards. When asked if she’d change anything about how her career played out, Shye said, “I don’t think I would have done things any differently but I probably wish I knew how much emotional and mental stamina are needed on this journey.”

“You really need to love what you are doing, to keep persevering if you are serious about it since success is not guaranteed. I’ve also learnt that it is okay to take a break whenever it’s needed and in fact, it’s good to take one.”

Moving forward, the ‘CORDUROY’ act plans to keep doing what she’s always done: learn, explore, and have fun with music, whether that’s trying out new sounds in her own work or discovering new psychedelia and K-pop artists to add to her playlists. 

Following ‘phonecase’, Shye has more in store for 2022—including a brand new EP and live shows. 

“I’m currently in the process of planning my show! I also have new releases planned for June and August and another EP is on the way, looking forward to sharing it with everyone,” she teases. 

Listen to Shye's 'phonecase' here.