TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan musician Whyte was able to secure a Golden Melody Award (GMA) nomination this year due to her successful debut album.
Covering almost half of her face with a big hat and a pair of sunglasses has become the signature onstage look for Whyte, aka ?te (壞特), who hides her identity in order to keep her private life and music career separate. She is the only female nominee for Best New Artist at this year's GMA.
Trying to stay out of the public eye was a decision she made when she was an intern at a hospital. The singer, who graduated last year, after seven years in medical school, intends to give herself two years to concentrate on music making.
Why "Whyte"? Because it sounds like the "white" scrubs or medical robes that are typically worn by doctors and nurses in the operating room and hospital environment.
Whyte was nominated as Best New Artist for her debut album, "A Bedroom of One's Own," which features R&B, jazz, chillhop, and lo-fi music. It was released last summer and expresses the young artist's feelings of loneliness and sadness.
Produced by Tower da Funkmasta, the record draws inspiration from Whyte's life experiences and British writer Virginia Woolf's article, "A Room of One’s Own." "The 'bedroom' represents a private space for our souls," said the 27-year-old, "We need to set boundaries and know how to love and be loved."
After her first single "Cazzo" was released in 2019, the musician quickly attracted attention from music lovers. The idea for the song, which is an Italian swear word, was inspired by her Italian friend's one-night stand and focuses on regret, love, and comfort.
Cazzo (Youtube video)
Though she has friends who are keen on exploring lives, the Taipei-based singer says her life before the age of 20 was nothing but being a machine designed to study and take exams.
Whyte said the reason she studied hard was mostly to support her family with scholarships, as she also has three siblings. However, the straight-A student quit medical school temporarily during her junior year.
"I was lost," said Whyte, "but I am glad that I made that choice and gave it a go."
"I wanted to learn how to make coffee, cakes, and music. I did all of them! The best thing about dropping out was that I met Funkmasta who later became the producer of my debut album," Whyte shared.
"If you feel lost, then that is the beginning of changing. I make music to chase happiness over fame. For those who have doubts, keep doing those things that make you happy," the Billie Holiday fan said.
As for love, having ended a two-year relationship just months ago, the medical professional decided to take care of her own heart and soul by facing up to her own feelings. Additionally, she started to read books that look at anxiety, psychology, and therapeutic relationships.
"You deserve to be loved properly, and do not take everything for granted," said Whyte. "My happiest moments by far are when I feel like I get to know about my soul. Instead of running away, I listen to my inner self and be honest with how I genuinely feel."
Lastly, for the sake of gender equality, "Please let me win the award," Whyte joked, as she is the only female nominee to compete for the big prize, along with Bastards, YELLOW, Heat Sketch, Howard Lee, Aoi, and Yo Lee.
The nation's biggest music event, Golden Melody Awards, will announce this year's winners on Saturday (Aug. 21) at the Taipei Music Center. Watch the ceremony on GMA 2021 App, the official YouTube Channel, LINE TODAY, and LINE MUSIC.