SOPHIE ANN CHATS NEW SINGLE “FLAWLESS” AND HER PLANS FOR 2019 0 110

Having just released her self-love anthem “Flawless”, Sophie Ann is set to see out the year on quite a high. Inspired by the likes of Prince and Elliott Smith among others, she writes mostly from and about her life experiences, ensuring she’s an artist that pretty much anyone who hears her songs can relate to. Currently working on an EP, Sophie Ann spoke to ThisIsTheLatest to chat social media, early career ambitions and her goal of wanting to make people feel good about themselves.

TITL: Who exactly is Sophie Ann?

Sophie Ann: Sophie Ann is unapologetically herself. She is a work in progress and will always be honest about that. That doesn’t mean she’s not ‘Flawless’!

TITL: What would you say your unique selling point as an artist is? What makes you different?

SA: I am not trying to fit into any genre. The music I make is 100% what I hear in my head. I am very clear about what I want my music to sound like and rarely compromise, to a fault sometimes! You’re getting an inside look into my crazy brain every time you listen to one of my songs.

TITL: At what age did you first realise you wanted to make music? Was there a particular song or artist you grew up listening to that made you think “I want to do that”?

SA: I began songwriting at a very early age. I think I was in elementary school. My parents suggested I put my feelings into a song and I haven’t stopped since. “While My Guitar Gently Weeps” was the first song that made me want to look up the lyrics. Growing up, I would analyze song lyrics for fun. I was extremely introverted and was always thinking about music and words. I knew I needed to continue writing.

TITL: Before music, did you ever have any other career ambitions?

SA: Not really. The only other thing I wanted to be was a veterinarian but that was short lived. Music was always the path! I went to college for acting – I grew up doing theater – and realized pretty much immediately that I needed to transfer.

TITL: Which bands and artists are you most inspired or influenced by, and how do those influences impact the music you make?

SA: I am consciously influenced by singer/songwriters – Elliott Smith, Regina Spektor, etc. – and unconsciously influenced by funk and disco; Prince, Michael Jackson, etc. I grew up constantly listening to both. I think the fusion of those two things, storytelling and a fun track, are what make me unique.

TITL: Which one band or artist might you say you sound most similar to? 

SA: Oh man. I don’t know! Janelle Monae? Portugal The Man? Julia Michaels? I’m bad at this.

TITL: Who or what is your biggest inspiration when it comes to music and song-writing?

SA: Life is my biggest inspiration. I pretty much only write from personal experience. You can always skew it to fit other situations, but writing from genuine emotion is the only way for me.

TITL: Who or what most inspired you to write your new single “Flawless”? 

SA: Going through a breakup and learning to be independent for the first time. Before being alone, I felt like I couldn’t do life without some sort of help. Once I got back on my feet and realized I had all the strength I needed, I felt fucking flawless.

TITL: Is there an EP or album in the works and if so, is there anything you can tell me about it?

SA: Heck yes! It’s going to be a look into what I’ve been going through the past year. The ups, the downs, everything. It’s pretty much my diary with a funky beat.

TITL: As a modern day artist, how are you finding social media’s impact on your career? Would you agree it’s a vital tool in today’s world?

SA: I am really bad at social media. I try to keep up and post regularly, but it’s not really a priority of mine. I do think it’s important in today’s world. Most people get their information from social media. I think making great music is the most important thing and that fans will follow you if they like what you are doing.

TITL: Do you have any performances coming up and with that in mind, which one venue, anywhere in the world, would you most like to play?

SA: I don’t have anything coming up in the near future. I’m mostly working on finishing this EP. I don’t have a specific venue in mind, but a dream of mine is to go on a world tour.

TITL: With the end of the year quickly approaching, what does 2019 have in store for you? What are your main objectives and, looking further ahead, what’s the long term goal for yourself as an artist?

SA: My main objective for 2019 is to work on myself and my music. The more I work on myself, the more opportunities will come my way. I truly believe that. I want to put out music videos that I am proud of and be a part of as much creativity as possible. My long term goal as an artist is to make people feel good about themselves and feel like they have a friend and confidant in me. I want to connect.

Give “Flawless” a listen below and to keep up to date with Sophie Ann, give her page a like on Facebook or follow her on Twitter and Instagram.

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HUGH JACKMAN TO PERFORM AT THE 2019 BRIT AWARDS 0 25

We are so excited to announce that multi award-winning actor and performer Hugh Jackman is set to open the show with a performance from the global musical sensation The Greatest Showman.

This show-stopping BRITs performance will be under the creative direction of Michael Gracey, the film’s director.

Hugh Jackman has carved a successful career both on stage in front of live crowds. From his award-winning turn on Broadway as the 1970s singer/songwriter Peter Allen, to Wolverine in the blockbuster X-Men franchise, he has proven to be one of the most versatile actors of our time. Jackman garnered his first Academy Award® nomination for Best Actor for his performance in Tom Hooper’s Les Misérables, and his standout performance as protagonist Jean Valjean also earned him a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor in a Comedy/Musical, as well as SAG Award® nominations for both Best Ensemble and Best Male Actor in a leading role, and a BAFTA Award nomination. Most recently, he was nominated for his role as P.T. Barnum in The Greatest Showman. His ‘The Man, The Music, The Show’ World Tour will kick off this May, which includes five nights at The O2 Arena, London.

The Greatest Showman has taken the world by storm since its theatrical release at the end of 2017, hitting the top spot in the UK by early 2018 and becoming the most purchased home entertainment release after Avengers Infinity War and Star Wars The Last Jedi.

The film’s soundtrack, composed by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, was the UK’s best selling album of last year, topping the charts in several countries including the US, Australia, UK and Japan and reaching No. 1 on iTunes in over 70 countries. The 5x Platinum certified soundtrack has to date sold over 5.4 million records worldwide, with 1.77 million sold in the UK, and is the second album in 30 years to spend 11 consecutive weeks at No. 1 in the UK, equalling the record set by Adele for her album ‘21’, and was the longest running soundtrack at No. 1 in 50 years. ‘This is Me’, taken from the soundtrack, won a Golden Globe for ‘Best Original Song’ and was nominated for an Academy Award; the soundtrack was also up for two GRAMMY awards, and last night was announced as winner of Best Compilation Soundtrack for Visual Media.

BRITs Chairman and Chairman & CEO of Sony Music UK and Ireland Jason lley said:
“We are delighted to welcome the Golden Globe and Tony Award winning superstar Hugh Jackman to the BRITs stage this month with a performance that is set to be nothing short of spectacular. The Greatest Showman soundtrack dominated the charts in 2018 breaking records all over the world as well as here in the UK. It’s only fitting that the UK’s biggest celebration of musical successes should be kicked off with a performance from the biggest selling album in the UK of the last year.”

The Greatest Showman is the latest performance to be revealed for The BRITs, following the announcements of P!nk, Calvin Harris with Dua Lipa, Sam Smith and Rag’n’Bone Man, Jess Glynne with H.E.R., The 1975, George Ezra, Little Mix with Ms Banks and Jorja Smith for the UK’s biggest night in music.

The BRIT Awards 2019 with Mastercard take place Wednesday 20th February at The O2 Arena, London, broadcast exclusively on ITV and hosted by Jack Whitehall. Clara Amfo and Alice Levine will be back to host this year’s Red Carpet show on ITV2 on the night of the awards for the third year running.

BLUE OYSTER CULT TALK THEIR UPCOMING UK TOUR & 50 YEAR CAREER 0 23

With a career that spans 50 years behind them already, Blue Oyster Cult have firmly established themselves as one of the music industry’s most illustrious bands, respected by music fans and critics on both sides of the Atlantic. As the band prepare to make a long overdue return to the UK, guitarist and song-writer Buck Dharma teased what fans can expect from their upcoming shows and reflected on the bands’ career and success so far.

Q: Are you looking forward to coming back to the UK? What do you most enjoy and how does playing here compare to back home in the States?

Buck Dharma: Yes I am. I have enjoyed the UK since first coming in 1975. I like the difference in culture and customs compared to the US, and revisiting friends and fans I’ve gotten to know over the years.

Q: What are some of your favourite memories of playing in the UK? Any previous shows that have always stuck with you?

BD: I’m looking forward to playing what used to be called Hammersmith Odeon in London again. We had great shows there in the heyday of Blue Oyster Cult and look forward to returning. Otherwise I like to get out into the countryside and visit the other cities and towns in the country.

Q: If at all, how have you adapted and developed your live production and your approach to playing your music live over the decades?

BD: We are currently touring with less special effects and props, focusing primarily on the music and the musical performance. It’s essentially what it’s all about, and I enjoy concentrating on that aspect of our musical catalogue.

Q: “(Don’t Fear) The Reaper” is such a great track that has really stood the test of time. How does it feel to have a song that is so universally recognised and loved, even in 2019? Has the song’s success continued to surpass your initial expectations for the track?

BD: It’s great that “Reaper” has held up so well over time. It’s endurance continues to surprise and gratify me, and yes, I had no idea when we recorded it that it would have had the impact it has.

Q: A lot has changed within the Rock community since you first started, but are there any current rock artists that have impressed you over the last few years? Any albums you’re particularly enjoying at the moment?

BD: I like The Rival Sons and the new youngsters Greta Van Fleet. I also discovered last year a 2015 album by Chris Cornell called “Higher Truth.”

Q: Your last studio album, Curse of the Hidden Mirrors was released 18 years ago – any current plans to make another record?

BD: As matter of fact, yes. BOC is recording another LP this year, 2019, the first in many years. Should be out by fall.

Q: You have worked and toured with the likes of Patti Smith, Randy Jackson and Alice Cooper over the course of your career – any highlights or people you still have on the wish list?

BD: All our collaborations and touring have been rewarding. I’m open to collaborating with anybody, perhaps some of the younger artists, although I don’t actively pursue such cooperation.

Q: You have been doing this for over 50 years now which is incredible. Having reached such a large milestone in your career, what inspires you to keep going and keeps you motivated?

BD: I enjoy playing and singing as much today as I ever did. I don’t have to work, but I do it because it’s rewarding personally. I could live if I couldn’t do it anymore, but I truly enjoy it, and will do it for another couple years at least.

Q: If you could turn back time, is there anything you would change or do differently?

BD: I have no regrets. It might be nice to have known more about the business side of the Music industry, but I’m not complaining about the way it’s gone. I’m lucky to have worked at a job I like all my life.

Q: Finally, knowing all that you know now, what advice would you give your former self when first starting out, and what advice would you give to anyone wanting to be in a band now?

BD: Only that I should prepare for a long career. I never anticipated I’d be still doing what I did in my 20’s fifty years later. I don’t know what to advise young people today. I’m not really involved in the current state of music business, it’s changing rapidly, of course, like everything else in life.

Tickets for Blue Oyster Cult’s UK tour, which kicks off on February 21st, are on sale now. For more information on the band, visit their website or give their page a like on Facebook.