Exclusive Interview: See Sza Blossom

 

by Andrea K. Castillo

Her voice is sweet and her lyrics are filled with emotion. Her music digs deeper than the surface, and is crafted with precision. Her name is Sza and she is here to share her music and herself to the world. Take a glimpse inside her mind in this interview with Giant Step contributor, Andrea K. Castillo.

I first became familiar with your EP through Giant Step and I immediately downloaded, and I listened, and listened, and thought, “Wow, this is really great! Let me learn more about this girl.” So I read all your press stuff and decided to do an interview, so here it is. We’re in the time of Sza. Your EP, See Sza Run, has been out for a few weeks now, tell me a little bit about the process, I know you worked with a bunch of different producers, how was that experience?

Sza: Super. A lot of these happened by chance. You’d be surprised at how any people don’t give you beats or don’t give you permission for anything, so I pretty much stole three-quarters of my project. Once they [the producers] heard it, they weren’t as angry with me. It was definitely interesting, I was like “That sounds good, MINE!”, and just ran with it.

So it’s seven tracks, and when listening it is very atmospheric and I can see what you are talking about. It’s a little dark, but I like that, and your lyrics are very refined. How long have you been writing?

Sza: That’s a really good question. I’ve been a writer, prior to singing or anything, for a very long time. That was my strong suit. Even in high school I was in AP English…writing is my thing. I’m a serious reader and heavily into poetry, so before I even opened my mouth and thought “Maybe I should try to translate this into something, it’s crowded in here”, I had to find a way to get these thoughts out of my brain.

You paint a picture with your words, and in regards to your visuals, I noticed across the board there are a lot of flowers; the album artwork, the music videos. Can you tell us more about your choice to use floral imagery in your work?

Sza: My mom was somewhat of a botanist, so gardening, plant life, that’s all her sh*t, and my dad was super into science. I went to school for science, so I love plant life and wild life. Knowing a lot about flowers and what they represent and the energy they bring…I use a lot of tiger lilies in my work because they used to grow in my backyard all the time; those are my favorite, they’re so pretty.

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Read the rest of the interview after the jump

New Release: Analog Players Society – ‘Hurricane Season In Brooklyn’

 

Analog Players Society today release Hurricane Season In Brooklyn, their lush and rich new album that bursts with flavor.

The beauty of the Analog Players Society is the impressive array of artists that comprise the collective. Led by Amon, who’s who musicians from around the Brooklyn music scene jumped in on this project. Players include members from TV On The Radio, Tortured Soul, Escort, Beirut, Si*Se, Blitz the Ambassador and Akoya Afrobeat Ensemble.

The sounds are a colorful medley of funk, afrobeat, soul, and dub. Yum. Stream the entire project below and enjoy!

Purchase Hurricane Season In Brooklyn on iTunes | Amazon

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‘Red Hot + Rio 2′ In Stores Today + MP3

RH Loft Party: Mia Doi Todd + José González from Red Hot on Vimeo.

Red Hot + Rio 2 is out today! This modern tribute to the late 60′s Brazilian Tropicália movement sheds new light on the songs of this influential, politically charged era, which changed the culture of the country forever. Featuring an impressive 33 original collaborations between Brazilian legends and international indie artists alike, the album features: John Legend, Alice Smith, Aloe Blacc, Cults, Angelique Kidjo, Os Mutantes, Devendra Banhart, Caetano Veloso, Seu Jorge, Beck, Bebel Gilberto, José González, Beirut, Tom Zé, Javelin, Of Montreal, Marisa Monte, Madlib, and others. Red Hot + Rio 2 is the Red Hot Organization’s most recent project aimed raising money for HIV/AIDS awareness and prevention.

Mia Doi Todd + José González – “Um Girassol da Cor do Seu Cabelo” [MP3]
 

Purchase Red Hot + Rio 2 on iTunes | Amazon

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Red Hot + Rio 2 Out June 28th + Listening Party in LA

 

We at Giant Step are so excited about this release. Red Hot + Rio 2 is a musical compilation aimed at raising money for HIV/AIDS awareness and prevention. Succeeding the original Bossa Nova inspired 1996 tribute, Red Hot + Rio, this release pays homage to the late 60’s Brazilian Tropicália movement and sheds “new light on the songs of this influential, politically charged era, which changed the culture of the country forever.”

Featuring over 33 original collaborations between legendary Brazilian musicians and other international talents, Red Hot + Rio 2 will leave you overwhelmingly content with its audible treats; this roster showcases many beloved musicians, including Madlib, Bebel Gilberto, Quadron, José Gonzalez, Alice Smith, Beck, Seu Jorge, and John Legend, amongst countless others.

more + listening party after the jump

Red Hot + Rio 2 Coming This Summer


Red Hot in partnership with Entertainment One Music is set to release Red Hot + Rio 2 on June 28th. A modern tribute to late 60’s Brazilian Tropicália movement, the album will shed new light on the songs of this influential, politically charged era, which changed the culture of the country forever.

The Red Hot Organization is known for two (very important) things: 1/ having impeccable musical taste; and 2/ the ability to channel that taste into projects that successfully raise some serious money to combat HIV/AIDES. Compilations like Dark Was The Night (2009), and Red Hot & Riot (2002), all the way back to the first Red Hot + Rio (1996) have successfully raised over a million dollars and featured star studded line-ups that reminds one of the Grammys.

Red Hot + Rio 2 features over 30 original collaborations between Brazil’s legendary musicians and today’s international indie artists including John Legend, Os Mutantes, Devendra Banhart, Caetano Veloso, Dirty Projectors, Seu Jorge, Beck, Bebel Gilberto, José Gonzalez, Beirut, Tom Zé, Of Montreal, Marisa Monte, Gogol Bordello, DJ Dolores, Aloe Blacc, Angelique Kidjo, Rita Lee, Madlib, Money Mark, Céu, Apollo Nove, Mayra Andrade, Trio Mocotó, Tha Boogie, Alice Smith, Carlinhos Brown, Los Van Van, Brazilian Girls, Marcos Valle, St. Vincent, Neon Indian, Forró In The Dark, Mia Doi Todd, Javelin, and many more.

Check out Beirut’s lead singer Zach Condon’s cover of “O Leãozinho” (Originally sung by Caetano Veloso) after the jump.

More after the jump