Interview with an ungrateful, impolite, dull, unhuman, drawn creature, as if vocalist Layla Zoe. An interview by email in writing.
JazzBluesNews.com: – First, let’s start out with where you grew up, and what got you interested in music. How exactly did your adventure take of? When did you realize that this was a passion you could make a living out of?
Layla Zoe: – I was born in British Columbia, BC. My father had a love of blues music and extensive record collec,on. I grew up hearing great music from the start and fell in love with artists like Van Morrison, Muddy Waters, Janis Joplin, Billie Holiday, Bob Dylan, etc, from a young age.
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This experience inspired me to leave my bar band and pursue my own original music which lead to my first EP being released in 2005. Since then I have released many albums and moved around Canada and then to Europe to pursue my music.
JBN: – How has your sound evolved over time? What have you been doing to find anddevelop your own sound? What routine pracces or exercises have you developed to maintain and improve your current musical proficiency, in terms of both rhythm and harmony?
LZ: – I guess you would need to ask my fans how my sound has changed. But I would say my voice became more able to sing in many ranges and now I sing soul as well as using the “big blues” voice. I don’t have routine pracces or warm ups on or off tour. I sing when I feel the urge to sing and when I want to sing. I write when I am inspired to write. Alot of my talents are god given and natural abilities, but over decades of working hard at touring and making albums, I have of course grown as an artist and vocalist.
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JBN: – In your opinion, what’s the balance in music between intellect and soul?
LZ: – I am not sure I understand this ques,on, but for me music has always been about soul connection. I try not to think when I am on stage and singing. This is another reason I don’t love being in the studio, because oFen it is necessary to “think” or repeat parts. On stage my mind goes out the window and my soul and spirit take the reigns. This is in my opinion the point of music. To feel something, and bring the listener on their own journey of feeling. Because where
the music takes us, is a purely spiritual place.
JBN: – There’s a two-way relationship between audience and artist; are you okay with delivering people the emotion they long for?
LZ: – As I said before, I love being on stage most, because of this exact reason. I prefer to sing to the audience and give them energy which they in return give back to me.
JBN: – How can we get young people interested in blues when most of standard tunes are half a century old?
LZ: – Luckily there are many ar,sts in contemporary music who have done this in many ways, like the Black Keys, Ben Harper, John Mayer, Joss Stone, etc. I think it will always be a genre that is distinctly different and unique in it’s fan base. But the only way to change what the youth are exposed to, is to change the face of radio and the mass machine of the music business which tends to sink all it’s money and power into promoting pop music. Unfortunately it might always be this way. But there will always be a place for the blues.
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JBN: – If you could change one single thing in the musical world and that would become reality, what would that be?
LZ: – I would love to see a more fair music business, where talent is more important to success than connections, money, or status. But all businesses are corrupted by these issues, so I don’t see how the music business would be any different.
JBN: – Whom do you find yourself listening to these days?
LZ: – I actually love all kinds of music. Lately I listen to alot of indie bands, but also alot of bluegrass and gospel. I have always loved “good” music, so whatever my heart and ears enjoy, I will listen and support it. Lately I got quite deeply into Terry Reid’s music though.
Interview by Simon Sarg
Note: https://jazzbluesnews.com/2023/03/19/useu-jazz-blues-association-festivals/ You can express your consent and join our association, which will give you the opportunity to perform at our Jazz and Blues festivals, naturally receiving an appropriate royalty. We cover all expenses. The objectives of the interview are: How to introduce yourself, your activities, thoughts and intellect, and make new discoveries for our US/EU Jazz & Blues Association, which organizes festivals, concerts and meetings in Boston and various European countries, why not for you too!! You can read more about the association here. https://jazzbluesnews.com/2022/11/19/useujba/