We were really lucky to catch up with the amazing artist Naëve following the release of ‘Joy’. Check out the interview below!
Tell us about yourself?
Hello there, I am Naëve, a singer/songwriter based in London where I moved to eight years ago. I am originally from Italy, precisely from the south, I even have a tattoo to remind me of that, just in case. I have studied singing since the age of 14 at singing academies, earning diplomas at the Conservatoire, and a degree. Liking music in general, I learnt to sing in several genres, including Opera, heavy metal (yes, I can growl!) Rock, Jazz, Soul, Gospel, Blues and many others.
I am very serious about my art; this is the only way I know to express how I feel, something that words can’t explain. I have always been quite stubborn, proud and brave. My last project is quite an ambitious hybrid genre that I created from the Old School R&B music current, mixing several different genres into one and reworking them as if they were written today.
What is your songwriting process?
I don’t have a standard way to write. Sometimes it could be from a bass line that I really like or a drumbeat (that happens often) or from a bunch of notes played on the piano. Then I improvise a vocal line on that (in English), and I record them. Once everything is in place, I write lyrics according to what that musical part makes me feel at that moment.
Tell us about your latest release?
My first official release is called ‘Joy’ and is an upbeat Gospel song on the lines of ‘the Old Landmark’ performed by James Brown in the film ‘Blues Brothers’. It is addressed to everyone who is going through something major and could benefit from a little moral support. My personal encouragement is to always see the light at the end of the tunnel, no matter how small and far it could seem.
What message do you think your music conveys to your fans?
Support, empowerment, empathy, and fun! I would like my audience to feel cared for, and I hope my music does just this.
Who are your musical influences?
Aretha Franklin is my absolute muse for my singing. I try to express the emotions she expresses and share them with other people. I absolutely love and use her ‘octave jumps’ very often. I have many other influences, and it would take literally a month to write them all down! Generally speaking, I love artists from any music genre, and any form of art that can actually make me feel something and that inspires me a whole lot.
Who are your non-musical influences?
Films, paintings, painters and anything creative. They help a lot in creating my own artistic identity. I absolutely adore Tim Burton’s films. I believe him and his team to be an absolute genius for the originality, the quirkiness, abnegation to their art and professionalism. I am also a big fan of Gustav Klimt, his paintings are really evocative, especially ‘The Maiden’ and ‘Freya’s (golden) Tears’ for me. Sometimes, people I meet, and places I visit make something click in my head that I need to write down. This is how I create my songs.
What’s the best gig that you have ever played?
It was at the Yamaha Music Store in London recently. We have been shortlisted for the semifinals first and then for the finals (that have been postponed because of the current events) for the Yamaha’s Boogie & Blues Future stars competition.
It was the first gig I did with a ten member Big Band, and we really enjoyed playing together. Supporters enjoyed that very much as well. It was quite entertaining seeing people tapping their feet and dancing around to our music in a huge music store.
What is your funniest gig moment?
It was at a battle of the bands with my previous band at the Enfield Estate in London and was a rock music contest. Mostly it was a families gathering, and I thought It could have been a good idea to keep it ‘acoustic’, considering that our setlist was pretty heavy metal-oriented and considering that the Organization asked us to do so. My fellow band members didn’t agree so; we went for the ‘heavy one’. Two minutes after our set started, I saw my drummer chasing his drumset around the stage while playing (as it wasn’t secured for a heavier set). It was really hard for me at that point to continue to sing considering the situation, but we made it, eventually.
What do you think are the biggest obstacles for bands/artists today?
Unhealthy aggressive, merciless competition. Many musicians are willing to do pretty much anything (including destroying other musicians careers) for money and fame and let the music astray. Many people often forget that it is not about their ego but about the change they are capable of making in somebody else’s life through their art.
What advice would you give to other bands/artists starting out?
Don’t do it, seriously. Just kidding. What I feel to say is that being a musician, is more a vocation than a job, and it’s always serious business. So, prepare for the hard work because blood and tears will pour like rain. You will have many doors shut right in your face. But, for those that close, there will be a bigger one opening for you so, if you are serious about what you are doing, you have to be resilient and never give up. Be the best in what you do and be willing to do better and better. Absolutely ‘don’t try to screw up’ your fellow musicians ‘to take the faster way’ because, sooner or later, is going to backfire very badly. Karma works pretty well in those circumstances, I have seen it done to other people; Karma worked its magic.
What are your hopes for the next two years?
Gigs, a lot of them. I love to play live so; hopefully, we will manage to plan a proper tour and collaborate with other like-minded artists. I would also release my debut album after a couple more singles more and see what happens next!
We wish Naëve all the best for the future and we look forward to hearing new singles soon! Until then, check out ‘Joy’ from the link below!
FVMusicBlog April 2020
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