December 5, 2022
Born in North London, multi instrumentalist, composer, performer and sound artist; S.A.A.R.A, began her career in music as a bass player.  Now, as a solo artist, she cobinnes her influences; Fela Kuti, Kate Bush, Bjork, Sly and the Family Stone, to name a few, to make genre defiant music.  Described as “orchestral funk” (Ollie Winiberg, BBC Essex Introducing) S.A.A.R.A weaves hypnotic bass lines around big beats, synth hooks, and woodwind riffs before floating her distinctive vocals through the mix. You are commanded to DANCE!

Lisa: Hello S.A.A.R.A! If someone asked you to describe your music, besides
genres, what would you say?

S.A.A.R.A: If Blondie and Fela Kuti went on holiday together and made friends with Little Dragon by the pool.

Lisa: What types of change do you feel your music can initiate?

S.A.A.R.A: I guess I would like to see, well be part of a change, that sees more female musicians, producers, performers getting the billing and recognition they deserve. I would love to be working in an industry where you are assumed to be capable, rather than in need of a male opinion!

Lisa: You’ve began your career in music as a bass player. I love the bass, it is my favorite instrument. What drove you to this instrument?

S.A.A.R.A: I actually think the bass found me! I was hanging about with some pals at school who had made a band. When the appointed bass player fell through, they asked me if I’d be up for it. At the time, my only instrument was clarinet, I’d never even contemplated playing the bass but they had every confidence in me that I’d pick it up no problem. I’ll never forget my poor mums face when I explained to her that had I swapped my clarinet for an electric bass, quit the school orchestra, and was now in a punk band! I’m so glad that serendipity was out and about that day!!

Lisa: I loved your upcoming single “Grace Jones”. What inspired you to write it?

S.A.A.R.A: Hehe, that’s between me and Grace Jones! 😛

Lisa: Your EP is also soon to be released. What can we expect? Is there a theme that connects the songs, or is it something else?

S.A.A.R.A: The songs on the EP all have a theme of transition. To get this project off the ground, I had to face up to a lot of insecurities and fears in order to work out what I want to achieve musically and how to make it happen.

Lisa: You have very unique vocals. Was it a hard process in discovering your
voice? Do you practice every day?

S.A.A.R.A: I have always been really shy about my voice, but I also have a habit of bursting into song, particularly when I get a bit stressed (LOL). It took me some time to get comfortable with my
voice as an instrument and celebrate its individuality. I take my inspiration from singers who may not necessarily be ‘technically’ brilliant but are captivating none the less. I do try and practise every day; I am still learning about vocal technique in terms of making the most of my instrument and singing safely.

Lisa: What is the most useless talent you have?

S.A.A.R.A: To use song lyrics in conversations… Oh and also I am addicted to puns!

Lisa: How do you nourish your creative side when you’re not working? And how do you avoid burnout?

S.A.A.R.A: I find it useful to visit art exhibitions – it’s a great way to engage with some stillness and peacefulness. I have also learnt to trust my own creative process and not pressure myself to start and finish a song in a day!! I’ve let go of chasing perfection and now know that what I do musically is a constantly evolving process.

Lisa: What advice or philosophy might you impart to other musicians, be it in
forms of creativity, technical stuff, the business side of it, or anything else?

S.A.A.R.A: Just do it! If you have the inclination, no matter how deep its buried, it won’t go away. So, go with it, just start, make the music you want to hear, have fun with the creative process and don’t compare yourself to others. It’s easy to feel intimidated by all the tech, but I find it useful to remember that there are no set rules with what tech you want to use or how to use it. Experiment!

Lisa: What’s next for you?

S.A.A.R.A: We have a few socially-distanced live shows coming up in the next few weeks and we are so excited to be able to play live!! Then, we have more releases to come from the forth coming EP, including some exciting remixes!! Beyond that, we have sights on the next EP and will be hoping to get on some festival bills next year.

Lisa: At the end of the day, what do you hope people take away from your music?

S.A.A.R.A: I have always wanted to be in a band that makes music for people to dance to. Dancing is such a freeing experience – there are no rules, it makes you feel great and anyone can do it. That sense of freedom is what I would hope people take away form my music.

Thank you!

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