Charlie Lim and the talent factory
The popular local singer is raising the next generation of Charlie-like talents.
He is an iTunes topping singer-songwriter who has more than 1.3 million plays on Spotify. He has also played for key music festivals such as The Gathering and the Mosaic Music Festival during his seven-city tour across Asia.
And now, local musician Charlie Lim, 27, is mentor to up and coming young singers and musicians.
Charlie, alongside fellow popular local artistes like ShiGGa Shay and Shorya Sharma, is one of the mentors for SHINE Festival this year. His responsibility this year is to mentor bittymacbeth, 22, a rising star who has produced well-known songs such as ‘Beauty For Ashes’.
It is not Charlie’s first experience as a mentor.
“I’ve always had an interest in helping the next generation, and figured that if I could help this way, why not?” said Charlie, who started mentoring for SHINE Festival last year.
As he talks animatedly about his experience working with Beth, it becomes clear that Charlie, who has spent his whole childhood going on a music-related study endeavour, enjoys his new role.
“I think the biggest similarity I see between me and Beth is that we both are very DIY people, almost to the point where we feel the need to do everything ourselves,” he said.
He added: “One thing that I’m trying to advise her on, is that she doesn’t necessarily have to do everything on her own. Sometimes, her job is to delegate the work, so she can take a step back and see the bigger picture.
“These are just little bits of advice I wish I was told when I was younger, so that I could be less of a control freak,” said Charlie, as he spoke fondly of his experience thus far as a mentor.
“I guess the best part of this is there is a lot of nostalgia involved, watching someone go through the same path as you did, and being able to interact and share your ideas.
“When I was younger, I never really had that kind of mentorship. I had a few mentors, but they were all a lot older than me, and did not go through the same paths that I did. So I was more than happy to know I could give back this way,” said Charlie.
He explains that due to the time constraints, he has only managed to have three or four practise sessions with Beth over the past three months.
However, Charlie was quick to add that his mentoring does not end after the SHINE Festival. “She already has my contact, and we are going to catch up over the internet and all even after this.
“I still keep in contact with my mentees from last year; it is an on-going mentoring that isn’t simply restricted to the sessions we are allocated. It is more beneficial because I am able to track their growth over time,” he said.
So, what are some challenges he has faced as a mentor to younger singers?
“Our schedules are pretty crazy, and the only sacrifice seems to be time, but that isn’t really a problem,” replied Charlie, who will be playing at Beach Best Fest in August, together with English producer Mark Ronson and Australian musician Ta-ku.
“However, being able to raise the next generation of musicians and songwriters, and being able to add value to them gives me a very deep sense of purpose,” Charlie added.
That sense of purpose, coupled with what he calls his “on-going relationship with music” motivates him.
“Just the pure joy of creating something from nothing makes me want to keep working on my craft. It’s a paradox; because I write personal tunes. Surprisingly though, because it is personal, it becomes relatable too. Knowing that it can inspire people and affect them positively means a lot to me,” he said.
Catch Charlie Lim’s mentee showcase on Jul 3 at The Coliseum (Ngee Ann City), at 7.15pm. He will be performing thereafter with his band The Mothership at The ION Stage, at 9.15pm.