Interview: Sayed Sabrina
Thank you for sharing some time with our readers today, what have you been up to in 2019?
Hello and thank you. 2019 has been a year of continuous work on recording my new album, Thou Art That. It has been a journey of self discovery. Allowing myself to be vulnerable in a new way. I produced, wrote, played piano, and sang on all pieces. Trusting in my own abilities and ear for the final outcome. Of which I am very proud of. It’s my passion project. I was blessed to have some talented people work on this album. From engineer, Alfonso Rodenas, to each and every player that put their efforts and soul into the songs, to the wonderful ES Audio Recording Studio and Donny Baker.
The songs are a reflection of my life, both lyrically and musically. I have included lyrics on both vinyl and CD. The musical style is best described as blues infused jazz rock funk with a splash of country and whole heartedness. We didn’t record with auto tune or digital beats. Each sound is a real persons performance that has honed their craft and worked hard to sound stellar.
Next move is to continue playing live and keep recording. I have a lot more songs I’d like to share. It’s been a wonderful journey so far.
Who have been your greatest musical influences?
I have always loved classic jazz and early blues and rock n’ roll. Some of my greatest musical influences have been Ella Fitzgerald, Anita O’Day, Etta James, Dinah Washington they moved my soul and I wanted to sound like them and singers like KoKo Taylor, Patti Smith, Wendy O’Williams, Janis Joplin,Nina Haagen, and Chrissy Hynde and Joan Jett made me want to front a rock n’ roll band, sing the blues and never turn back.
Tell us more about your latest musical release!
Thou Art That was recorded with the listener in mind. Place some earphones on your head or turn it up and hang out with us a bit. Each song was placed in an order that was purposeful. I played my father’s piano on every song but Home is in Your Head. For that song I’m on my trusty Nord.
The album begins bold with The Pedestrian. Short song with a punch. Side A ends with a blast and Side B has a promising comeback till the last song, Grande Illusion comes in dramatically and wishes it could stay longer. You can always put it on repeat.
Putting this album together and watching it go out into the world has been quite the experience. From the very beginning I have stayed true to the sound. The “sound” being what it was I heard when I first wrote the songs sitting at my piano. I really enjoyed the whole process. I’ve recorded many times in the past and have to say that this time around when I decided to trust myself and do it the way I was hearing it from beginning to end was the right choice. I am excited that the album is doing well. It has been a journey with many lessons learned along the way. One being to have more faith and trust with oneself.
Where do you seek inspiration as a writer and as a singer?
As a person that likes to compose and sing I find inspiration from most anything. Songs can be written about mundane objects to huge catastrophes. I write about everything. It’s what I do. What I’ve always done. I write poetry and enjoy eclectic sounds that I can create organically. My inspiration is usually what I am experiencing in the moment. I do like to meditate and I will many times write my most powerful songs from those moments. I’ll cry while writing. It just happens sometimes. I loose track of time easily while being creative. An hour becomes many in a blink of an eye. Creating music comes easily to me, it’s everything else in life that is sometimes difficult for me.
With such a busy schedule, how do you find the time to have fun, cut loose and enjoy life?
With the busy schedule I have I don’t have much of a social life. When I have time off I spend it with my family and my two dogs. Sometimes I will go out to a friends show or a local jam. I love live music. It is a magical exchange to be onstage or in the audience. It’s something our ancient ancestors did that we still take part of today. The beat of the heart and drum. We are born into this world having this connection. So yes, I love live music. I also enjoy spending my free time in nature. Anytime I get to hang out near the ocean or mountains I’m a happy girl.
When we follow our dreams in life, there are sacrifices. What do you find to be the greatest sacrifices and the greatest gifts of your career so far?
I find that the biggest sacrifices I have made based on my career choice has been other opportunities that I have let pass me by. Such as a regular nine to five job with a paycheck I can count on. Basic needs not being met because being a working musician doesn’t pay well most of the time. Raising a family on little to no income is rough. We made it work because one of the most careless things I could do as a mother and role model would be to give up on my personal dreams. I believe music has given me the freedom to be who I am truly meant to be. It allows me to stay true to myself. That to me is the biggest gift I could receive. I am blessed to be doing what I love to do. Hard work mixed with purpose and passion and a knowing that I am doing what I am meant to be doing. I have been gifted with many things in life. The struggle is part of the gift. It hasn’t been easy. Especially while breaking rules and doing it my way. I’m not there yet although I am enjoying the ride and I’m not quite sure where “ there” is. So far, the most recent gifts I’ve received are people listening and responding well to the songs I’ve written. It means the world to me to share what I know how to do and it be received well.
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End of Interview