[INTERVIEW] XIE Dives Into Her New Single 'C'est La Vie', Pre-Set Rituals, + More

XIE, C'est La Vie, Birds In Paradise

| May 26, 2023

Embracing her Chinese-American roots, rising musical innovator XIE (pronounced “Shay”) has cultivated an exotic style of house throughout her career. A mixed bag of talent, she is a singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, producer, and DJ, to name a few.

Adding to her encapsulating stage presence that she brings to every performance, XIE has been dropping heaters left and right. Once we got a listen to her new hit single, “C'est La Vie”, we knew we had to talk to XIE about the release and her project as a whole.

Check out iEDM’s exclusive interview with XIE below.


iEDM: Your recent track “Birds In Paradise” is an electrifying house anthem! Why do you think the thumping bassline and your seductive vocals complement each other so well? What is the intended effect you wanted your lyrics to have on the listener?

XIE: “Birds In Paradise” is all about escapism. I want the listener to be entranced and taken to a worry-free place of happiness. Imagine it playing out the mains in a dark club and feeling whisked away into a world where nothing else matters.

iEDM: There are so many unique soundscapes throughout “Birds Of Paradise”. Which production elements are you most drawn to for their exoticism, and how did you craft them?

XIE: “Birds In Paradise” was a fun one to make and felt really experimental in certain ways sonically for me. The basis for the vibe was definitely the pulsating bass that slides between notes and my almost haunting vocals. Then sprinkling in synth stabs and playing with sounds that almost resemble electronic birds really brought the song to life.


iEDM: Clearly there is an alternate vibe present in your newest single “C’est La Vie” when compared to “Birds Of Paradise”. What inspired this shift in style and the concept for the song as a whole?

XIE: When I sit down to write a song, it truly is telling of the present moment I’m in. Writing “C’est La Vie”, I started with the lines ‘sometimes we do stupid things and say what we don’t mean’, which spurred on the whole rest of the song and concept.

I was dealing with terrible anxiety, and wanted to portray an uplifting angle for that as a remedy. Every song is its own world and I try to listen to what the track wants and needs, so the piano and UK house vibe really fit “C’est La Vie”s sentiment.

iEDM: What techniques and process were used to alter your vocal delivery to match the energy of the instrumental in “C’est La Vie”? How does this contrast with your singing on “Birds Of Paradise”?

XIE: I am singing out more in “C’est La Vie” which was really nice to be able to showcase. I always want to write catchy songs that people can sing and that get stuck in their heads. I think “C’est La Vie” has those parts for sure. “Birds In Paradise” was a more moody delivery of lyrics to fit its darkness, that style of what I call talk-singing is something I love to do and comes super naturally to me.


iEDM: The main piano progression in “C’est La Vie” is so uplifting and euphoric. What helped you to forge this sequence? How were you able to layer it with the rest of the track in a way that feels organic?

XIE: I actually started with adding piano in the drop areas, then flew it over behind my vocals at the beginning, adjusting it as I went until I was happy with the progression. It pretty much worked from the get-go, which was cool because I took it as a sign that it was exactly the direction the song should go.





iEDM: What sparked the idea for your artist name as XIE and can you break down how it is pronounced ‘Shay’?

XIE: It is Chinese and my mother’s maiden name, as well as my middle name. In English, it’s pronounced “Shay.” Going by XIE gives me the opportunity to represent my Asian heritage and connect with it every day.

XIE, C'est La Vie, Birds In Paradise

iEDM: How has your Asian heritage played a role in your musical identity and signature sound?

XIE: I think it shows mostly in my mindset and background. Growing up in a super artistic and scholastic family, I gained a lot of knowledge practicing many mediums of art and music. Discipline was ingrained in my DNA, and I definitely credit that to helping me be able to learn production and grow as a musician and creative all around.


iEDM: You are always repping a dope hairstyle! If you had to pick one, what would be your go-to and why?

XIE: Haha, thank you! It really feels like my hair is an extension of my soul at this point, and I have a lot of fun experimenting with various hairstyles. I have always been fascinated with learning hair techniques since I was a little girl – I remember teaching myself how to french braid on the bus to elementary school.

My favorite signature look is a Dutch French braid (inside out); it is just so clean, and I can have fun adding hair ornaments and other accessories to it. Also, not only is it protective for my long hair but when I let it out it leaves the best waves.

XIE, C'est La Vie, Birds In Paradise

iEDM: What have been your favorite outfits that you have worn during a performance? What are some of your top street-wear brands and fits right now?

XIE: One of my favorites of recent was the skirt and crop top set I handmade for Lost In Dreams in Vegas last year. I had ordered a longline T online but did not love the fit so I cut it in two. Then I layered it into a matching set and it turned out better than I expected! I love a DIY moment, there is something so unique, one of a kind, and personal when I can make clothing and accessories myself.

I am a complete sucker for dope streetwear. Comfort is everything and I live for a sexy tomboy moment. Some of my favorite brands right now are Kappa, Supreme, Nike, and The Hundreds.


iEDM: What are your pre- or post-set rituals? Is there anything you consistently do when preparing for shows?

XIE: Before shows I really just try to zen out and meditate. Sometimes if I have friends or a green room full of people there, that just comes in the form of focusing on my breathing and envisioning my performance mentally.

Even though I always feel prepared, nerves are inevitable leading up to my set time with all the waiting around, so I usually have a few drinks and try to relax. Stretching never hurts either! I have a ritual every single night to spend at least 20 minutes stretching and resetting my body.


iEDM: Are there any upcoming projects or collabs you can hint at for your fans to get excited about? What do you hope to accomplish as an artist in the next six months?

XIE: I am releasing my debut EP at the end of the summer so there will be a lot more new XIE music coming! Also, some exciting things I cannot talk about just yet ;)


Photos courtesy of XIE


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Fueled by his passion for EDM, Connor’s life revolves around dance music and its ability to bring people together. Raised in upstate New York, Connor was deprived of festivals and raves until he attended Florida State University, where he was instantly hooked. Fast-forward to today and Connor has become a house and melodic techno DJ, an avid EDM-based interviewer and writer, and has worked PR for the likes of Matroda, Bleu Clair, and other new-wave house icons.

Outside of music, Connor loves pretty much any sport (huge Knicks, Yankees, and NY Giants fan), going on hikes, traveling, and food. Based in Florida, there’s a good chance you will eventually run into Connor at one of the popular festivals and clubs throughout the state.

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