New to DCWS is our exclusive interview with Las Vegas based neo-soul influenced singer-songwriter and producer Sabriel, who just released the visuals for her single “By The Light”. We’ve selected Sabriel’s video as our DOPEST Video of the Week, simply put, because it’s a dope visual representation of her song, and now we're following that up with a Q&A.
Enjoy our conversation with this talented artist and be sure to stream “By The Light” on Spotify, connect with Sabriel on social media and check out her website. Sabriel’s already a very accomplished artist but we expect her to take it to the next level of success in 2019 and we look forward to sharing more of her music very soon!
Tell us about your creative process when it comes to song development. Is your creativity sparked in a certain location like the recording studio or while driving?
My creative process is always changing, which is good for someone like me who is always looking for something new. I’m most comfortable when a thought pops in my head randomly and then I revisit that thought over and over until it’s a full idea. But I’ve also been trying to write in ways that I’m not comfortable with, too. Like sitting at a piano and writing an entire song right then and there. That is so new for me!
We're huge fans of your new video "By The Light". Tell us about how you connected with the director and came up with the treatment of the video. Also, what message are you conveying in the video?
Thank you!! I met Monica Mejia in high school, and we recently reconnected over our love of “Nacho Libre” quotes. We knew we wanted to do something totally weird, with inspiration from Tim and Eric and odd infomercials and 80’s workout videos. We just wanted to make something we could really have fun with, since most of my stuff is very serious and dramatic. She knew who I was outside of my music, which is just a goofy person who loves to laugh! My original idea was still to be dazed out watching myself as characters on TV, and it was awesome to get together with Monica to make that dream a twisted reality!
As for the message and meaning, I will basically say that it’s about a consumer’s relationship with TV and reality, but I really love leaving the rest up to the viewer. Everybody has their own take depending on how they connect with the art they interact with and I love that! I would be super interested to know what people get from it.
What initially inspired you to write the "By The Light" song itself? Did you produce it also?
I wrote “By The Light” literally by the light of a television screen. My piano sits right under my TV, and it was a long night of just sitting alone in a dark room with the television on. It felt so lonely and bizarre, so I had to write a song about it. And yes, I did produce it! It was the 2nd song of mine that I fully wrote, produced and recorded (except for vocals) all on my own. Which I am very proud of!
You have written and recorded songs that have appeared on both the small and big screen, performed at several major festivals, including the Life is Beautiful music festival and SXSW and you've released an EP and album. What would you say has been your biggest musical accomplishment thus far?
Oh man, I think all of my accomplishments feel so big and make me so happy. But, my favorite accomplishment (so far) is getting my music into the hands of the Japanese audience via the label Sweet Soul Records in Shibuya. Becoming familiar with an audience outside of America has been a truly humbling experience and I can’t wait for more of that.
But also, taking a chance on myself in 2018 and stripping away everything I knew, from writing and performing and putting myself out there in a ton of new ways is my favorite personal accomplishment.
What are some your goals musically in 2019?
I have SO many goals for 2019, some that I’ll have to announce a little later. But I for sure want to come out with an album. I’m really digging deep into my songwriting and producing for it! Also, I want to continue to grow and throw myself into uncomfortable situations. I think this is the year of Sabriel. I can feel it.