@skopemag Q&A with pop singer ALI

@skopemag Q&A with pop singer ALI

– Can you tell us more about the moment you decided to pursue a career in music and leave your hometown?

To be honest, when I left my hometown I wasn’t sure about how my life would be in London. I was 18, didn’t know what I wanted to do. I liked the idea of studying something related to music and arts but it wasn’t till 2 years into living in London that I realised that I wanted to become a songwriter. You know, 2020, covid, loads of free time to start and write songs and develop new crazy hobbies and ideas.

– Which artists have been the most significant influences on your sound and songwriting?

I’d say Taylor Swift and LÉON. We all know Taylor Swift is a great storyteller. She really inspires me when it comes to creating a scene in which to develop the story of the song, and LÉON’s music style gets really close to the concept that I would like to develop in my music. Even though they’re my main inspiration, I always like to have the doors open to other artists or genres. We always do musical research before starting the production of the next song.

– How do your Catalonian roots and the London music scene blend together in your music?

More than my roots, my family has been one of the main influences. Music has always been a huge factor in my home. My dad always had loads of curiosity on discovering new music even with the language barrier that English can be. Many genres have walked through my house, from rock to classical music and, of course, Spanish music. I want to believe that my passion for songwriting comes from my grandma who loved telling stories and writing songs.

In relation to how it blends together, London brought the perfect scenario to develop the stories and backgrounds for my songs. Maybe if I never moved to London I’d never found the urge to start writing songs.

– Your latest single “Trick Of The Light” explores the theme of perception and self-discovery. What’s the inspiration behind your latest release?

This song is a theatrical version of how I’ve been feeling since I moved away, the difference between what you let others see and what you keep for yourself, not letting others see through pass the spotlight. That all that glitters is not gold.

It’s also about and how everybody thought that my time in London would be short till I’d move back home. I was inexperienced and everybody was like: “You’re gonna stay for a month and then you’re gonna come back.” That’s what the lyrics say, “They all come to see me falling”. Everybody was expecting me to fail, even myself. But I didn’t have much of a plan, I just made it happen and that’s what this is about.

– What was the creative process like for “Trick Of The Light” especially working with your producer Yuriy Salud?

Working with Yuriy’s always been easy for me. We’ve known each other for many years and we compliment great together. We work together on all the process, from the songwriting till the release.

I had the idea of writing a song about this topic of kinda disguising reality and a friend of mine, Kat, gave me the title.

We started the song but it stayed unfinished for a while until I came up with the idea of putting the main character in the main stage in front of an audience, like in a musical or a circus. It went quite smooth from this point, we built the song around this scenario. Production wise, Yuriy had in mind building something that reminded a Broadway song and I loved it straight away. It still sounds like a pop song, but it does have this dramatic and theatrical vibe and motion on each section.

– How do you approach songwriting, and has it evolved since your first single, “When the Summer’s Back”?

I have been writing songs since 2020 being ‘When The Summer’s Back’ the first one we ever wrote. My English was a bit shit when I started so I used to rely a lot on Yuriy. I would explain to him what I wanted to say in Spanish and he’d lay down the fine English version. It took maybe a year or two for me to be confident enough to write by myself. Since then we still co-write everything. I’m really proud of the evolution on my songwriting skills which I believe it can be noticed on how much more personal the songs are becoming and sound much more like my own words.

– “Trick Of The Light” is a preview of your upcoming debut album. What can listeners expect from the album as a whole?

The album is gonna be released in 2 volumes. It will be about how my life turned out since I moved away. The first part being about the expectations I had and the second focusing on the results or the actual ‘reality’. All the songs are somehow related to each other through both parts which is something I believe to be really cool!

We’re fully committed to this project and dedicating as much time and effort as I can, so I’m really looking forward to releasing it and being able to share it.

– As an independent artist, you handle many aspects of your music career. What are some challenges and rewards you’ve encountered along the way?

I release my own songs. I personally do everything at home. I record at home. I do songs at home. I feel the biggest challenge nowadays is the music industry is not about writing great songs anymore. It has somehow shifted from just writing amazing songs to writing amazing songs and becoming a marketing expert. It’s true that years ago was really hard for someone to share their music unless it was by being signed by a record label, but now, apart from the beauty of being able to share your music to anyone, the market has also expanded and it’s more competitive than ever.

But it is what it is. I’m an independent artist and I love it. It’s really good because I’m learning a lot. I had no idea about anything related to releasing songs and now I know a lot from different fields. So that’s really fun, too.

– What are your aspirations for the future, both musically and personally?

I would love to live by making music. It would be the best thing ever. I would love to sing in a huge place and hear people scream my lyrics. But for the moment, I just want to live and be stable with music. Maybe moving to a different country as well. Who knows, London has taught me and has given me many things, but would love to have the chance to see new places and live new experiences. And who knows, maybe write some songs about it as well.

– Looking back on your journey so far, what are you most proud of?

I’d say when I made the jump and committed 100% to releasing ‘When The Summer’s Back’ and then I pressed ‘publish’. I was really nervous as I had the feeling things wouldn’t be the same anymore and there was no turning back, I had to go for it. Also the first time I presented myself as a singer/songwriter, it’s really difficult to see yourself like that as you’re writing songs from home and no one obviously knows you as an artist. But now I do feel more confident and proud of saying that I write songs and want to do this for a living.