The Very Promising Songstress, SARA HARTMAN Discusses Her Debut EP, “Satellite”, Her Recent Tour With Ellie Goulding And Her Upcoming Tour With X-Ambassadors!
Posted On 25 May 2016
After racking up millions of streams on her introductory singles, New York-born and Berlin-based pop songstress SARA HARTMAN released her debut EP, “Satellite” this April.
The four-track collection includes her most recent single “Two Feet Off The Ground” which generated over 1 million Spotify streams in less than a month, but the EP is driven by its lead track “Satellite”. Talking about the song, Sara says:
“It started as a small chain of thought lyrically but then became a kind of anthem for me” explains Hartman, continuing “It’s a call to arms disguised as a love song. It made me feel strong in being honest and vulnerable which set a tone for the rest of the record.”
Tempering her robust heavenly voice with acoustic instrumentation and cinematic electronic soundscapes, it showcases her magical and massive signature sound first introduced on the EP’s “Monster Lead Me Home”— which recently crossed the 11-million mark on Spotify.
Sara Hartman recently wrapped a string of sold out international dates supporting Ellie Goulding as well as a German tour with MS MR. Returning stateside, Sara will be opening for X Ambassadors on their upcoming tour.
One of the select few “year-round” natives of Sag Harbor, she transformed a passion for music into weekly gigs at various restaurants around The Hamptons as a teen. At 19, she left the country for the first time and headed to Berlin in order to pursue music. Writing constantly, she fashioned a sound that blurs the lines between electronic and acoustic, emerging with a fresh fire and attitude all its own.
Learn more about Sara in the following All Access interview:
Thanks for your time today! How’s 2016 been treating you so far? What were some of the highlights of 2015 for you and your music?
You’re very welcome! So far, 2016 has been way too good to me. I found out in January that I was opening for Ellie Goulding in Europe and I’ve had to pinch myself quite often since then. I feel like 2015 was the year I decided to put it all on the line and 2016 is when it’s starting to look like it was not a terrible decision! Kidding! But it means so much to release these songs that document one of the biggest changes in my life to date. It’s very exciting.
Growing up, did you always know that you wanted to be a musician? Can you recall your earliest musical memory? Can you talk about why you decided to move to Berlin to pursue your music career?
I didn’t always want to be a musician but I always had a deep desire to make stuff and share it with people. I remember getting a drum set for Christmas when I was 11 and realizing I could use musical instruments to do just that. It became a form of therapeutic expression. I started playing in restaurants and bars in the Hamptons as a summer job and ended up playing for a man who introduced me to a producer in Berlin, Tobias Kuhn. He ended up being my creative partner in crime for my album. I was so excited about the music we were making and I had a chance to follow my dream of sharing it with the world, so to me there wasn’t really a choice. I had to go.
You recently released your debut EP, “Satellite.” What did that feel like? How long had you been working on it?
The release of the Satellite EP is huge for me emotionally. It’s just the first taste of the record but it starts to tell the story. I have been working on it for almost a year now and these songs have kept me going when I go homesick or scared. It’s pretty intense to share these songs but I am very proud.
How exactly did that song on the EP set the tone for the whole collection?
Satellite was one of the first songs I wrote for the album. It was my first time being in Berlin and everything was so new and exhilarating. I put that directly into the lyrics. Before these songs I was writing stories about other people and places, with this album I wanted to tell my story. I felt so vulnerable but so strong.
Generally, what do you think it is that inspires you to write music?
Now more than ever I write to process everything that is going on around me.
I’ve been keeping journals on tour with me so I can document all of these crazy experiences I’m having. But people always inspire me. Peoples stories, people’s feelings, the way people look at things, the things people think are important… I could go on forever.
What was it like opening for Ellie Goulding and MS MR on tour? What do you think you learned from that experience? Are you excited to head out on tour with X-Ambassadors next month?
Beyond excited for X Ambassadors! I finally get to play a tour in the US. And on the East Coast! So excited to bring the show back home. I loved touring in Europe. It was such an adventure being on tour with Ellie, I will never forget playing those stages. And MSMR are the some of the coolest performers I’ve ever seen.
Do you have a favorite show? Where were you and what made the show so memorable? What do you think makes a perfect gig?
No question the audience makes the perfect gig. You can have good sound, lights, guitar sound etc… But I only get real chills when the audience is giving you everything. The exchange of energy is what I live for as a performer. There was a show in Zurich where people took out their phones during a song about my sister (she’s 7 and I was missing her particularly bad that day) and to see an arena full of little lights shining back at me moved me to shed a happy tear on stage. A lot of the Ellie Goulding shows were truly unforgettable.
What was it like playing at SXSW this year? Was it your first time?
This was my first year at SXSW and I have to say the vibe is contagious there. The whole city is buzzing with new and creative ideas. It was crazy chaotic and I loved it!
Who are some of your favorite artists? Who would you love to tour and/or collaborate with in the future?
A big piece of my heart will always belong to Patti Smith. I would like to be her when I grow up. But recently I’ve been listening to Jack Garratt, Alan Rayman and Bibi Bourelly. There are some really cool artists coming up this year.
At the end of the day, what do you hope is the message of your music? What do you hope listeners take away from your songs?
At the end of the day, I am sharing a part of my story. A part with lots of homesickness and getting lost in a big city. Also a part I get to spend with some of the coolest people I have ever met, making and performing all over the world the music I believe in. I know I can’t be alone in feeling small and scared while trying to learn to stand up on my own. I hope these songs can help people the way they helped me get through a lot.
Sara Hartman Links: