The singer talks to us ahead of his Gigwise presents Community Festival performance
Alexandra Pollard

12:54 3rd November 2015

"Oh God!" Tiggs da Author winces and turns away with an abashed chuckle. "You know what, I tweeted that, and now probably every interviewer's gonna be like, 'Fuck's sake!'"

The tweet he's referring to - which, given the look of genuine embarrassment on his face, I'm slightly regretting bringing up - was written the day before we sit down together in an East London pub, and read simply, "I hate interviews."

It's not the most promising thing to read while gearing up to do just that - but the conversation that follows somewhat belies this sentiment. Though he clearly has a hard time talking about himself - "I just don't like hyping something up" - Tiggs (so called because he used to wear bags and hats with Tigger on them in school) is calm and quietly assured.

When I ask how he'd sum up his live show to someone who knew nothing of him, his answer is beautifully concise, and makes no attempts at faux modesty: "Crazy, energetic, spontaneous, unconventional, witty... Er, yeah!"

We'll be presenting a night at XOYO headlined by the magnificent Petite Meller, and also featuring the must-hear acts K.Flay and Tiggs Da Author. For tickets and information, head here 

Watch the video for 'Georgia' below

After spending his early childhood in Tanzania, Tiggs moved to London at the age of eight. By eleven, he had discovered music - but his tastes lived and died by what his friends thought was cool. For a long time, this was grime and only grime. "At that age you don't really care about anything else if your friends don't care about it," he explains. "The second I left school I kinda started loving music a bit more, started listening to a lot more music. I went back to Tanzania and I started listening to some African jazz music, and that's when my mindset changed.

"I started digging for music, searching, searching, searching, and the more you do that, the more knowledge you have. It's like you're studying for an exam or something, and you've done all your research, and you hope you know enough."

So his passion for African jazz didn't start while he was living in Tanzania? "When I moved from Tanzania, I was too young, so I wasn't even into music... or I might hear a Michael Jackson song or whatever, and just like it 'cus I like his dancing, but I didn't think too deep of it. I wasn't even thinking about music, I wanted to play football."

Football's eventual loss, though, is music's gain. Tiggs' music, signposted by the playful, soulful jazz of 'Georgia', is a slice of nostalgia served up on a contemporary plate. Already, there's a significant deal of hype around him - not that he lets that pressure affect his ability to write a great song.

"For me, when it comes to music, I don't think I'll ever have issues with writing songs, 'cus I feel like that is my thing. That's what I do, so I never worry if I have enough music. I don't think that'll be an issue I'll have."

He pauses, and a playful grin flashes across his face. "But hey, maybe I need to do more interviews! Those are the issues I'll be having."

Gigwise presents Petite Meller, K.Flay, Tiggs Da Author and special guests at XOYO as part of London's Community Festival on Wednesday 4 November. For tickets and more information, visit here

Photo: Screenshot