Over the past two years, rising star Xenia Ghali has delivered hit after hit. What seems like an overnight success, this proven artist from Athens, Greece has had two singles catapult to the #1 spot on Billboard’s Dance Club Songs chart. With her smash hits “Under These Lights” and “Places” Xenia Ghali is shaking up the dance music scene and the music industry all together. This multifaceted musician took time out to chat with Industry Rules about her career.

IA: Right now you’re topping the charts with ‘Places’ and ‘Under These Lights’, how are you enjoying the success? Has anything changed?
XG: I am beyond honored that my singles “Places” and “Under These Lights” both went to #1 on the Billboard Dance Club Songs chart. Honestly, it wasn’t something I was expecting at all!
With any success, I am always thinking of the next step ahead. Through hard work, self-belief, a great team and the failures I have learned from, more success will come. If anything has changed, it is that I am now working even harder and I’m more motivated than ever!

IA: Your background of studying music includes music composition, film scoring, and production at the University of Surrey and New York University. Did your interest in music evolve out of a hobby or do you come from a musical family?
XG: Despite the fact that neither of my parents have anything to do with music, they believed in my sister and me in being well-rounded individuals. As such, we were both classically trained on the piano and the flute since the age of 5.

IA: You are a DJ, producer, songwriter and classically trained musician. Which of these talents was Xenia Ghali first known for? Which was your first love? 
XG: That’s a tough question! I was classically trained before I did anything else. Then, I began songwriting when I was 15 while I was in a high school band and played the lead guitar. Later, when I went to the UK to receive my Bachelor’s Degree in Music Composition, Production and Film Scoring, I started producing and DJing. I can’t really say I have a first love. Music in general is the love of my life!

IA: What was the first tune(s) you learned?
XG: Actually I wish I knew! I was 5, so I assume a really basic and easy classical piece.

IA: Besides rockin’ out on the ones-and-twos do you play any instruments?
XG: I do! Piano, flute, guitar and the drums.

IA: You’ve had the opportunity to collaborate with so many famous musicians, such as Wyclef Jean, Pitbull, & Raquel Castro. Who are your musical influences? Which famous musicians do you admire and why?

XG: I have had the pleasure of collaborating with incredible musicians who I was truly inspired by and most importantly who are amazing people. My musical influences range from classical music to house music! As such, I admire many musicians from different genres. A few are Tchaikovsky, Daft Punk, the Chemical Brothers, Simon and Garfunkel, Stevie Wonder, Queen, Porter Robinson and MK. I admire these musicians because they have each pioneered in their own ways and left their mark in the music industry.

IA: In addition to the artists previously mentioned, which other musicians have you learned from?
XG: Jean Michel Jarre. Anyone in the electronic music scene should definitely study him.

IA: Are there any artists or producers who you would want to work with? What is your dream project? 
XG: I would love to work with MNEK. I think he is a fantastic producer! Also, I would love to have the opportunity to be in the studio with Adele.

IA: From directing all of your music videos to owning the independent label Funky Sheep Records you walk to your own beat in the music industry, especially as a woman. How do you think that influences the music industry? And, what role do you think an artist has in society?  
XG: The Internet and social media has enabled artists and musicians to become much more independent. They are able to reach a global audience, control how and when they want to brand themselves, and with what strategy.

This has obviously created a much larger volume of music being released on a daily basis, which consequently makes it harder for a musician or a song to ‘cut through’ and impact. Having said that, it is a very exciting time too as artists now have the opportunity to be heard, to build their own brand and to create a following without having to depend on anyone else.

The ”Under These Lights” hitmaker is making sure that the lights never go out. With her ambitious line up of shows, Xenia Ghali has been touring almost nonstop. She will finish out her tour in Greece, which is sure to make the home crows ecstatic. Xenia Ghali’s distinct sound combined with her determination, passion, and intelligence there is no doubt that the dance music world has only experienced a small taste of what she has offer. And, once her sound infiltrates the entire music industry fans will be coming back for seconds.

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