Ishmael Grech: ‘Play me in a film? Ed Sheeran. We’re both ginger performers’

Singer Ishmael Grech tells all in our Q&A

Ishmael Grech
Ishmael Grech

Singer Ishmael Grech has been singing and acting since the age of four, when he became a supporting actor in the leading television series Sossy. In 2006, and 2007, Ishmael made it to the final stages of the Malta Junior Eurovision Song Contest 2006 and Malta Junior Eurovision Song Contest 2007 with the songs My Life and I Believe, which he penned himself. Both showed his distinctive vocal range, and were received well by both the judges and the audience. In 2019 Ishmael was one of the finalists of the 43rd edition of L-Għanja tal-Poplu 2019 – Festival tal-Kanzunetta Maltija with the song Fil-Klassi. In 2021, he made it to the final of Konkors Kanzunetta Indipendenza with the song Bla Ħafna Reċti.

What’s the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning?

Make myself a cup of coffee then rush to the gym before a day of work at the salon.

What is the best advice you’ve ever received?

This one is easy: to follow my dreams and do whatever makes me happy.

What do you never leave the house without?

If it’s just the one thing, definitely my phone.

Pick three words that describe yourself

Fun. Hyper. Positive (always trying to put a smile on other people’s faces).

What do you consider to be your greatest achievement?

Being both a barber and a singer is everything I could ever ask for. There’s no way I would choose either as the most important in life.

What is your guiltiest pleasure?


What is the most important lesson life has taught you?

Life has taught me several lessons, but believing in yourself and never losing sight of your goals is definitely at the top of the list.

Property and cars aside what’s the most expensive thing you’ve ever bought?

My phone, which, as I previously said, I cannot live without.

What is one thing you wish you knew when you were younger?

I wish I knew that I was going to be a barber, as it has really set me on my path in life.

Who’s your inspiration?

My mother and father are two of my biggest inspirations. They have supported me through thick and thin, having my back in everything I do.

What has been your biggest challenge?

Achieving the goals I set for myself in singing. My vocal coaches have always driven me to succeed, and, as a result, I push myself even further.

If you weren’t a singer, what would you be doing?

A lot of people tell me that I am very good with children, so — combining that with my life in the arts — I would choose to be a music or a drama teacher.

Do you believe in God?

Yes, I do.

If you could have dinner with any person, dead or alive, who would it be?

I wouldn’t choose anyone famous but I’d choose my late grandparents, people dear to me.

What’s your worst habit?

While not entirely sure whether this would be considered a habit, I dislike the fact that I want to do everything right — especially when most things in life are not down to us, but depend on other people’s decisions.

What are you like when you’re drunk?

It’s better that I don’t share this information, but truth be told, it hasn’t happened in a while.

Who would you have play you in a film?

I have thought about this long and hard, even before doing this Q&A. My pick for the role would be Ed Sheeran, since we’re both ginger performers.

What is the trait you most deplore in others?

I cannot stand people who say one thing and then do the exact opposite.

What music would you have played at your funeral?

It might be a random choice for some people, but it’s one of my most favourite songs: The Show Must Go On.

What is your most treasured material possession?

Again, an easy answer for this one. It has to be my cars; I consider them family.

When did you last cry, and why?

When my grandfather passed away. It was quite an experience.

Who would you most like to meet?

Tom Jones. I just love performing his music, whether it’s What’s New Pussycat? or She’s a Lady.

What’s your favourite food?

Pasta, and it doesn’t have to be anything specific...

If you could travel in time, where would you go?

My grandfather’s car races, combining the things I love the most.

If you could have any superpower, what would it be?

The power to make people happy.

What’s one thing you want to do before you die?

I would love to go on a long holiday with those whom I love the most.

What music are you listening to at the moment?

Maltese Rap.

In the shower or when you’re working out, what do you sing/listen to?

Those who know me well will know that I love listening to Maltese songs, so I’ll stick to that as my answer.