With his new EP, Where Do We Begin, just released last month, we thought it was a good time to get to know Ceeko better.
Ceeko is the Melbourne-based South African artist capable of making heartbreak sound smooth. Where Do We Begin contains eight tracks of gorgeous and glowing R&B, that recalls the silkiness of the genre’s late 90’s and early 00’s heyday.
The tracks discuss romance and relationships in an authentically open and honest manner. “Sometimes it takes a while to get to a place where you feel comfortable, but I’m glad it’s happened like that,” Ceeko said of the EP.” I want to show people that they can find themselves, even if it takes a few seasons. Sometimes you have to live a full life to get there.”
‘Messed Up’ was the lead single – complete with a dramatic and stunning video – and it’s a standout yearning ballad. Elsewhere, from the soothing harmonies of ‘Lazy Hours’ to the slinkier lo-fi sound of ‘Passion’, there’s something for everyone here. The air is thick with sensuality and seductiveness throughout; Ceeko knows how to conjure the spirit and soul of true R&B.
As part of our popular Get To Know series, we had a chat with Ceeko to learn more about his influences and career.
How did your artist name come about?
I was online looking for a name that had traditional african meaning. I stumbled across the word ‘Ciko’ (meaning great performing dancing singer) and I was like ay that’s what I aspire to be haha, so that’s gonna be my artist name.
How would you describe your music to your grandma?
I never truly got to know my grandmas as they both passed when I was young. But from what my parents say, they probably wouldn’t like all the profanity and song themes.
Tell us about a few of your tracks; their titles and what they’re about?
This is one I think everyone relates to. It’s all about that horrible feeling of being left scared after someone breaks yah heart and leaves yah torn.
I wrote this reflecting on a Bali holiday I had in 2019 and a night out with my wife, fam and friends. We hit the town. We had fun. We danced on tables and broke them haha. It always reminds me to live in the moment and enjoy life!
This track is a plea to love and letting me back in. We all get insecure and being burnt or used can leave us unwilling to trust. But we got to try and open up again in order to move forward.
What do you love about your hometown?
I love my people and the humble suburbs I grew up in South Africa. People didn’t have much, but kids played on the streets and had a great childhood. Durban raised me, defined me and made me.
Career highlight so far?
I would say it’s the release of this EP. It has been a long time coming for me. I had previously made an EP and decided not to release it because I felt that I wasn’t where I wanted to be as an artist yet.
This EP for me was a greater understanding of self and acceptance of who I am and the energies I resonate with. It has a special place in my heart and it’s a defining chapter in my life.
Fave non-music hobby?
Running, I just love it. Don’t know why [laughs].
What’s on your dream rider?
Nando’s Peri Peri Chicken with Perinaise Sauce.
Dream music collaboration?
Damn, I can’t choose haha… but I would have to say Pharrell is top of the list right now!
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Doing what I love and working with the greats I’ve looked up to for so long.
What’s your go-to karaoke song?
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
Stay humble and stay true to yourself.
What’s one obsession you have that no one would guess after listening to your music?
I’m a huge sci-fi nerd. Star Wars, Star Trek and more! Also anything animated.