Earlier this month AGAMA dropped her debut EP Safe In Noise offering a soaring blend of soulful vocals, rich jazz infusions, and shimmering electronica. To mark the release, and ahead of her upcoming show in March, we asked her some quickfire questions.

The musical moniker of London-based multi-instrumentalist Cassandra Gurling, her recent EP as AGAMA sees Gurling fully exploring, embracing and expressing her identity, drawing inspiration from black female writers such as Maya Angelou, Kimberle Crenshaw, Alice Walker and Dionne Brand. The words of these women have inspired me to step more boldly into my identity and I hope to pass that on through my music and lyrics”, she expresses, which is something certainly tangible in AGAMA’s music as she weaves powerful narratives both lyrically and sonically with each track on the EP. 

Ahead of her show at Canada Water Theatre on March 18th, get to know AGAMA In Short…

If I had to describe our music in 3 words, I’d use…

Eclectic, Experimental and raw

My favourite film ever is…

Anything with Cher in it. Sometimes on a Sunday afternoon I think to myself – ‘I think I need a dose of Cher today’.
I also really like the films of Lebanese director Nadine Labaki – I love her films ‘Caramel’ and ‘Where do we go now’, they are the stories of Lebanese women

The most famous person I’ve met is…

I saw Scarlett Johanson in a dingy club in Dalston about 7 years ago, does that count?

The best venue I’ve played so far is…

I played a show last year at the Birmingham Hippodrome which was a pretty big deal for me.

The song I hate the most is…

Happy Birthday, everyone always sings it really slow and out of tune. It doesn’t really represent the occasion. I much prefer the Stevie wonder version.

The worst job I’ve ever had is…

Where do I start, I’ve had so many terrible jobs. Either folding things in Gap (that was pretty mundane) or working as one of those people that try to sell you contracts on the street like broadband/ donate for a charity – that is really hard work. Hats off to anyone who does that job, I think I last 2 days at the most.

My Favourite word is….

Didgeridoo – It would be great if I could use it more often

If I had a superpower I’d want it to be….

To freeze time like piper from charmed. (Although I would probably develop a pretty bad stealing habit). Or the power to make people understand one another with a swift click of my fingers.

If I could play a gig anywhere it would be…

Royal Albert Hall

I think you should listen to…

Angel Bat Dawid, I love her music, its timeless and raw. I love her recent tracks ‘We are stars’ and ‘Black family’

If I could see anyone play live it would be…

It would have to be Nina Simone

AGAMA plays Canada Water Theatre on March 18th, tickets here. 

‘Safe In Noise’ is out now.