Sydney Blu Releases New Album in Midst of the Pandemic
By Jamie Varga, Photos by Ded Agency
Hard work and dedication are the main ingredients to most success stories. But I think it is fair to say that large amounts of those two things are even more important when coming from a relatively isolated region. Joanne Hill, better known as Sydney Blu, is a prime example of this—and that whole premise of a strong work ethic is what led to the name of her latest album, Conviction, which was released in March.
Leaving Thunder Bay shortly after high school, Blu found her way into the underground electronic music scene, and to say that she flourished would be an understatement. Making a name for herself in Toronto, she quickly rose through the ranks, started touring heavily, and found herself sharing stages with the likes of DeadMau5, Hot Since 82, Kevin Saunderson, and Roger Sanchez. After spending time as the resident DJ at Toronto’s The Guvernment nightclub, she took up an offer to relocate to South Beach’s hottest club at the time, Mansion Miami.
Her presence in the electronic music scene continued to grow from there. Blu soon found herself moving from Miami to Los Angeles and then in 2019, she crossed the pond to Europe and set up shop in Berlin. This is where she started working on the follow-up to her album Relentless, while playing live shows in front of the European electronic music scene’s large crowds. She had been planning to settle in Berlin for a while, but those plans quickly changed as her North American tour screeched to a halt due to COVID-19. She decided instead to return home to Thunder Bay to ride out the pandemic and focus on finishing her new project.
Since its release, Conviction has received a lot of industry praise, and several of the initial tracks are gaining chart traction. The singles “Monologue” featuring Fritz Helder, and “Conspiracy” and “To the Ground” with Jeny Vega are leading the charge out of the gate. It is fantastic to see somebody from home go out into the world and not only be a success but become a benchmark by which other successes are measured. Hopefully our COVID-tainted world takes a turn for the better and Blu can get back at it, but it is good to see that a little Conviction goes a long way.