Exclusive Interviews

{Exclusive Interview} Fill-in-the-Blanks with Republic Records Recording Artist Daley

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R&B artist Daley in Chicago

Since he has a thing for our city, I asked Daley if he’d be up for a game of fill-in-the-blanks. He said yes. It’s not every day that one of your favorite artists graciously condescends to your randomness. I’ll try to keep the tone here at a level above commit-ably insane from over excitement.

If you’re thinking you’ve never heard of Daley you’re mistaken. Since paying his dues on Britain’s underground urban stages, the futuristic soul singer has collaborated with the likes of Miguel, Questlove, and Pharrell Williams, who produced his infectious track “Look Up”. His concert at Thalia Hall November 21st, will be Daley’s third Chicago performance this year.

“Alone Together,” the breakout hit featuring Marsha Ambrosius from Daley’s debut album, Days and Nights*, opens with the singer’s confession from a hopeful lover, “You’re almost exactly what I need…” He puts into words the feelings of anyone who has ever been almost sure that they were completely in love. He does that a lot, beautifully simplifies the complexities of a romance. It’s easy to understand the U.K. singer’s international appeal.

R&B artist Daley in Chicago

Daley collaborating with Pharrell Williams

His last solo show in Chicago, which filled Lincoln Hall to capacity, brought out a crowd of soul enthusiasts who varied broadly in ages and backgrounds. Paying respect to the city’s rhythmic roots, Daley treated the audience to a cover of Chaka Khan’s “Sweet Thing”, an often pitch problematical tune. He sang it with perfection. At Festival Ravinia last July, he opened for Maxwell with a haunting acoustic set that exposed the singer’s vocal confidence.

Here we play fill-in-the-blanks with an international star… who doesn’t know the first thing about a proper deep dish pizza.

Hi my name is Daley. My friends call me Dales. I am the best at what I do because nobody else does what I do – not exactly the way I do it, anyway! If I had three words to describe who I am they’d be Future. Throwback. Soul. If I wasn’t a musician, I would probably be an Astronaut. I love Chicago because it’s a good-looking city, very easy on the eyes. And I can eat as much Popcorn as I’d like. My favorite pizza can be found at Whole Foods. I’m a sucker for Whole Foods. I know they have them everywhere, but, yeah, I visit one every time I’m in Chicago. [WHAT?! We’ve got to fix this.]

R&B artist Daley in Chicago

Daley with Miguel

I want my music to affect people by becoming a part of their life. I want it to mean something, to speak to what they’re going through and be something that helps them to enjoy memories for years to come. [That is really beautiful.] My favorite song is: That’s not a fair question! But lyrically it’s a song by Joni Mitchell called “Both Sides Now”. My advice to Chicagoings.com readers is with everything you do, try to be happy, and COME SEE ME AT THALIA HALL NOV 21st! It’s the last show of the tour… happiness is a given!

daley at thalia hall

Check out Daley November 21st at Thalia Hall (1807 S. Allport Street, Chicago, IL 60608). For more info click here.

*You can also find “Alone Together” on Daley’s 2012 EP by the same name which includes a stirring cover of an Amy Winehouse tune.

Photos taken from daley.tv.

Kari Herrera is the creator of Chicagoings.com, Chicago’s indie city guide and blog. She often writes about the city’s points-of-interest as experienced by a local. She is a Social Media Marketing Manager and freelance writer. When she’s not working, Kari donates much of her time to the education of French-speaking immigrants in Chicago.

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