The LA-Based Experimental Electro Duo STALGIA Discuss Their Single “BDY”, Their Label, Their Biggest Inspirations and More!
Posted On 27 Mar 2017
In less than a year, Stalgia has racked up 5.4 million streams on Spotify, praise from NPR affiliate KCRW on “Morning Becomes Eclectic,” Noisey, Indie Shuffle, Galore and more.
After premiering their latest hypnotic track “BDY” on electronica centered YouTube channel MrSuicideSheep, the LA-based experimental electro duo, Stalgia will be offering their debut EP via Crooked Paintings. The upcoming EP will showcase Stalgia’s distinguished style that is articulated through sensuous production, confident rhythmic builds, and raw, yet alluring, vocals. Staglia is managed by E. Kidd Bogart who is a GRAMMY nominated and winning producer (Beyonce, Rhianna, Carly Rae Jepsen) who also manages newcomer and 2017 GRAMMY nominated producer Ricky Reed (Phantogram, Meghan Trainor, Lizzo, Smallpools).
Learn more about Stalgia in the following All Access interview:
Thanks for your time! So, now that 2016 is over, what are some words you would use to describe the year for you? What were some of the highlights for the band? What are you most excited about for 2017?
2016 was a year of growth and self-realization. We wrote an album…actually probably 3 albums worth of music. We signed with Crooked Paintings and put out some singles. 2016 was about testing the waters. I say this all the time but the best is yet to come. We are so ambitious. We want to change the way music is heard and felt. In 2017, we want to tour and really show the world what Stalgia is.
Growing up, did you all always want to be musicians? Can you recall some of your earliest musical memories?
B: My parents knew I was a shy kid, and they wanted me to feel comfortable performing in front of people. I remember being in first grade and playing my first talent show and feeling that rush, like this is what I am meant to do in life.
Yaya: I have been singing since I could talk, and the only thing I have ever truly cared for is music. I vividly remember making up songs about anything that I laid my eyes on. I drove my family crazy. Soon after that I joined the children’s choir at my church, which was when I first consciously realized how much I loved to perform and sing. I was very into writing poetry from a very young age as well. I am a sucker for old, sentimental poetry.
Can you talk about how this band first came together? How did you come up with your band name? Was it difficult to settle on one name that described your music?
B: We’ve been playing music together for about 5 years now. Different groups with different names, styles, and members. Stalgia was actually a side project that Yaya and I experimented with. We ended up loving it so much. It was very organic. It slowly became our main project. It just felt like the right time to make a switch. Coming up with a name can be the greatest challenge. I remember being in other groups and it taking us months to settle on a name. But it was so simple with Stalgia, like everything else. I remember creating a sample of a bicycle bell that reminded me of an old family movie. When I played it for some people they said the song should be called Nostalgia. We decided to drop the “No” and that’s how Stalgia came to be. It really was all based off that one song. And it’s cool because she and I have been friends since childhood.
Yaya: The name ‘Stalgia’ is close to my heart. We have been making music together for 6 years now. Stalgia is the symbol of the accumulation of every thought, memory, and moment we have spent in our lives leading up to this present day. Every experience that has made us who we are, and every moment that has influenced the energy/emotion behind our music. Our music would not exist without the nostalgia of our lived experiences; hence the name. The name actually came to us very organically and quickly.
What has it been like working with E. Kidd Bogart that has produced for so many well-known artists? How did you first meet him?
Amazing. Evan is an artist above everything else. He understands the plight of artists so he is very supportive. One of our favorite things to do is sit in a room with him and play him new music, and watch his face light up with ideas. At first it was intimidating meeting Evan, because he had written some of the most prolific songs of our generation. But he’s just a cool guy with a great attitude towards music. He wants to see us grow as musicians. He totally supports our vision. We met Evan through our former manager. We knew right away that we wanted to work with him and his team, to take Stalgia to a new level.
What was the inspiration for your recently released single, “BDY”? How does this track compare to the rest of your debut EP? When do you hope to release this collection?
Yaya: My inspiration for this song comes from my frustration with the cookie cutter point of view that many people have towards life. Life is not black and white, love is not black and white; there is so much grey matter. Do I believe in the oh-so cliché ‘destiny’, or do I believe that you create your own fate? I guess this is a projection of that.As for the rest of the EP, you will have to wait and see. It’s full of emotion, sensuality, and soul. We hope to share this with you as soon as we can.
What has it been like working with your promotional team, Crooked Paintings? Why do you think they are the right place today for your music?
There’s a lot of positivity at Crooked Paintings. We feel lucky to be working with a label who believes in the artists that they sign. We not only get to create music that we back, but get the opportunity to hear from Evan and Eman on a personal level. Two people who have shaped the music industry, and who we have a lot of respect for.
Do you have any upcoming plans to tour?
Once our album wraps, we’re ready to come out swinging.
What musicians continue to inspire your music? Is there anyone that you would all love to work with one day?
B: From a producing stand point, Emile Haynie is a fav and artists like James Blake, Sampha, and Justin Vernon; Bon Iver put out a stellar album this year that inspired me like crazy. When I first heard 22, A Million I couldn’t make music for like 3 weeks. IT FUCKED ME UP. But afterwards, I feel I make the coolest shit. It changes the way I see music.
When you aren’t performing, working in the studio, what do you like to do for fun? How do you two unwind from it all?
B: I like to cook, hike. Right now I’m learning to play guitar. I love fashion, and cinema.
Yaya: I love anything that helps my spirit grow. I love a good bubble bath (ironically, so does Brandon. Ask him about it), I love reading old poetry, going on long runs, being out in nature, or having a good glass of red wine (or a tequila shot, it depends). Sometimes B and I like to just get lifted, listen to old vinyl, and discuss the weird shit that is life.
What do you hope is the message of your music? What do you hope people continue to take away from your songs?
When people tell us that our music has helped them get though a hard time, that’s the most rewarding, that’s our goal. We don’t want to be put in a box. We don’t feel we have a specific genre, we want everyone to be able to enjoy the music we make. When we wrote “Rust” we didn’t know exactly what we were creating. But then all of these EDM blogs started to hit us up asking to feature it and I guess we were labeled as a chill step band. I’ve been told that our music helps people relax and by others that we make sex music. Whatever it is, I want our music to help people in some way or another.
Is there anything else that you would like to share with our readers about your music or the band?
Yaya: We plan on continuously creating music, real music that is written only by us two that will help, guide, heal, open, enlighten, anger, sadden, and awaken. And to match that, we plan to connect with every single one of them at our live shows. The people who support us are just as much a part of Stalgia as Brandon and I. They are all that matters to us.