Rising music talent nestled in Kirra beach
KIRRA singer-songwriter Straalen was just 12 years old when he was catapulted into stardom.
It all began when he performed at the State of Origin in Queensland.
From that performance, he was plucked out of a world full of hopefuls by music industry giant Sony.
Last month, Straalen released his latest single, Be Mine Tonight, pulled from his upcoming EP.
He said it was strange hearing his song played on the radio for the first time.
“I’ve heard it a few times, which is kind of cool,” Straalen said.
“We were just driving around to pick up some food and my song comes on the radio.”
He was thrilled with the response after its release in late February.
“We’re really happy with it, to be honest,” he said.
“Everyone’s loving the song. It’s a great feeling because it’s exactly what I wanted.”
Straalen, who has been writing songs for many years, said the single hadn’t taken long to produce.
“I wrote Be Mine Tonight pretty quickly,” he said. “I wrote that one maybe in an hour.”
He collaborated with Central Coast producer Lindsey Jackson for the song and said the pairing was a great experience.
“Lindsey is awesome,” he said. “As a producer he’s great as well.
“It’s cool working with people you get a really good vibe off.”
Straalen has completed the writing for his EP, which is due to be released later this year and will feature a diverse range of songs.
“I think that every song sends a different message,” he said.
While Be Mine Tonight is “about a girl who doesn’t realise she’s beautiful”, Straalen said the EP would also touch on harder-hitting issues like teen suicide.
“I only really write about things that are close to my heart and things that I feel need to be out there and things that need to change,” he said.
Straalen said his songwriting was often inspired by his surroundings at his long-time home of Kirra.
“I do a lot of songwriting here on the beach,” he said.
“It’s a great place to chill and you’ve always got a good vibe here.”
Now 18, Straalen said he’d been given a longer leash on creative ideas as an adult.
“Being the youngest singer signed to Sony... it was an incredible experience,” he said.
“You don’t always get things your own way, being that young and inexperienced, but I’m doing what I always wanted to do.”