Tell us about yourself and your music
By education I am classical guitar teacher and used to teach for some time after the college.
I started writing songs in my teenage years.
After immigrating to US (I’m from USSR originally) I moved away from teaching music and got the day job completely unrelated to music ?
But the songs kept coming to me, not many but enough to keep me busy – I was just writing song and playing for my own entertainment…
Then I started to record my songs overdubbing nylon and acoustic guitar, dobro, backing vocals… I am fascinated with different style of music – blues, folk, roots, Americana, old-time music, blues-rock, folk-rock… And I’m trying to channel these influences into my different songs.
Few years back on Soundcloud I met this wonderful producer and multi instrumentalist
from Germany https://soundcloud.com/bitzone.
The first collaboration we did together was the cover of Sandy Denny/ Fairport Convention song “Fotheringay”.
I was swept away by the sound that he was able create!
Talk to us more about your latest release
This first collaboration with bitzone inspired me to arrange and record the rest of the songs I was playing for quite some time and release my first album “Dark Waters, Distant Shores”.
I also invited other musicians to play – overdub my recordings.
The sound of “Dark Waters, Distant Shores” is collaborative performances by my on acoustic guitars, dobro and vocals (all songs);
https://soundcloud.com/bitzone/bitzone on percussion, bass, atmospheres, keys (all songs);
https://soundcloud.com/unearth-noise on electric guitars, world string instruments (selected songs);
Studio Pros session players on various instruments (selected songs).
The album is available on CD Baby, iTunes and Amazon.
What inspired you to write this release?
It is quite difficult for my to define the inspiration for writing a song…
Sometimes it’s a certain music pattern I want to explore, sometimes it’s some witty,
sharp comment I heard, sometimes dealing with the darkest time in my life…
Any plans to release a video?
Maybe in some distant future ?
Any plans to hit the road?
Not at this time ? Or maybe we will hit the virtual road, we need to explore this idea ?
As an indie artist, how do you brand yourself and your music to stand out from the rest of the artists out there?
Trying to melt together the ancient and the new, trying to give some unfamiliar twist to folk, blues, and classical traditions…
Who have you been listening to lately?
Tom Waits, Pink Floyd, Madeleine Peyroux
Tell us about your passions
My family (let me offer the hackneyed but true phrase – I want to make the world a better place for my child!),
movies (the good ones),
What else is happening next in your world?
I am working on my second album, in the middle of it, very excited for what’s been done so far…
My latest recording are on Soundcloud, check it out!
Thanks for an awesome interview, Yelena!