M’sian Indie Darling, Lunadira Talks Good Vibes Festival, New Music, Fashion & The Local Music Scene

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Introducing: Sad, groovy, or both? Malaysian singer-songwriter
source: Bandwagon Asia

What are the traits that come to my mind when we think about a star?

Bright, captivating and a wonder to look at, it’s hard to pull away our attention when they appear and that’s exactly how we would describe Malaysian indie darling, Lunadira.

Fresh from her Austin tour, Lunadira is set to perform at Good Vibes Festival 2023, making it her second time gracing the stage.

Malaysian audiences became besotted with her lilting voice, catchy tunes and killer outfits when she first stepped out with her hit single, ‘Forever’s Not Our Thing’ in 2017.

Racking up numerous milestones, including performing for COLORS, JUICE channeled our intrigue towards Lunadira and landed an interview with her where we chat about her life, career, and fashion choices.

Without further ado, here’s our conversation with the star herself…

Lunadira dazzles as first Malaysian artist to perform on Colors

Walk us through the moment you found out you were performing for COLORS and your experience performing on that stage.
It was just a normal day of me pretending to do work at one of my favourite cafes when I got a text from my manager Jin, who sent a screenshot of the email and I squealed and hit my knee on the table. Thank God it wasn’t a full house at the time because I was pretty loud.

We flew to Vietnam to shoot that episode, and it was pretty surreal. We were told that instead of the normal green screen setup that they used for their previous COLORS shows, they actually painted the chosen colors they curated for us.


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A post shared by LUNADIRA (@lunadira_)

It wasn’t as glamorous during the day of the shoot though, because I had a case of the shingles and it was at its worst during THE day. Deanni (@urfavramen) managed to hide the bandaid I had on my right rib with the custom-made dress her and Pika (@g00seyyyy) made for the show.

I was actually struggling a little with my breathing because of the pain but I managed to pull through, thank God. The team also made sure that I was comfortable and gave me space to take my time with it, so I enjoyed my time there, despite the unfortunate case of the shingles haha.

Lunadira Austin Shows on Do512
source: Do512

During your concert in Austin, you performed your latest songs. What is your current favourite song to perform and which one of your songs is a crowd favourite?
I have this track that I ended my set with, and it’s called ‘S.O.S.’ which was also a crowd favourite when I performed it in Austin! They also liked ‘Go Slow’ hehe

Sweet 'n' sad: Lunadira and Reddi Rocket on their emotional collaborative EP 'Tangerine'
source: NME

Out of all the stages you’ve performed on so far, which one holds a special place in your heart?
I have to say that it’s different when you perform for a festival vs. your own show, because the latter brings in people that want to watch YOU and that’s always a special moment.

I’d have to say Tangerine was a magical experience for both Reddi Rocket and I because we really felt the love during those two days. Being on tour with Midnight Fusic was special for us too!

I’m the kind of person that tends to forget how much music can bring people together (I get drowned in my own thoughts a lot lol), and those shows are living proof.


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A post shared by LUNADIRA (@lunadira_)

Since you’re performing at Good Vibes this year, can you share any details on what you might be performing or what you might wear?
New music! And something cool and comfy!!


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A post shared by LUNADIRA (@lunadira_)

You are known for your lilting voice and your hits, but I would argue that you’re also a stunner. How does your music influence your fashion if at all?
Oh wow, thank you. That’s a good question, because I honestly feel like I’m always finding myself both in my music and my “style”.

I do have discussions with Deanni about how certain clothes make me feel and if it fits the current mood of my sound, so it’s always a work in progress! But it’s been fun experimenting and I think I enjoy that part the most, both with fashion and music 🙂

If you could describe the way your life is going right now in the form of a song (doesn’t have to be your own), what song would it be?
I don’t know if it describes my life but Reddi sent me this song and I like it. ‘Green Light’ by Jonwayne & Anderson .Paak.

We are JUICE after all so we need you to spill some tea. What’s your sauciest song that you’ve ever put out and can you spill some tea on the inspiration (or person) behind the lyrics?
We’re still spilling tea, in this current lack of support for homegrown artists’ economy? The only tea is that I see myself in all the songs I write, so take what you will from that haha.


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Since you’ve been performing in multiple countries, can you share some things that you’re unsatisfied with when it comes to the local music scene?
I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to see how artists from other countries work on their craft, and after several conversations, I can honestly say that a lot of these artists face the same problems we do, from having to keep up with social media, to putting in the hours to learn and unlearn different aspects of their craft, and not being celebrated in their own country.

The biggest difference I would say is the environment that they come from. A lot of our form of expression through our art is dictated by our culture and environment and there’s a lot of interesting artists in the city that have the potential to grow.


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A post shared by LUNADIRA (@lunadira_)

I truly believe that there is power in numbers, whether it be through cross-collaborations or being part of a collective. There might be unspoken barriers between “cliques”, but is there really one though?

A lot of our art can benefit from less policing, for sure. There’s way more space we can take up, I just wished they made it easier for us to move around instead of having us pay so much to exist in these spaces. But in terms of what we can do now?

Reach out to each other and plan. Believe that we can create these movements.

Keep up with Lunadira here.

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