Rikalet is a Paarl-born South African composer, contralto singer-songwriter, pianist and lyricist, currently residing in Port Elizabeth, who have been playing music from the age of 5.

She takes the listener on a rich and colourful sound journey exploring various moods and textures in her music.

Growing up in such a culturally rich country, Rikalet draws inspiration from a diverse array of styles and is forever pushing boundaries, wandering through many different genres as she experiments with a fusion of elements such as blues, jazz & afro-cuban, soul, classical, dream pop, alternative, art rock, dark folk, manouche, cinema and cabaret.

As a child she was always surrounded by music at home. She has done training in classical and jazz music composition and performance and feels very strongly that music should be part of any child’s education due to the various stimulating neuro-cognitive functions it serves. A curious multi-instrumentalist studying various instruments over the years including pipe organ, accordion and violin, she now focuses on piano, voice, acoustic guitar and organ bass synth. 

She takes inspiration from artists such as Thelonious Monk, Brad Mehldau, Ennio Morricone, Tom Waits, Lhasa de Sela, Amanda Palmer & The Dresden Dolls, Tori Amos, Billie Holiday, Amy Winehouse, Hugh Laurie, Smashing Pumpkins, Fiona Apple and Radiohead.

As a passionate writer, her reflective lyrics leave the listener intrigued as she covers a vast variety of existential themes that many can relate to. She obsesses over the organic connections that exist between music and lyrics, rendering the two as inseparable – “I love changing up the instrumentation, rhythms and harmonic progressions from song to song, so each song or collection of songs has a different mood and colour. It’s about using the music to demonstrate what words or the image cannot say, or to amplify or echo what is being said.”

She released her first demo EP of original music, Mother Tongue, in January 2019. This was a collaborative work by 10 different musicians in Port Elizabeth and Cape Town. The initial recording process started in Cape Town at Freshmeat Studios with Gertjie Besselsen and Jacques du Plessis from Mr Cat & the Jackal and was completed, mixed and mastered at Crescent Recording in Port Elizabeth. The main idea for this release was an unrefined analogue sound. With a slightly detuned piano and her vocals as the central focus, it contains elements of jazz, blues, reggae, gypsy jazz, dark folk and cabaret. 

During the lockdown in 2020, she started working on a dream pop project, Wasabi Club, with her husband, Matthew de Lange. They are currently in the process of recording a 6 track EP, Kintsugi, due for release in 2022.

At present she is also working on the release of her first full album, Tourmaline, which is scheduled for release in early 2022. It features a colorful group of musicians from Port Elizabeth. They are Timon Oosthuizen (drums & percussion), Tiago Vital (electric bass, trombone), Curt Rix (trumpet), Tiaan Uys (double bass, saxophone, guitar, clarinet, electric bass) and Ashton Cusens (accordion).

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