It was the beginning of August when I got a message from Alessandro Ciminata. He shared a link to his Soundcloud profile, and soon enough I was hooked on the track “Demons”. It made a smashing debut in Indie Top 39. I listened to the record non-stop so there was no surprise that it became one of the most streamed tracks of 2017 and out of 390 songs that entered the chart, “Demons” ended up at #3 on the 100 Songs of 2017.
Alessandro describes his sound as introspective songs, led by guitar, shaped by atmospheric and electronic sounds. After graduating from The Institute Of Contemporary Music Performance Alessandro found the way to explore himself and mold all the ideas into songwriting.
How did you manage to create such a haunting sound for “Demons”
Experimenting. I played around with the demo quite a lot. Also, the vision and skills of Richard (producer of Demons) helped a lot. For an artist experimentation is vital
When did you realise music is what you want to do?
I think since the day I was born. I still realise this every single day; I just can’t live without music. It’s my driving force.
Music for me is being true to myself
Who are your music idols?
John Mayer, Alex Vargas, Jack Garratt, James Bay.
Imagine you can collaborate with any artist – name 3 who would be at the top of your list.
Hein Cooper as he’s a great guy and I love his music. John Mayer, to make my
childhood complete and Maroon 5 as I want them to be 6.
I was anxiously waiting for a follow-up release, and I am thrilled “Love Locked Out” was officially released last month. Maybe there is a real-life story behind the song?
It’s inspired by the relationship with my girlfriend; sometimes it’s not easy to understand each other, it’s so easy to lose each other, at the same time it’s so easy to stop, look at each other and go through the barriers by trusting each other.
“Love Locked Out” is an invitation to trust others.
Let’s talk about creativity. How does your creative process look like?
Most of the times, I think ideas are already inside me, I just need to find a way to put them into music/lyrics. I firmly believe music comes from emotions and it should recreate these feelings to the listener, this is why I tend not to overthink when writing my songs. If I like something I keep it, otherwise, I move on to another song. Once I feel the right emotion coming to me, I take my guitar and I improvise chords on it until I find something that recreates the mood of my feeling, then I start mumbling melodies on it and adding lyrics. Once the emotion is captured, I go back to it, and I start my re-draft process to make this feeling purer and stronger.
How do you know the song is finished?
When I am starting to be happy with what I have written, I usually put my song into a demo. I know the song is finished when the demo sounds good to me. Also, when I can perform the same song on my guitar, just vocals, without any other effect/instrument.
In the last 15 years, the music industry has changed drastically. What are the pros and cons of creating music today?
I think we are living in the best time (probably ever) to make music. Technology, the internet, there are so many resources that can help artists make music and share it with as many people as possible. Streaming services, social networks, there are no excuses for artists with a great project not to be making waves. The only con could be competition. Although,
I believe there is room for everyone as we are all different.
What is your opinion on streaming services like Spotify?
They are helpful to an emerging artist growing their fanbase. It’s such a good feeling when I look at my insights on Spotify and realise I got listeners from parts of the world I never been to. This is something crazy and great at the same time That’s why I think this is the best time ever to make music.
Do you agree with Amanda Palmer that music should be given away for free but in return, artists should ask for support directly?
I agree and disagree at the same time. At the beginning of your career, you can’t pretend to make lots of money from your music, at that stage, the most valuable and essential thing artists could ask and receive is support. From people who genuinely love their music, people who are loyal and start going to their gigs, sharing their music with their friends and so on. It is the most difficult thing to earn because it is how artists can make a career. Money is just a natural consequence. Apparently, money is essential, because if you want to make a career, then you’ll need to be able to pay bills from it.
Do you have a song that you’d say “Damn, I wish I’d written it?”.
What was the greatest advice someone has ever given to you?
??Be true to yourself? (Jack Garrat)
What would be your advice for those who would like to create music
Just do it and never stop. You got to start from somewhere, it’s a beautiful journey inside yourself.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
Hopefully making music full-time. Writing, recording and touring!
I’ve always been attracted by fragile people, it’s in my nature to try helping them if something is wrong. Sometimes though, it’s not as easy as it seems
What’s coming for you in 2018?
I’m planning to release a couple of singles before summer, playing gigs and who knows…