VASSY shares her philosophy on making your dreams come true


Since beginning her music career in her native Darwin almost two decades ago, Australian artist VASSY has traveled the world collaborating with some of dance music’s biggest names.

From winning Triple J’s Song of the Year to dominating the charts around the globe, the artist shares she’s learned a lot of valuable lessons along the way. Today she’s a multi-platinum award-winning artist who has positioned herself as one of dance music’s most prominent and authentic female voices.

Her discography includes numerous global chart-topping hits, including Bad and Secrets, with dance music icons David Guetta and Tiësto respectively.

VASSY has topped the Billboard dance charts and dance radio in the USA an impressive eight times with recent singles such as Trouble, Concrete Heart, Lost and Nothing to Lose.

The new remixes of her tune Tuff, a collaboration with GT-Oficeare guaranteed to fill any dance floor. Now based in the USA, VASSY spoke to OUTinPerth during a recent trip home to Darwin.

Asked if she could tell if a song would make it as a hit, VASSY said she knew her latest track Tuff was a great song as soon as she wrote it.

“I feel it after I’ve written it. I know when once I’ve done my hook, I’m like, ‘there’s gonna be a good one’. Just get that little gut feeling. I don’t know if everyone’s gonna love it. But I know. ‘Yeah, this is gonna be a good one.'”

As we spoke, she’d just notched up a new record with Bad, her collaboration with David Guetta and Showtek. The tune having just topped two billion streams online, including one billion streams on YouTube.

“Yeah, the fans went nuts. I mean, it’s insane. We have diehard fans for that record. So you never know. Like, I wrote that song thinking ‘It’s gonna be good one’ … and two billion streams later. I mean there’s only six billion people in the world. It’s crazy.” VASSY said.

After beginning her career in Australia VASSY headed stateside to crack the US market, and she’s worked hard to make her mark on the international stage.

“I went to America, and it’s in America where things really took off for me. You know, it was tough, because America is a very, very tough industry. Sometimes I think to myself, ‘How did I do this? This is insane.'”

“It’s just wild to think, I’m a Darwin girl, I grew up in Darwin and I go off and become a multi platinum artist in America, and it’s just insane, but it just goes to show you that dreams are possible. If you manifest them and you believe in them.” VASSY said.

Making it on the international stage hasn’t been without sacrifices, and VASSY highlights that there were times of great loneliness when she really missed her family.

“Many years with loved ones, family and comfort,” has been the price of success according to the singer.

“I could have had it really good here if I just stayed here. In America, I was alone. I was vulnerable. Lonely for many years… it was really lonely, and I had no support. I lost a lot of family time, which really sucks.”

“Everyone I knew would go to their family barbecues or whatever, and I didn’t have that. That was really tough, and just being around nasty, nasty things in the business. I just feel like in Australia, I probably would have been protected more, just safer.”

Today the singer isn’t lonely anymore, she’s getting married soon, and she quickly learned to look after her self in the music business too and says her perseverance paid off.

“When I left Australia to pursue my dream in America, I had left Australia being someone, being established, being on radio, magazines, TV shows, and I moved to America, where I’m now nobody, and I’m a nobody in a big circle.

“I was just a young, talented, pretty girl. So now I’m this vulnerable chick, who could be easily exploited because that’s what people do in the music industry when you’re an artist, and I really had to navigate through it, I really, really, had to follow my gut, my instinct. I got burned several times, obviously.

Despite coming up against challenges VASSY said her perseverance eventually paid off.

“It’s about perseverance and resilience. Getting through the tough times, when the going gets tough the tough gets going, and you’ve just got to roll with the punches and stick it out.

“Rejections are just redirections, they are going to put you on the path that you are meant to be, they hurt, they suck at the time, but you’ve just got to persevere and stick it through those tough yucky times, because there is a light at the end of the tunnel and it’s rewarding.”

“You’ve got to be patient, you’ve got to go through those lows, to have the highs.” VASSY shared.

Along the way the singer has signed on to many different campaigns for social issues too, including being photographed for the NOH8 campaign which aims to stop homophobia and transphobia.

“I’ve always been a huge advocate for the community.” VASSY said.  “I perform every year at several several pride festivals around around the USA, I’ve done other countries, but predominantly the US, and I love them, it’s the best.

“For me, it’s been it’s something very close to my heart from a young age, since I was 14, basically. So I was very proud to put my name on that campaign and be part of that because I just feel that everyone deserves to have equal rights, everyone, for whatever reason.

“Every person has the right to love who they want to love, to do what they want to do, it’s their right!”

Asked if she had any advice for younger women entering the music industry on how to make good career choices and keep yourself safe, VASSY said everyone has to make their own choices.

“I have had to make a choice about that, and you know, I’m not here to judge anyone, obviously, but I’ve had to make a choice and I have missed out on certain opportunities. If I, you know – had I followed through with certain things. Not that I’m saying you need to fully compromise yourself, but it’s just not the way I roll.

“So, because of that, I missed out on a lot of things, but other women in the business, if they feel comfortable doing that, it opens up other doors for them. That’s fine. If you know, whatever they want to do. So I’m not here to judge.

“But to stay safe, I would say, first of all you got to be smart and follow your instinct in situations. So I have been in a few situations when I was younger, I don’t experience this now at this point in my career obviously, but in the beginning of my career, when I was trying to start and explore these opportunities, I was this young, naïve, good looking chick, right, and so it was an opportunity for men.

“So I had to be very careful and I did find myself in sticky situations, I had to find ways to get out of them. The best and safest way was to play dumb, and find a way to get out, which was without putting them on alert. So I was very fortunate, thank God, nothing happened to me.

“I would just say to women, try not to dress provocatively if you’re going into meetings and you want to be taken seriously. I’m not saying you don’t have to be feminine and sexy, you could still be powerful and come across feminine, but just be smart about things like that, don’t put yourself in these vulnerable positions. Don’t be alone in these meetings.

Growing up in Darwin VASSY dreamed of becoming an international recording artist, and now that dream has come true, she’s looking forward to getting married, having more family time, and a little more work-life balance.

But for other people dreaming of making it big, her advice is to ignore the people who ask you what your back up plan is in case you’re dreams don’t come true. Her advice is stick to Plan A.

“You’ve got to do it and stick to your plan. I always say, once you have a Plan B, you’ve compromised your Plan A.”

Graeme Watson

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