Ruby Gill is a 20-year-old singer/songwriter from Pietermaritzburg, alienating everyone in her block of Melville flats with loud singing till the early hours of the morning. Ruby plays the piano and guitar, writes all her own music and lyrics, and has landed publishing work with Sony writing for other musicians, such as young Johnny Apple. The young songstress is a master on the piano, donning the skills that most seasoned musos have only just mastered in their careers.

This is how the magical Ruby describes herself. We were there to witness her performance at Oppikoppi 21: The Fantastic Mr VOS VOS, where she blew minds and made people sit up and take note of her. She entered the Converse Get out of the Garage 2015 competition and ended up in the Top 10. Now, it’s your duty to help this lady to get to the top.

Each person has six votes: three online (click here) and three SMS votes (SMS “GOOTG2015 BAND 6” to 45783) and each vote is an entry for a fan to win a prize as well, what prize you ask? Well, a week in NYC with the winner! It’s a win-win situation!

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With all of that said, we had a quick chat with Ruby about hummus, Converse and the word “magical.”

Hey Ruby, thanks for taking the time to have a quick chat with us!

Yay! Thanks so much for figuratively having me here.

Converse’s Get out of the Garage 2015 is mammoth competition, and you’re one of the Top 10 nominees. How did it feel when they announced that you’re one of the finalists?

Magical. I thought they were announcing it in alphabetical order so I stopped looking after they passed R. I didn’t even realise I was a finalist until someone messaged me and then I was all “whaaaat.” I was super honoured to be included and massively excited! It’s an incredible platform for exposure, and just being in the top ten has already brought so much learning and adventure.

We’re really excited for you! It must have been a crazy few days following the announcement?

Thank you so much! I spent at least two days trying to figure out how Facebook really worked, haha. I was buzzing, it was super crazy.

Cray! How would you urge people to vote for you?

The obvious motivation would be that just by voting, you stand a chance to win a trip with the winner to America! That’s mad cool.

On a more personal level, I am so keen to win this thing for two other reasons:

It would allow me to put my music career on a nice wooden boat with pretty orange sails and send it all the way to the island of NEW ALBUM and stop by America on the way. Recording in new york is like finishing all the iced tea and then realising you have MORE ICED TEA IN THE FRIDGE. it’s magical. This is a career-changing, once-in-lifetime sort of deal.

I also want to win this thing for every 14-year-old Avril Lavigne all-girl cover band dreaming of doing this with their lives. It still blows my mind that I’m the only woman in this top ten. Out of hundreds upon hundreds of submissions. there doesn’t even seem to be another lady in any of the bands hitting up some harmonies. It’s just me. and that’s crazy! I’m hoping that if I win (and even if I don’t) I can help all the other ladies in the country pave a bigger path through the mountains of testosterone in the music industry and get our voices heard.

You throw the word “magical” around a lot, is that how you would describe your sound?

That’s a magical question. I’m always rubbish at describing my sound, but I think you’ve hit the life goal on the figurative head. When I listen to those songs that make your solar plexus all tingly, that’s magical, and that’s the kind of feeling I want people to feel.

Photo by Judith Belle

Photo by Judith Belle

Magical! You’ve performed at many festivals and venues before, which show stood out the most for you? And why?

Flip, definitely Oppikoppi this year! It was definitely the biggest show I’ve ever played, and I had a big band with me and the sound was so much bigger and darker and deeply happier than I’ve ever been able to create on my own. I woke up that morning with a monster throat infection and a molten fever and I spent the hours before the show downing ibuprofen and Panado. I downed at least a litre of water with every kind of effervescent medication you could imagine between each song of the set. Magical, haha. I would do it a million times over, though. People stopped, and listened (like LISTENED listened), and danced, and felt what we were feeling.

Getting back to Get out of the Garage 2015, how did you choose the song that was submitted to Converse? Any personal criteria that had to be fulfilled?

“Happiness” is my favourite song off my last album (which was ages ago). I would have loved to submit a more recent one but I haven’t been in studio in forever – my sound has changed a lot – but that one seemed most fitting to how I write, and it’s vulnerable (vulnerable is good).

How has this whole experience treated you? Converse, Openroom.TV and the like.

Flip, I’m so grateful for this opportunity! It has been wild. I got to work with Jason Finkel (google him he’s mad magical) from ‘Murica and make music in my favourite studio with my favourite people and I’ve learnt so much. About music, technology, writing, creating, humans, feelings, how to not be afraid, how to embrace everything, how to dance awkwardly in front of people, how to parallel park, how to make choices, how to say no and yes and OH MY GOSH YES. The organisers have created such a mad community and platform, and the Openroom team have been incredible. Their video of my studio session is the best thing I’ve ever seen!
Plus, Converse gave me the coolest shoes I’ve ever owned.

Rad verby. Last question: If you won Get out of the Garage 2015, how would you celebrate?

I’d eat an entire tub of hummus and take most of my clothes off and dance madly through my apartment block.

We would like to thank Ruby for her time and wish her all the best! GO AND VOTE FOR HER. NOW!

Converse Rubber Tracks Joburg – Ruby GillTune in to Openroom.TV at 3pm today to see what happened at Ruby Gill’s Converse Rubber Tracks Studio session in Joburg last week!Vote for Ruby to win the Converse Get Out Of The Garage 2015 competition at http://gootg.onlinecampaigns.co.za/ and you could win a trip to New York City!#GOOTG2015

Posted by Openroom.TV on Monday, October 5, 2015