Her stint on The Voice of Ireland may have come to a halt, but for pint-sized rapper Nicola Lynch from Ballycroy the journey has only just begun, as already she has been offered record deals.
Nicola is both amazed and delighted at the amount of people who want to work with her, but because she’s still signed to Universal it’s making things increasingly difficult, “It’s hard to pick them up now because I’m still signed to Universal. I’ve tried to contact them and tell them and say ‘let me go’, but they might be keeping me under contract and want to work with me.”
Nicola says that this situation has left her feeling a little lost, and stressing about the future “By the time I get told if I can be released from Universal, my offers I get now could be gone.” She says that all she wants is an answer to whether or not Universal are going to sign her, and jokes that they should know by now.
Nicola was quickly snapped up by Judge Una Foden during the auditions, who immediately recognised her unique talent and rapping skills. But rapping wasn’t something that she always did, and she says that she picked it up after hearing her brother doing it, “just to stand out a little”.
Beginning to sing from a very young age, her family always knew that she had talent. Her younger sister Jade recalls a time when Nicola was the angel in a nativity play back in National School, commenting on how wonderful she was.
Coming from a family of 15, which Nicola describes as “crazy”, means that she always had a large support group that constantly stick together, “Someone’s always experiencing something different in the house, so you’re going through the same as what they’re going through.” She says that they are a constant source of motivation and urge her not to give up on her dream, “I think I want it more because of them.”
But it’s not only her family and community that have gotten behind her. Nicola says that while attending national school, she received a huge amount of musical encouragement from her teacher Leona Conway. She says that she got her to enter competitions, sing for school plays, and even join the choir. She says this is what really got her into singing, and other people made her realise that she really did have talent, “I liked people telling me that they thought I was good!”
Nicola admits that working so hard only to be knocked out during the battles left her feeling a little defeated, but the worst thing was leaving behind all the friends that she’d made on her journey, “That’s one of the hardest things of leaving the competition, actually leaving them, it’s like you’re leaving your family behind.” She struggled to say goodbye to them but has stayed close to many of the amazing people that she met.
On this year’s show, they introduced the ‘Knockouts’ stage, something that’s never been done before. Nicola feels that this is where it may have went wrong for her, and says that she feels she would have gone further in the competition if it was down to votes because Mayo would get behind her, “I didn’t actually know it was knockouts. They kept it really secretive! When I found out I was against Niall and Chloe I was like, ‘I’m gone’.”
Speaking about the comments Bressie made that her rapping wasn’t clear on the night, Nicola reflects back on how she felt, “I was really pissed off at that, like really pissed off. Going on live TV and saying that, and to be told it was all for entertainment.” However she decided not to listen to him after getting positive feedback from the other three judges, as well as her fans, “I didn’t bother with Bressie, and not everyone listens to him anyways. I don’t listen to him. I thought at first I would have, but no.”
Her sister Jade also said that Nicola was very hurt by the comments, “For Bressie to say that kind of put her down.” But the offer she received only the day after she left The Voice put her back in good spirits. Jade said that she’s been asked to work with people who have dealings with shows such as Geordie Shore and The Valleys, “She was asked yeah, for a few people. I think the producer or something to do with Geordie Shore for some television kind of thing.”
Nicola knows that this is just the beginning for her, and already has solid plans set out for the future and is adamant to make it in the music industry, “I think I’ll keep trying now. I’m going to try to write a lot more of my own stuff and maybe with other artists. I think if you go along with other people that have a fan base you’ll build off them, and I think you need to go out and work now as hard as you can. My face is out there now, I think I need to just work around that and keep on it.”