Yana is a superb musician hailing from the Czech Republic. Her latest single ‘Reach Out’ is taken from her highly anticipated debut album which is due for release in the autumn. Read the full review now!
Hi Yana, what is your earliest music memory?
My mum singing me some of her favourite folk songs when I was a little girl.
Who or what got you into music?
Karel Zich, my first musical hero, is to thank. He was a wonderful singer and a master of the twelve-string guitar; I fell in love with the sound when I first heard it. Of course, it takes a real skill to be able to play it properly.
As time went on, Karel and myself became friends, which was a great honour and something I will never forget. He sadly passed away in 2004, but I think of him every time I pick up the guitar because, without his encouragement, I would never be where I am.
Who influenced your latest release, ‘Reach Out’?
Nobody in particular, it was just a reaction to the outside world. I feel that mental health is an important issue that needs to be addressed and talked about. So the song should serve as an encouragement to anybody who needs it.
‘Reach Out’ is taken from your upcoming debut album, can you tell us any more about the full release?
I am realising the biggest dream yet with this album. All the songs have a similar theme, so I guess we can call it a concept album. There are different instruments on every song, with the exception of two. The album is also a combination of collaboration offers placed and received.
You are from the Czech Republic; what’s the music scene like?
Overall, I would say the scene here isn’t as competitive as it is, for example in London or other places. We have amazing musicians in different genres. Unfortunately, there are not as many open mics as on the British Isles, so upcoming artists have it harder to spread the word about their work yet; in my opinion, if you keep knocking on the door long enough, it will open.
Who would you most like to collaborate with?
Some of my collaboration dreams have already come true in the past. Others are coming true at the moment with the album. There are people I would have loved to work with, but it can’t be done because those people are not here anymore.
I’m particularly referring to Fergus O’Farrell, the late frontman of Interference, my dear friend and biggest songwriting influence, and Mic Christopher, whom I never had a chance to know, but his songs have a massive impact on my songwriting, and I feel I’m getting to know him a bit that way.
What’s your dream venue to play?
Coughlan’s or St. Luke’s. Both in Cork, Ireland.
Other than music, what are you passionate about?
Languages. One of the things I can honestly say I am good at. I am fluent in three, with the basics of a few more.
I am a big snooker fan, thanks to my mum who put me on watching the sport. That led to me travelling to various tournaments in the UK and seeing the sport live, meeting some of my favourite players.
I’m also a passionate traveller; I feel alive when I’m on the road exploring new places.
What changes would you like to see in the music business?
The attitude from the general public who dismisses the creative people because they don’t have stable work hours. But I feel those who don’t want to will never be willing to understand or respect it.
How do you feel about how the internet plays a role in today’s music business?
Internet is a good tool for networking, and nowadays, you can collaborate with someone without even meeting each other. But we all know social media can also be overwhelming.
It can be a good thing to get the word about your music out there, but the other side of it is the amount of new music and also the easy access to the recording.
Pretty much anybody can record and release songs these days; hence the real struggle is to promote your work and get the right ears to hear it.
FVMusicBlog March 2022