In our interview with SOMA, we delve into her fearless genre exploration and the inspiration behind her latest release, “Medicine.”
In the dynamic and thriving music landscape of Sydney’s inner west, SOMA is poised to become the next breakout star. With her latest single, “Medicine,” she defies categorization, seamlessly blending elements of neo-soul, R&B, and hip-hop into a captivating sonic experience.
In our interview, SOMA discusses the inspiration behind the track, which immerses listeners in a sensory journey of ripening fruit and tantalizing spices. Embracing a fearless spirit of exploration, SOMA shares her creative process and how she draws inspiration from diverse musical genres to create her own distinct sound.
With a childhood steeped in eclectic sounds and a deep passion for music, SOMA’s artistic development has been shaped by her upbringing. With her unwavering identity and boundary-pushing approach, SOMA is undoubtedly an artist to watch as she paves her way to the forefront of the industry.
Happy: Where’s home, and what’s the current music scene like in your neck of the woods?
SOMA: I currently reside in Marrickville. I’m an inner west gal but born and raised by the oceans of East Sydney. I love being in such a creative community of all walks of life, I feel at home here in my little creative hub. Despite the challenges many of us have experienced since Covid, artists and musicians in the inner west have adapted by coming up with new and creative ways to reach their audience, and we are now seeing an abundance of new talent and venues who accommodate environments and showcase a variety of art and music. It feels like a new and exciting chapter.
Happy: Tell us about your average day.
SOMA: The life of an artist is somewhat a spontaneous one, If I have been up until early hours of the morning working or shooting in the studio, I may take sometime to myself when I wake, go for walk or perhaps a swim, come home, listen to some beats or play some piano, cook something that heals the soul and birth new ideas I can bring back into the studio that night. I’d say that’s an average day for me.
Happy: What about your ultimate day?
SOMA: My Ultimate day .. Would probably be swimming in turquoise oceans (My fave thing to do) soaking up the sweet sun lying next to my lovers… somewhere on a tropical island, knowing I have just toured in some of my favourite countries and met some inspiring humans, feeling gratitude and an abundance of love!!
Happy: Your latest release, “Medicine, ” showcases a departure from Your neo-soul and R&B origins. Can you tell us more about the inspiration behind behind this sonic shift and how you tapped into the essence of hip-hop?
SOMA: My inspiration stems from an array of musical genres, from old to new. It might have come as a shock to some from hearing my previous neo-soul sounds to the now Alt Hip-hip style but I did in fact grow up listening to a lot of 90’s to new hip hop as well and soul, all of which is engrained in me and my artistry.
Happy: “Medicine” takes listeners on a sensory journey filled with rich flavours and a blend of honeyed melodies. Could you elaborate on the creative process behind the song and how you aimed to evoke these sensations?
SOMA: “Medicine” is a spicy song about exploring the senses, indulging in flavour, and embracing the fiery and intense dance of desire and lust. When writing this song I had imagery of an Adam and Eve concept, forbidden fruit, and an underlying meaning of our animalistic side and the deeper desires we feel as humans beings. I was in the mood to create something sensuous and playful without overthinking and ‘Medicine’ is just that.
Happy: Your sound has been described as distinct and inviting, blurring genre boundaries. How do you navigate the exploration of different genres while maintaining a cohesive artistic identity?
SOMA: As an artist, I truly believe that whichever direction you go in, as long as it aligns with ones self and is authentic to them, it will always show through their art. Having a versatile voice and a love for many styles of art and music, I will continue to bend the genre abiding rule and try anything that makes me feel good. I want to ride in all the lanes.
Happy: Your musical journey began at a young age surrounded by eclectic sounds and vinyl treasures. How has this early exposure influenced your artistic development and the unique tapestry of sounds you create?
SOMA: Growing up with an array of different instruments and records from around the world was like a musical playground for me, I began to explore my ownsound and style from a young age, picking up the piano at the age of 5 and then moving onto saxophone, singing and dance at the age of 8. Having a mother of Indian/Portuguese decent and a father, well travelled and born here in Aus, both of whom have a rich musical history and always pushing me with ease into music and the arts have come of great assistance of mu musical journey, I feel as though I have many elements she through my music, for world to modern.
Happy: Who are some of your musical influences?
SOMA: This is always a difficult question for me. I think my biggest influences of recent who encompass my artistry and have impacted me and my music would be: BEAM, Little Simz, Isaiah Rashad, Mick Jenkins, Bonobo, The blaze, Bicep, Cinematic Orchestra, badbadnotgood, Radiohead, Saba, Andre 3000, Outkast, Kendrick Lamar, Asap Rocky, Smino, EarthGang, J.I.D, Blue Room Mafia, Pa Saleiu, Ramirez, Shakwell, Pouya, I could go on but the list would be never ending. In recent years I have been getting into a lot of alternative hip hop and future soul.
Happy: Looking ahead, what can we expect from SOMA in terms of future releases or projects? Are there any new directions or collaborations you are excited to explore?
SOMA: There are many exciting new chapters unfolding at this time of my life, I have more songs off the current Ep which are set to be released in the coming months, all of which are on the same tip as the previous releases. My Music video for ‘Medicine’ will be out this week which I had the pleasure of creating at Metronome Studios with the Atypical team. I have also been working on some more electronic deep house/garage styes which I am truly so excited to share, it might seem like a brave jump, but somehow it still sounds cohesive. Im very excited to share what’s to come.
Happy: What makes you happy?
SOMA: A mindful state And values that I hold innate. I am realising more the older I get, as cliche as it may sound, happiness truly does come from within. A healthy body, a heathy mind, remembering what is important to you. This is an extremely hard yet rewarding industry and keeping these things in check is so very important, it is so easy to go down the wrong path and into the darkness, but I have found the light once again and am so thankful for all the experiences, good and bad, that I have learnt from.
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