NOMAD & LOLA CHAT NEW MUSIC, FAVOURITE ARTISTS & PLANS FOR 2020 0 120

With their EP ‘Noir’, a selection of carefully selected and wonderfully reimagined classic songs, due out next month, and with their latest cover – Pink Floyd’s “Another Brick In The Wall” – having dropped yesterday, it’s no surprise that more and more music fans are catching on to the talents of married duo Nomad & Lola. Currently preparing to share their EP with the world and already looking to 2020, ThisIsTheLatest spoke to the duo, considered by some to be the 21st century’s Sonny and Cher, about their artistic influences, who’d feature in their dream live show and their thoughts on the future of their industry.

TITL: Personally and professionally, which artists are you both most influenced and inspired by? 

Lola: I’ve always had an affinity for storytellers like Paul McCartney, Billy Joel, The Eagles and Tom Petty. 

Nomad: Van Halen will always be my favorite band, but I love artists like Paco De Luca, George Benson and of course the Beatles; George Harrison especially.

TITL: At what point and time did the two of you decide to join forces and create music together? Looking back to that time and given that you’ve recently dropped your new single, have you since had one of those “We’re actually doing this” moments yet? 

N&L: It wasn’t right away we started making music together, we were individual artists who happened to be dating. Being that both were based in MUSIC, whether it’s working on a new song for us or others artist or creating music for a TV show, we truly have that “We’re actually doing this” conversation almost daily. 

TITL: Relationships of any kind can be difficult at times, so how, as a duo who are also husband and wife, deal with any particularly tense or stressful times that might cause disagreements between you? 

N&L: HA! Anyone who is married AND works together knows that the struggle is real! Being that we are with each other practically 24/7 you have to find your own personal space, this will allow both parties to breathe. And yes in case you were wondering, we totally get sick of each other from time to time, this even sometimes occurs on stage but we just roll with it, usually the audience is laughing with us when it happens. 

TITL: What is it about the Nancy Sinatra classic “Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)” that made you think your version would make a great single release? 

N&L: Sonny Bono wrote the track and Cher was the first to sing it, however when Mary Ramos – the music supervisor for Quentin Tarantino – added the Nancy Sinatra’s version to the Kill Bill soundtrack, the song had its own resurgence. For Lola, it has always resonated with her, from the overall darkness of the story to today’s current issues, we feel it’s a sensitive subject but one that can’t be ignored. 

TITL: The track is taken from your upcoming EP ‘Noir’, out in October. Without giving too much away, what can you tell me about it? 

N: ‘Noir’ is an amalgam of old and new, cinematic at best and that is heavily guitar influenced spotlighting Lola’s rich, sultry powerhouse vocals. The idea is for the listener to press play, sit back and be taken somewhere else. Although this EP is all covers, each song is re-imagined in such a way that it becomes brand new. 

TITL: How did you decide on which tracks to include on the collection, given that there have been so many great songs released over the decades?

N&L: Song selection is not easy by any means. This particular selection of songs we chose for nostalgic reasons, while paying homage to some of our favorite writers/artists from yester-year. Trust us when we say we have plenty more where that came from. 

TITL: Could you each pick a favourite track or does that tend to change depending on your mood and other circumstances? 

N: This is like picking your favorite child, you’re not supposed to. But deep down you know there’s a favorite! I teeter between “Summertime”/”While My Guitar Gently Weeps” and “Another Brick In The Wall.”

L: I’m more partial to “Similau” and “Bang Bang.” 

TITL: Will you be heading out on the road in support of the EP? Any tour plans in the works?

N&L: We play locally all over Southern California in our hometown, Burbank, and surrounding areas. However touring abroad is our ultimate goal. So by all means any promoters out there looking for a good time, call us! 

TITL: If you could put together your dream show with four bands or artists, living or dead, who would you choose and where would you play? 

N&L: Our dream show would consist of Paul McCartney, Van Halen – with David Lee Roth – with Dave Grohl and Billy Joel, and we’d play at the Hollywood Bowl.

TITL: How do you feel about social media and its power and capability of connecting artists with a global audience? Are you fans of that constant connectivity or do you think that, like most things, there are good and bad sides to having such instant access to everything and everyone? 

N&L: The Pandora’s box of opportunity it affords the modern day artist is vast, however it nurtures market over-saturation, which can be overwhelming and difficult to navigate. It also requires an incredible amount of time and energy, that can certainly be better spent elsewhere but it has become a lifeline for artists, because without it, you don’t exist.

TITL: Aside from your EP release, do you have any other plans in the pipeline for the rest of the year? Have you started looking towards 2020 yet? 

N&L: After the ‘Noir’ EP release on October 4th, we will focus on the Holiday EP ‘Christmas On The Coast’, and then in 2020 we will start off the new year with a small batch of original songs. Be sure to follow on social media for tons of music, videos, giveaways and more! 

TITL: Away from your own music, Nomad, you’re the touring guitarist and MD for Babyface and Lola, you host the Monster Jam series throughout the US. How do you juggle such busy schedules and, when you actually get some time to and for yourselves, how do you like to unwind? 

N&L: Unwind? What is this you speak of? In all honesty, we don’t. We’ve been married for three years and haven’t even taken a honeymoon, yet. Perhaps once we’re touring full time as NOMAD & LOLA, that’s when we can fit sometime for ourselves in. 

TITL: Finally then, as a duo covering hits from across the decades, where do you see the future of the music industry going in the years to come? Which genres do you personally feel might enjoy a new renaissance and how do you plan to try and stay ‘relevant’ in such an ever changing business? 

N&L: There’s nothing new under the sun, the way we approach music is by making it our own, regardless of its origin. We try to be as honest and organic in the process as possible. That means not following trends and staying true to what WE LIKE. We think everything is cyclical, which means somewhere down the line, everything becomes relevant again and every genre has its time in the spotlight. As long as we maintain a sense of timelessness, quality and integrity, the cream will rise to the top right? That’s the idea at least. 

Check out the brand new single from Nomad and Lola, “Another Brick In The Wall” below and you can keep up to date with them via their website, Twitter and Facebook. Header photo credit: Robert Downs Photography.

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REVIEW: JULIANA CERVIZZI – SCARED OF MYSELF EP 0 23

It’s often been said that the early years of your life are the most important and influential when it comes to who someone grows up to be. In the case of Juliana Cervizzi, those early years led this talented singer-songwriter to discover a love for music – a love she’s now sharing with the world via her Scared Of Myself EP.

The EP plays like a diary, and from the opening number, the title track of the collection, the listener is taken on a journey through Juliana’s most honest thoughts and feelings. “Outside Looking In” with its stripped back instrumentation allows her voice to take centre stage as she sings about self-empowerment, while “Both Sides” focusses on the idea that while we can and should care about those around us, we shouldn’t so at the expense of our own emotional and mental wellbeing.

The hand-clap that runs throughout “Bother Me” will no doubt sound fantastic when fans unite to do it together at any live shows Juliana has in future, and “Found You” is both catchy and lyrically simple yet honest enough to be worthy of plenty of airplay – and also likely to get stuck in people’s heads (in a good way). Closing number “Another Way” is a highlight of the EP; notably because of the beautiful, soft vocal delivery from Juliana which makes the song incredibly impactful and ideal for unwinding – and reflecting – to, perhaps while sat at a window on a summer’s evening or a winter night in front of a fire.

Ultimately, this EP will resonate with anyone who has ever struggled or continues to struggle with accepting and liking themselves for who they are but furthermore, will introduce music fans to a rising talent that deserves to be heard by as many people as possible.

GEORGIA VANNEWKIRK TALKS “BLUE VELVET”, FUTURE PLANS & ARTISTIC INSPIRATIONS 0 74

Earlier this year, Georgia VanNewkirk dropped a surprise debut single “Wish You Well” – without so much as telling her family – and immediately caught the attention of music fans everywhere. Since then, she’s seen both her streaming numbers and fan-base grow considerably and has had a very good year indeed. While currently working on more new music, Georgia spoke to ThisIsTheLatest about the artists she’s most inspired by, her views on social media and her thoughts about her future.

TITL: Has music always been the ultimate career goal for you or have there been times when you’ve considered other paths? 

I have always enjoyed writing music, but never really saw it as a possible career path until recently. I am actually a senior at the Savannah College of Art and Design studying Advertising, and for a while, I thought I would graduate and go work at an advertising agency. My mother was a costume designer for 20 years and this summer I followed in her footsteps working as a costume assistant on a movie, so that is also something I was considering pursuing. I feel like I was destined for some type of creative career and I feel so incredibly lucky that I am able to do music in a professional capacity because ultimately it’s what I enjoy doing the most. 

TITL: Ultimately, what made you decide to make the leap and put yourself and your music out in the world?

I have been writing, singing and playing for years, but I never really took myself seriously as a musician. When I met my producer, Noah Taylor, we started writing and recording, and I became so enamored with the process. I was having so much fun doing it I thought the logical next step was to release it, if anything to show family and friends this cool project I was working on. 

TITL: Which bands or artists might you say most influence the music you make? Is there, in particular, you’ve been inspired by over the years?

Growing up my parents played Dolly Parton, Fleetwood Mac and The Beatles exclusively. We didn’t have a TV or radio, so I didn’t even know that other music even existed.  All three of them have had a huge impact on the music I make subconsciously, and they are all legends I admire so much. Recently though, I have been finding a lot of inspiration in iconic female artists like Lana Del Ray, Kimbra, King Princess, and Maggie Rogers. 

TITL: When it came to your debut single, “Wish You Well” what made you decide not to tell anyone, even those closest to you, that you were releasing it, and what was their reaction when you did?

One of the worst things an artist can do is take themselves too seriously, and the second-worst thing they can do is sell themselves short. I am constantly trying to fight the latter of the two. I wanted to put my music out there and let it speak for itself with no expectations. When the song came out the people closest to me expected it, but pretty much everyone else was shocked. My phone died the night of the release and I didn’t charge it until the next afternoon, so when it came back to life it was going crazy and I thought that someone had died or that there was a zombie apocalypse. It was really cool to see so much support from people for a project that was so personal. 

Is there a story behind the song? 

“Wish You Well“ was my reaction to the end of a relationship. I was so sad and my heart was broken so writing the song was super therapeutic. I held the experience so close to me for so long, and releasing the song helped me let the pain go. It was a way to bookend that time of my life and move on to new love and adventures.

TITL: The track has so far achieved 100,000 streams on Spotify – did you ever anticipate the track would go down so well with music fans? 

Not even a little bit, I thought my mom and grandma would listen and maybe an aunt or an uncle if I shared it with our family Facebook group. 

TITL: Tell me a little about your new track “Blue Velvet.”

“Blue Velvet” tells the story of how I fell for a boy with blue eyes. It showcases how we met when he asked me to be with him, and eventually, the day I knew I loved him. The song follows my emotional journey through doubt and fear and my fall into the blue velvet abyss.

TITL: The video drops on December 4th. How did you come up with concept for it and do you enjoy being creative in that way?

My original idea for the video was to get together with one of my best friends, Liam Haehnle and prance around Savannah GA in blue dresses with his super 8 camera. Luckily, he decided to bring Calvin Herbst in as director and within a week we had a crew of thirteen, five locations – including a soap factory and a synagogue – and a four-day shoot planned. Executing my vision was one of the most exhilarating feelings, and I thoroughly enjoyed the entire process. I’ve always enjoyed visual art, and creating a piece that tells the story of my music was something I really loved doing, and can’t wait to do again. 

TITL: Is there an EP or album in the works? 

Yes, there is I have been in the studio all week and am SO excited for everyone to heat what I have been working on.

TITL: Who or what most influences your song-writing and is song-writing something that comes easy to you? 

Personal experiences influence my song-writing the most. When I started writing it wasn’t to complete a song, it was just to get out what I was feeling in a way that made sense. I am not really able to sit down and say, “Ok I am going to write about love today,” I more just start playing piano and see what comes out. 

TITL: What, in your opinion, makes a song truly great and which would you say is the greatest ever written? 

A song that is truly great takes you to a different place. It’s a song you can feel in your bones and is universally understood. I think we all have great songs within us. The greatest song ever written… wow. There are so many songs and so many songwriters, I feel like there is so much room for greatness and creativity for each artist that picking one would be unfathomable.

TITL: Given that you achieved a huge response on Spotify without not telling anyone about the release of your first single, what are your thoughts on social media? Do you think there are any downsides to society and the music industry appearing to be so reliant on technology and the likes of Twitter and Facebook, or is it just the way the world is now? 

I think social media is such an amazing tool, of course, it has its downsides, but being able to connect with people across the globe is such a unique experience to my generation. I have heard from so many people through Instagram about how Wish You Well has helped them through their breakup, helped them find closure from their relationships, or helped them get over their ex. This was something I never expected, so I am grateful to social media for connecting me to people with shared experiences. 

TITL: Moving away from music slightly, you were Mila Kunis’ costume assistant on the set of her latest film. Is that side of the entertainment business something you also have an interest in, and how if at all does that side influence or affect the music side of things?  

The really cool thing about working on this film as a costume assistant was that I was following in my mom’s footsteps. She was a costume designer in LA for 20 years and worked on the entire run of That 70’s Show with Mila for eight years. During the pre-production phase of the film, I was with my mom and we saw Mila for the first time in ten years. It was so amazing to see them reunite after so long and to be able to work with someone I had grown up around. That side of the entertainment business is so fascinating to me, and it influences me overall as an artist. I learned so much about what goes into a giant production and the process behind making large scale art and it has really helped me to see and curate the bigger picture within my music. 

TITL: Would you like to do more work on film sets etc. or are the coming months set to be more focussed on your music?

I am definitely more focused on my music at this point in my life, but I don’t think I am done with film sets quite yet. There are so many variables in life, who knows, maybe in ten years, I’ll be living in Australia in my tiny home with a charcuterie restaurant. 

TITL: Finally then, as a fairly new artist, what would you like to see the industry achieve and where would you like it to go in terms of growth and development in the coming years? What mark are you hoping to leave on it as your legacy many years from now?

As a new artist, I am just going to keep working hard and hope for the best. I don’t like to get too caught up in the future, as long as I am writing music that I love, I will always be happy. 

Give “Blue Velvet” a listen below and for more information on Georgia VanNewkirk, follow her on Twitter and Instagram.