Tassia Zappia, Italian born in Melbourne, doesn’t gloss over the little things in her music.
She approaches her lyrics with a keen eye for detail only amplified by her show-stopping delivery, outsized vocal flare, and free spirit. Listening to the Australian singer and songwriter can feel like being in the room right next to her during some momentous turning point. Signed to Republic Records in 2021, she introduces herself in a series of singles.
“I pour my heartache, the agony and ecstasy into every one of my songs,” she affirms. “I’m being very straightforward and saying, ‘This is my life. This is how I feel. I hope you feel the same way.’ When you hear a song where you relate to every lyric, it reminds you somebody else is going through the same things, and it makes the world ten times better. You know you’re not the only person in bed crying about this.”
As a kid, Tassia discovered Elvis Presley, Aretha Franklin, Barbra Streisand, and Frank Sinatra through her parents, developing an appreciation for “super old school classics.” Feeling like an outsider, she turned to poetry and music. She kept a diary and cataloged her thoughts in addition to penning poems. By 12-years-old, she began writing songs.
“I felt so weird,” she admits. “Other kids were out playing ball in the street, and I was writing songs about my emotions.”
She discovered the likes of Amy Winehouse and Lauryn Hill and incorporated all of these inspirations into a raw, unfiltered, and soulful style. Mom and dad admittedly “didn’t get it,” but she attended vocal school and focused on quietly cultivating a sound.
As a teenager, Tassia held steady 9-5 job as a cashier at her local supermarket, and wondered if she’d ever see her dreams come to fruition.
In 2019, she took a trip to Los Angeles for a music camp that wasn’t all it was cracked up to be…
“It felt like Fyre Fest,” she deadpans. “They told me I’d have a private chef and my own room in Post Malone’s house! They promised songwriting sessions and red carpet events. It was a big shit show though. I didn’t even have my own bed. I had to share a blowup mattress with another girl. NO chef, NO sessions, and we were barely allowed to leave the house! One girl—who was only 15-years-old—told me her mom sold a ring so she could go on the trip. We discovered we were on a massive scam trip. There was one silver lining though.”
After performing her original composition “WHEN I WAS FOUR” during a visit from chart-topping songwriter Heidi Rojas [Little Mix, Cheryl Cole], she left the audience in tears. Rojas asked for Tassia’s phone number, and they met for coffee a few days later. The following day Heidi took Tassia to a session with Lauren Christy, formerly of The Matrix [Avril Lavigne, David Bowie, Dua Lipa, Bebe Rexha, Rihanna], and this led to Tassia signing a development deal with Heidi and Lauren’s production company.
Returning to Los Angeles, Tassia found herself in sessions every single day. Along the way, she inked a deal with Republic and crafted her debut single “You Don’t Want Me.” On the track, a dreamy guitar line curls around organ and simmer cymbals before dripping into a prominent stomp as her voice flutters from soulful runs into moments of intimate introspection. It orbits the hypnotic and heartbroken refrain, “You don’t want me the way that I want you. You don’t need me the way that I need you.”
“I wrote the song about the first guy I tripped hard on,” she explains. “It’s just so real, I felt those lyrics. When you’re completely and utterly in love but this person doesn’t want you, there’s nothing worse. Musically, we dove into my roots and merged those with a modern vibe to mix two worlds together.”
In the end, Tassia gives every piece of herself in this music.
“When you listen to my music, I hope you feel less alone,” she leaves off. “I want it to be close, relatable, and touching. I want you to grab on to my emotion. I feel like my favorite artists are telling my story. I want to tell people’s stories through my music. I’ve been seriously pursuing this since I was a preteen, sometimes I dream that I’m back working at the supermarket but then I wake up and realize that I’m actually doing this. It’s kind of surreal.”