TATYANA | 'Shadow On The Wall' Q&A

On the rise is TATYANA; a Uk-based singer, producer and harpist as she shares her bewitching track ‘Shadow On The Wall’ on Sinderlyn. In the lead up to her debut EP also called 'Shadow On The Wall' set for release on July 17th, TATYANA shares the details about her upcoming music in a Modèle interview.

“weightless pop vocals underpinned by her harp and lush, soupy synths.” - Crack Magazine

Born to English and Russian parents, TATYANA debuted with the remarkable track ‘Wild Card’ in March and has gone on to draw acclaim everywhere from The FADER and CLASH to NYLON - who premiered TATYANA’s self-directed ”Shadow On The Wall” lyric video.

In 2018, classically-trained harp player TATYANA walked into an underground rave in London. Thrilled by the sense of community that drove the party, she made it a goal to play her own music in a similar environment someday. That’s exactly what she did the following year. It’s not the kind of show one might expect an artist with her background to play, but this is how things happen in TATYANA’s world – her moves seem surprising until you realize they’ve made perfect sense all along.

TATYANA lived in Holland, Russia, Singapore, and Boston – where she was schooled at Berklee College of Music on a full scholarship – before settling back in her hometown of London in 2017; the transient nature of her upbringing has certainly informed her music. From underground raves to viral YouTube covers to playing the harp on tour with Neneh Cherry, there seems to be no scene that TATYANA doesn’t shine in. Her new music is a multi-faceted product of all of that knowledge, the kind of precisely produced, impossibly catchy pop that takes centre stage.

When asked to describe her music, TATYANA picks a colour instead of a sound. She chooses the colour blue, for the sense of peaceful melancholy that underpins even her most upbeat tracks. It’s not quite sad or happy; like everything with TATYANA, it’s content to sit somewhere in between.

Describe your journey so far building yourself as a musician? 

My journey in music started in childhood - I started to play piano from the age of 3 and half, and right from the beginning I was very lucky to have incredible teachers who pushed me and saw my potential. One day another instrument appeared in my life and the influence of the sound of the harp became the predominant note in the way that i hear and write music. I played in orchestras and sang in choirs, which led to my interest in arrangement and composition. Music and poetry became the most important part of my existence. 

You studied at the private music college in Boston Berklee College of Music - what were your most cherished moments there?

I will never forget the moment when I was selected to receive a full scholarship to Berklee - it was life changing for me. I never expected to study there, and those 4 years of my life were some of the most inspiring, interesting and challenging.

What was the concept behind your last single 'Wild Card’?

The initial point of synopsis for all my work is that life is a stage - (as Shakespeare says) and we’re all actors in it. I like to think about my life as a tapestry and adding to my music and my creative practice are all the emotions that are running through my veins and the stories and myths of my life. With the sounds and the words of my music I want to build a bridge of connection with my audience.

What were your main inspirations behind the track?

The inspiration for Wild Card was the fleeting nature of our lives, the desire to play your cards right, the power of love and radical honesty - all of these are very important elements of my creative process. 

The video for 'Wild Card' displays flower-power and silk, explain the creative process behind the video?

I like to see life as a rich tapestry or painting so in the video, Nwaka (the director) and I created a dream-like scene inspired by Pre-Raphealite paintings which provided us with the imagery of beautiful women dressed in the most incredible clothing - goddesses in flower gardens. 

Describe your experiences touring alongside the groundbreaking 80s rapper Neneh Cherry?

First of all - it was a great honour to be asked to be a part of this tight knit creative collective. One day can count for a year on tour - and in a relatively short period I was able to learn the ropes from one of the most outstanding and iconic performers of our time. 

Who are your favourite people to collaborate with, why? 

I have to be honest - collaboration didn’t really come easily to me before. I was too eager to deliver my own vision, and saw things in a particular light and way. But now i feel like I’m wiser and would really like to explore the collaboration process to see how my vision can be mixed with someone else's.

What's one message you would give to your following? 

It’s very difficult to stop with one - I think my art is multi-coloured and has many different levels of meaning. I would ask my audiences to try to decode what I am trying to say - through the medium of the pop song - and to see beyond the surface. 

Describe what it's like being a self-produced artist? 

I was very lucky to study music production at Berklee - but when I was studying, I was one of the only women on the course. It had always been an ambition of mine to be able to produce my own music because I think it’s time for female artists to be given the same control of their vision as men. I am hugely supportive of my female musician friends producing themselves - I think its incredibly important and I want to see more of it. 

How much tech is used to create your music, explain the tech side of it? 

I am constantly working on upgrading my technical skills, knowledge and equipment. Songwriting and arranging come directly out of technology for me - whether its internally in my DAW or in the gear that I use. Some people reach for a guitar to write, but for me I feel most at home with my laptop and my studio equipment. I would love to have access to an even better equipped studio because new technology or pieces of kit I haven’t dealt with before always spark inspiration in me and I’m always looking to grow and experiment.

Your newest single 'Shadow on the Wall' - will you give us an insight into what to expect? 

The line that always goes through all my creations are my personal experiences. When I wrote this song I wanted to create a visual diary of the intense emotions I was feeling at the time. I experimented with the visuals for this video - filming on Photo Booth in one night and cutting it together myself at 3am. The song is just 3 minutes long but it holds very raw, undiluted emotions - not only sonically but visually. It is a very important piece for me. 

What's ahead for TATYANA in the next 2 years? 

I would like to collaborate with lots of different kinds of producers and other artists - to work in bigger studios and with better equipment, and I hope that one day it will be possible to play concerts and festivals again. I miss performing. But in the meantime, I will still be connecting with my fans online. I also want to pay more attention to my Healing Harp project (sound led immersive meditation) and to put out my first full length record.

"‘Shadow On The Wall’ is a digital love letter. With this song and lyric video, I wanted to explore sincerity in the age of internet romance. It’s everything I can’t say in a text or a message.” - TATYANA

#music #TATYANA #newep #newmusic #wildcard #modèlemagazine #musicmagazine #interview #musicinterview #singer #shadowonthewall