Interview: Claudia Is On The Sofa
What got you into music, and if you had not gotten into music what would you be doing today?
When I was a child I used to spend my holidays in the mountains singing with my mother and my sister to frighten the snakes. I have never stopped singing since then.
Besides music, I love writing. I have studied literature and I love to read.
In another life, I think I would have become a forest ranger, with the sky over my head and trees all around me.
What do you like to do when you are not playing music and how does that influence your creativity?
I love to go everywhere with my hand recorders and explore the soundscapes all around me. I love to stay and listen. I love recording sounds and be amazed by what the sounds tell me and by everything that happens around me.
This keeps me in touch with the world outside me. With curiosity I feed my creativity.
How long has your band been around?
I recorded my first album called Love Hunters in 2012. Before this I was playing all around Italy with my band Claudia Is On The Sofa. I love to play my songs before to go into the studio and record them.
Where are you based out of and how did that influence your music?
I live in Brescia, a small Italian town located close to Milan and Verona. In the past there was a lot of music and art in my town, so I meet and spend a lot of time with musicians and artists.
Because of these connections it was possible for me to feed my passion and improve my skills.
How did you come up with the name of your band and what does it mean to you?
The sofa is a place where people usually love to stay and relax, but even enjoy or work. The sofa is a comfortable place that you can share with people you like and love. It is a place where you can stay and think just by yourself. It is a place where you can be what you like to be.
Tell me about your most memorable shows.
I really enjoyed being the opening act for a Thurston Moore concert. He is a great musician and I’m a curious person. I learned a lot watching him and his band, their sound check and their humanity on and down the stage.
More recently I loved to play at Liverpool Sound City, it is a great festival with people sincerely and deeply connected with music.
What is your favorite venue to play at, and do you have any places you want to play that you have not already?
I love to play everywhere, my stages are lakes, theaters, small, smoky clubs and big festivals. There are lots of places where I would like to play. First of all anywhere in the USA, even a small country club.
There is a place in my heart where I’d love to play one day, It is called Vittoriale Degli Italiani, it has been the house of an Italian poet. Here, there is an open air theater overlooking the Garda Lake. A lot of great musicians have played on that stage and I’d love to play there one day too.
If you could play any show with any lineup, who would be on the ticket?
Definitely Feist, Wilco, Joan As A Police Woman, Beth Gibbons and Bjork.
What is some advice that you would give to someone who is just getting into playing in a band and some advice that you would give to your younger self?
If you could go back in time and give yourselves advice, what would it be?
Look for and find people and artist that can lead you and help you everyday
Of your songs which one means the most to you and why?
Definitely my latest single The Match (at the moment). It is the encounter and the clash between you and I, between me and I, between what I want and what I can be, between what I wish and what happens.
It is the moment when I ask myself are you sure you want to carry on and get serious? I am not a goddess, not even a Star. I know how to hit myself and how to kiss myself.
Which songs are your favorite to play and which get requested the most?
The song “If Jesus” because it is one of the first songs I wrote for my project Claudia Is On The Sofa and because it makes me feel free.
What is the creative process for the band, and what inspires you to write your music?
I sing about the lives of people on the street, the roar and the silence. I sing of the beauty of nature and the stories of people. I’m a songwriter and I write my songs all by myself.
My last songs are the result of a journey that developed alongside research that led me to retire to a special place, in winter, cradled only by the clouds which broke between the mountains, listening to her internal and external soundscapes.
What kinds of messages do you like to get across in your music?
My aim is to give people good and intimate moments through my music. I love to make them go more deeply into their feelings or simply tell them some tales.
My new single The Match is a hymn to recognize yourself even if there is something that you do not like or others don’t like. It is a recognition of yourself during the time of your life, staying conscious in the awareness of the present moment.
Do you ever have disagreements in your band, and how do you get past them?
I’m a songwriter and I have played and play with very good musicians whom I respect and admire.
My never ending partner is my guitar called Emmylou Ribs, sometimes we have some disagreements, but we always pass them at the end.
What are your plans for the future, and do you have anything that you want to spotlight that is coming up?
I will release a new single in Autumn. It is produced in collaboration with Alessandro “Asso” Stefana (who collaborates with PJ Harvey and Vinicio Capossela among others) recording each instrument live, paying close attention to the sound and to the atmosphere in which to immerse the listener.
I love it and I’d like to play it with concerts all over as much as I can.