What made you decide that music is a thing for you?
I’ve always been a singer since I was a little girl. That created a solid connection to music early in my life. I’ve also always been a huge listener of music. My parents would play music in the car, my mom would play music in the house. I would carry around my Walkman and all my favorite CDs in a big case everywhere I went- headphones on, in my own world.
Introduce us to you and your musical history?
My name is Angela Sclafani- I’m an NYC-based singer-songwriter. I’ve been writing songs since I was about nine years old and recording/releasing them since 2016. I studied theater in college and started creating and performing my own work early on. I’ve released a few EPs and a couple of singles independently. This is my first album!
Name me your 3 favorite Albums.
Hejira – Joni Mitchell
The Idler Wheel – Fiona Apple
St. Cloud – Waxahatchee
What was the first song you heard that steered you into a music path?
Dreams by Fleetwood Mac. Stevie Nicks is a favorite. She was my first concert back in 5th grade- my dad took me. Recording an EP of her hits was a fun way for me to keep making mustic during lockdown when I felt creatively blocked from songwriting.
The music industry is the hardest industry in the world to progress in, How do you feel you are doing?
It’s really tough to gain a fan base, especially if you aren’t pouring all of your time into social media- which I find to be a little soul-sucking. I do the best that I can, and I always make what I want to make. That is what is most important to me.
I’m seeing a lot of debate about women not feeling safe at music gigs, any thoughts on what we need to do to help?
Give women cab fare, walk women to the subway, don’t stand too close or walk too close behind, pretend to be their friend, and swoop in to get them out of harm’s way if they’re in a bad situation.
As you develop as an artist and develop using socials what ways do you get new ears on your music? Any tips?
I love to create a visual story that connects to the musical world of my projects. Each release has its own theme, photoshoot, font, etc. I think bringing my visions to life helps me experiment and develop my artistry. It’s hard to know who you are if you don’t try things out. Maybe that’s the silver lining to being an unknown artist- you have the time and space to make mistakes.
Tell us Two truths and a lie about you.
I have two cats.
My cats have gone viral on Instagram.
I am tall.
What’s your thought on Spotify’s monopoly on the music industry?
It’s really upsetting. I have so much respect for Joni Mitchell and her decision to take her music off Spotify. I do still use Spotify- I’ll admit that I love the “made for you” playlists. But there’s no reason why the CEO should be making millions and paying the artists pennies. Our laws haven’t caught up to today’s technology- which is the theme and problem of the past 20 years. I would love to see more major artists take a stand and fight for the rest of us.
Did you buy anything you don’t need during the pandemic?
So many vinyl records from eBay- but I have a great collection now!
What was the worst experience on stage?
I’ve been dealing with major anxiety for many years. I’ve had moments where my voice cuts off and just stops. The mental block becomes physical. It’s difficult but I’m working through it.
Tell us something about you / each member that you think people would be surprised about?
I don’t read music!
What makes you stand out as a band/artist?
I think the combination of my voice, lyricism, melodies, rhythm, and style creates a unique sound. There’s a multi-genre element to my music that makes it more difficult to put into specific playlists, but I think that is what makes it stand out. I love artists who are constantly evolving and I endeavor to be that way as well.
I hear you have new music, what can you tell us about it.
It’s my first album- it’s called Songs of Other Selves. It’s a concept album about inner child work and the many different people we evolve from and into as we age. It’s vulnerable but still playful.
Talk me through the thought process of the new tune/s.
I wrote half the songs during the lockdown and the other half over the past five years or so. I think it’s true to the concept of the album. My twenty-year-old self has a voice on this album, she wrote the first track. It is exciting to think about future me giving current me a platform down the road.
What was the recording process like?
My collaborator was Katie Buchanan. She has produced two Eps and a single of mine, so we already had a great working relationship. She is a multi-instrumentalist as well, so she recorded every instrument in her home studio. During the lockdown, I had purchased recording gear, so I was able to record my vocals from home. It gave me the time and space to build intricate harmonies and vocal lines.
What was the biggest learning curve in writing the new tunes?
In a few of the songs, I’m singing from the perspective of my child-self. That was a new voice for me. I usually would write about how I was feeling at the moment. Taking that time to meditate on what I felt as a nine-year-old really helped me access those emotions.
Would you change anything now it’s finished?
I like to think of songs as mini time capsules and recordings are even more specific time capsules. This record is a snapshot of a collection of songs recorded over a specific time and any changes belong to the next project. I do love how some artists re-record new versions of their songs. I would be excited to record an acoustic version of this project in the future.
Is there anything else you would like to share with the world?
I’m already dreaming up my next album! I can’t wait to record again.
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