“Music is in my being,” says Brooklyn based Ilse Gevaert of her inspiration to enter the music industry. Having grown up in Ghent, Belgium, even as a child she had been constantly singing, though at times she did not even know the words. “It is always around me, like magic and I am always thinking about music,” elaborates Ilse about her passion.

“I am Human, I feel small

I’ve been through it all

Still I stand tall

They say I should run away, 

run away, run away

They say I should run away, 

run away, run away

They say I should run away, 

run away, run away

But I stayed

I stayed”

Always keeping things real and showing her trueself on stage has ensured that Ilse’s music is a breath of fresh air from the mundane. “I am Human is all about being real. Today, if you look at the music industry it is becoming crazier and crazier. Most of the time albums or singles potray subjects that people cannot relate to. I am Human is exactly the opposite, it reflects something real that people can feel and understand.The aim of music is to connect people,” she explains.

Her voice, the instruments on the track as well as the composition are raw and bold. “I am Human, is very pure, with piano and string instruments, using very little modern arrangements. It is surprising how something simple can affect you in such a big way. People are really deeply and emotionally affected. I am very happy that people feel it so much. It shows that I am not alone,” reflects Ilse.

It is surprising how something simple can affect you in such a big way. People are really deeply and emotionally affected…
It shows that I am not alone

While her parents love for Rock was the first to inspire Ilse, the sound and feel of Soul paved the way for her own unique music journey. Influenced by the 60s and 70s as well as Club music, Ilse’s sounds have combined the best of the old and the new to create music that has her identity… almost mystical.

Born without her left arm, Ilse’s journey as an artiste has been anything but easy. But, she did not allow that to be an obstacle, her experiences have shaped her as a person and her music reflects her inner strength. “When I was a little girl, I saw people complaining about many things and being very unhappy about themselves, especially girls and women. I had to learn to appreciate what I had without constantly looking at what I didn’t have. If I kept looking at what I didn’t have, then I would be sad and unable to move on,” she said. “My message to everyone is if you want to be happy in life look at what you have and not what you don’t have.” And, in “I Am Human”, Ilse does not hesitate to speak of her vulnerability and finding strength through love from a deeply personal perspective. It is about staying true to herself and “reminding us that standing tall after going through it all is no small victory.”

Born without her left arm, Ilse’s journey as an artiste has been anything but easy. But, she did not allow that to be an obstacle…

The video of I am Human is very different and captivating. It deviates from the norm, where it uses a “futuristic approach”. Working with the young director Dario Calmese, strong visuals were created to express the vulnerability in a powerful way, which connected people. Furthermore, it was felt that using the piano and lush strings would convey the emotions behind the song. “I am thankful to Dario first of all as a wonderful friend and for being a deep person himself. He understood what was required. I wrote I am Human two years ago and we worked on the video for six months. Everything had to be simple, but the lyrics and the video had to convey a message. I love the modern touch in the video. We also wanted to offer to people freedom to find their own message in the song,” explained Ilse.

I am Human  is about staying true to herself and “reminding us that “standing tall” after “going through it all” is no small victory

Living on a Cloud, which was Ilse’s first single was inspired by the message of love as “I am a big fan of John Lennon and I have always been inspired by his message of love. It was a vintage song with a modern aspect to it. The song was all about love, because at the end of day love is really what makes you happy.” Living on a Cloud and I am Human focus on very different topics, but both as in the entire album have ensured that everything is kept real.

“I would love to visit Sri Lanka. One of my goals is to travel around the world because I believe we are one with no divisions”

“I would love to visit Sri Lanka. One of my goals is to travel around the world because I believe we are one with no divisions.” said Ilse. “Our world has had great leaders such as Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela, and I would love to revive their spirit through my music. I would definitely love to teach people that you cannot wait for others to do what you want. To make this world a better place we have to do it ourselves,” says Ilse… a true inspiration.