DELTA GOODREM tops our annual definitive list of Australia’s most influential, talented, beautiful and newsworthy women of the year. In our exclusive photo shoot and interview she discusses facing adversity, her new music, being crowned the 2020 Ultra Tune MAXIM HOT 100 winner and what this crazy pandemic-filled year has meant to her…
Congratulations on topping the 2020 Ultra Tune MAXIM HOT 100 list, Delta. How does it feel to be No.1?
I feel incredibly thankful to the readers. This is a great era of my life and a wonderful honour to receive. I am grateful to be listed alongside so many other terrific individuals who are beautiful inside and out.
You’ve had many number ones in your career. How does this one compare?
I held this title from MAXIM a few years ago very proudly and getting the news again literally made my year. This is definitely a highlight of 2020!
Yes, you were the MAXIM HOT 100 No.1 in 2015. What’s changed for you in five years?
It’s unbelievable how much can change in just one year. In the past five years I have grown and learned so much and continued to evolve into the person I am today. I am really proud of who I am and I feel secure in the person I have become. I feel free to embrace all the different sides of my authentic self.
What would people be most surprised to know about you?
I work extremely hard. All that we create and put out only comes together with a tremendous amount of hard work. I also think that I am more playful than people realise but also more straight shooting then you may expect. I started in acting and music when I was very young and since I was with adults all the time, people automatically thought I was shy and as a teenager I think people thought I was serious. I am a serious artist, but I like to have a good laugh along the way.
You look absolutely beautiful in this MAXIM shoot — when do you feel sexy?
I feel sexiest and happiest after I have worked hard for a goal and achieved what I set out to do. There is a confidence when you see your dreams come to fruition and that’s when I am feeling my best inside and out.
What’s your best asset?
I think my best asset is my capacity to care and feel empathy and kindness. Beauty starts from within and I am grateful that my parents raised me to be deeply caring and compassionate for other people.
Here at MAXIM the word “hot” encapsulates so many meanings — from being inspirational to talented to physical appearance. What’s your secret to maintaining your hotness?
I think it’s about being passionate and driven and having fun while also encouraging everyone to step up to the plate and be the best they can be. To create that fire, passion and energy in the room is hot.
Despite the whole pandemic thing, you’ve had a great year. What are your biggest highlights?
How much I have learned! I was never one to lean into technology but this era has forced me to learn technology and find new ways of sharing music and connecting with people around the world from my living room. I have learned more this year. Time teaches us that you have to adapt to change and that change is going to come no matter what, so we better adapt and embrace it.
How have you kept yourself busy during these crazy COVID-19 days?
I have stayed very busy this whole year. In the very beginning of lockdown I tried to embrace the work from home life by taking up hobbies, languages and cleaning the cupboards. After some not so great attempts at baking, I realised it was best to get back to being creative and turned to music and writing and recording nearly every day and have been releasing new music throughout. Global Citizen together with Lady Gaga reached out and invited me to perform as part of the online One World: Together At Home festival in support of the COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund for the World Health Organization. On Anzac Day, it was such an honour to co-host the Music From The Home Front live music event broadcast, and performed ‘Down Under’ with Men At Work’s Colin Hay. I also started The Bunkerdown Sessions as a way to stay connected with everyone from around the world and to provide something to look forward to each week through the healing power of music. We did live-streamed performances for 25 weeks and it’s been an incredible experience. Launching the Delta Goodrem Foundation, which focuses on spreading kindness, hope and support for those facing illness, hardship and inequality has certainly been a highlight in 2020. I am very proud to have partnered with St Vincent’s Hospital on our first initiative in cellular therapy research for cancer treatment.
Brilliant. You’ve overcome so much adversity in your life. What’s your secret to keep on keeping on?
The reality of life is that we all have to keep going, even when it’s tough. We have to take it one step at a time. I am no different to anyone else that at times I keep having to pick myself up and continue to keep moving my life forward. You always have to keep the faith and have hope. Throughout our lifetime we encounter all sorts of adversities, but I think it comes down to attitude and how you see the positive in each experience while never giving up faith that you can get through anything.
What we can expect from your new album?
It started with my personal reset and that transformation really inspired my writing. This album is about coming into my own as a woman. Going back to where it all started in my life and career. I did a lot of self-reflection that led to me speaking my truths in song, in ways I never have before. This album is incredibly personal, raw and honest. I have opened up and shared stories that I have not shared before and people have really resonated to the transparency and vulnerability. It’s also very rooted in musicianship and I started every song on the piano or guitar.
Got any big plans for the rest of 2020 once this coronavirus is sorted?
The rest of the year is going to continue to be very busy. I have lots of exciting projects that I can’t wait to share with everyone and I have already announced my Bridge Over Troubled Dreams Tour throughout Australia and New Zealand in 2021.
Where do you see yourself in five years?
I have no idea actually! Hopefully doing something epic, amazing, fun and surrounded by love.
What is your motto in life?
I absolutely love this quote from Mother Teresa and has been one of my guiding mottos lately.
“People are often unreasonable, irrational, and self-centered. Forgive them anyway.
If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives. Be kind anyway.
If you are successful, you will win some unfaithful friends and some genuine enemies. Succeed anyway.
If you are honest and sincere people may deceive you. Be honest and sincere anyway.
What you spend years creating, others could destroy overnight. Create anyway.
If you find serenity and happiness, some may be jealous. Be happy anyway.
The good you do today, will often be forgotten. Do good anyway.
Give the best you have, and it will never be enough. Give your best anyway.
In the final analysis, it is between you and God. It was never between you and them anyway”.
Finally, do you have a message for MAXIM readers?
I want to say a huge thank you to all of the MAXIM readers. This was an amazing surprise and particularly special with everything going on this year. ■
FULL NAME: Delta Goodrem
BORN: November 9
HOMETOWN: Sydney, NSW
FIVE-WORD SELF-DESCRIPTION: “Authentic, loyal, compassionate, playful and creative.”
Photographed by CARLOTTA MOYE
Interview by SANTI PINTADO
Styled by JESS PECORARO
Hair by DIANE GORGIEVSKI
Make-Up By NONI SMITH-FINLAY