PVDlive : Thanks for taking the time to talk with us here at PVDlive! You have a show tomorrow night, June 30th, at Fete Music Hall and we’re really looking forward to seeing you perform! PVDlive had the honor and privilege to host your first performance in Providence back in September at The Grange! How has your relationship with music grown in the past 9 months?
Natále: I remember that performance well. It was the first time I felt like I was finally respecting myself as a musical artist and I played an hour long set with almost all original songs. Since then I have been working hard on exploring those same songs, which are about three to four years old. I am interested in finding out what I can do when I push a song to the extreme and push myself to an extreme as an artist. Music is challenging me and I’d say we have a pretty healthy relationship.
PVDlive : Are you still performing with the same band?
Natále: I am still playing with Raffi Donoian – lead guitarist and we’ve added Dan Guedes on drums and Gary Harrison on bass. Since our pianist, Justin Cahoon, left the band to follow a different creative path I’ve been forced to jump on piano and guitar. It has been a blessing in disguise because I’m learning how to play different instruments, which deepens my relationship with music.
PVDlive : You pour so much emotion and soul into every song, its captivating to watch. What are some of the important aspects of songwriting to you?
Natále: Soul. It’s exactly that. I don’t like to think much about writing a song. I’m just a vessel. For me it’s about letting the soul take over to do the talking. It’s my job to find about three or four chords that make me feel safe enough to free my mind and improvise, similar to a mantra. I try to tune into my surroundings and sing what I feel people are thinking about right now. The challenge is to make sure we can deliver that same feeling back to people when performing live.
PVDlive : You lived in Israel for a big chapter of your life. Is that where you first started playing and performing music?
Natále: I started playing in a band in Israel when I was 21. We would cover songs from the 1960s & 70s and perform in Tel Aviv. We’d play free shows on balconies and rooftops, and I would be screaming Creedence Clearwater Revival lyrics, so people on the streets would hear. I gained a lot of confidence during that time and was able to work through my stage fright.
PVDlive: How long did you live in Israel and how has that inspired your unique sound?
Natále: Having lived in Israel for seven years, I was able to experience and learn a lot about the Israeli culture and my roots. I spent almost every Friday with my great-grandfather, who was a Yemenite-Israeli singer and a Rabbi. He would chant when he sang, which he believed would help you reach higher consciousness. I use a similar chanting method in my singing, hoping to tap into something spiritual as well. I also perform a couple of songs in Hebrew, in hopes of sharing such an ancient language with people who may have never heard it before.
PVDlive : You can tell through your lyrics and how you sing that you truly feel it all, its a gift to watch. Do you see a microphone and the ability to sing as a powerful tool in this era?
Natále: It is a privilege and an honor to stand on a stage and attract an audience for more than five minutes. Whoever is on that stage should be using that time wisely to give people something to take home with them; to make them feel inspired in some way.
PVDlive: What message is important for you to communicate through your art?
Natále: The world feels so uncertain and filled with misrepresentations so singing about the truth is something I feel strongly about. Most of my songs aim to encourage people to believe in their intuition and use their time here to do great things. We have the ability to envision and create a positive future.
PVDlive : How long have you lived in Providence?
Natále: I’ve been living in Providence for a year and a half. The first time I came to Providence, I was visiting a friend for the weekend and ended up staying for 2 and a half weeks.
PVDlive: What qualities drew you back to call it home?
Natále: I was drawn to the creative energy that was happening here. The people and artists in this town are incredibly free and beautiful; they definitely are the reasons why I moved here to pursue art.
PVDlive: Besides music what are you working on creatively in the community?
Natále: I just recently finished a feature length documentary called Am I The Dream Or The Dreamer? The film is about an artist’s odyssey, featuring the The Low Anthem, Roz Raskin (Roz & The Ricecakes), Jocie Adams (Arc Iris), Sam Beam (Iron & Wine), The Avett Brothers, Brian Blade, and of course, Jon Berberian, the owner of The Columbus Theatre.
PVDlive: Oh wow! When can we see this?!
Natále: We hope to offer a sneak preview of the film in Providence this summer, preferably at the Columbus.
PVDlive: Will you be recording soon?
Natále: We will be recording a few singles at Columbus for three consecutive days in July, with the help of my friend and master engineer, Nic Knox. This will be my first time professionally recording my own music, and I could not have picked a better place to do so.
PVDlive: That is amazing! Looking forward to the recordings and your show tomorrow! The show is all female-lead performers. Was that intentional? Can you tell us a bit about The Wolff Sisters and Drone Dolores?
Natále: I wouldn’t deny any other gendered performer if I thought our sounds complemented one another for a great show, but I was honored when these bands agreed to play with us. I’ve heard a lot about them through other musician friends, and have yet to hear them live.
It’s going to be a great show with lots of energy coming from these powerful women. It’s inspiring to see more and more female lead bands.
PVDlive: Agreed! And for the win, Whats the greatest advice you have ever received?
Natále: ‘You can create your own reality.’
I hear this almost every day from friends and mentors and strangers and this will always be the best advice I have received. It’s so simple and true.
Interview by: Chrissy Stewart
Photo Credit: Derek Delehunt @4nfilm