Kluane-born singer/songwriter Diyet is perched on the cusp of local — perhaps national and international – stardom, and yet remains playfully demure.
Her newly released album, The Breaking Point, is an eclectic mix of contemporary rock, R&B, country and a touch of roots.
Diverse, too, is her band of musicians, culled from her surrounding Yukon as well as reaching out to the big music scene in Vancouver.
On this album, Bob Hamilton is on the electric guitar, Goby Catt, the bass, Robert VanLieshout is on drums, percussion and electric guitar, Annie Avery is on the organ, and Darryl Havers joins Avery on the organ and piano.
“I owe this album to the fantastic and talented musicians who joined the band,” comments Diyet.
And what of her influences?
Diyet recounts studying music from age 12 onwards, graduating from the University of Victoria with a degree in classical voice. “I found out after school that opera wasn’t really my thing,” she laughs.
“I started songwriting, and discovered that I was actually pretty good at it.”
Diyet debuted in the music world songwriting for an assortment of professionals, from game shows in Japan to the Swiss version of American Idol.
After writing for others for a number of years, Diyet returned to her roots – home in Burwash Landing.
She began writing for herself, and slowly developed the songs featured in the album recently released.
“It was new, writing for myself. It took me a long time to get everything to come together, but now that it has, it’s wonderful,” she says.
Letting go of her music and trusting the band was also important for Diyet, and the creative process has helped her strengthen and grow.
Traditions of her family, First Nation, and close-knit community echo in her words and in her album.
She hopes to keep her association with Old Crow Recording, rather than seeking large record companies.
“I want to keep true to my roots, at a level myself and my family are comfortable with,” she says.
Themes of hope also resonate in the album, and Diyet has received comments on the positive and uplifting nature of the songs.
“The album faces a lot of issues, including the idea of coming home, the struggle to become self-governing, and learning about independence,” she says.
She also emphasizes that the sound is for general audiences and hopes to keep the appeal universal. Despite keeping the album release slow and careful, she’s still motivated to tour and promote her album and music — she just makes sure to keep the important things close to her heart.
Diyet will be commencing a Canada-wide tour as early as this upcoming year, and is planning a European tour shortly afterwards. Locally, she will be performing at the Yukon Arts Centre on Saturday, May 1 to release her new CD, The Breaking Point, and at the Haines Junction St. Elias Centre on May 8.
For upcoming tour information and to see Diyet’s blog, check out www.diyetmusic.com.