Q: You released your music video on Earth Day. Can you explain why this
release date was so important for you?
INANNA: Hello PopFad and PopFad readers! Thanks for having me! Releasing on Earth Day was very important to me, because my entire music project is dedicated to nature, animals and the future of the planet. I couldn’t think of a better day to release a powerful environmentalist anthem like “Change”. As long as this project serves as a voice for nature, I will always make something happen for Earth Day.
Q: I find the desert setting in the video intriguing. What drew you to the
desert for this project?
INANNA: We were looking for a sort of desolate place, a wasteland, something that could represent a dry and lifeless Earth in a much unwanted future. One of the best options we could find was El Mirage Dry lake, about one and a half hour from Los Angeles. It was the perfect setting because it’s vast, open and completely dry, there’s almost nothing around. This way we could put the focus on the narrative, the special effects, the costumes and the beautiful evening light on the golden dancers.
Q: You’re a fantastic singer and dancer. Tell us a bit about your background!
INANNA: Thanks so much! I started singing since very little, I composed my first songs at probably 7 or 8 years old. I studied piano, sang in choirs, learned guitar and drums and I always played in bands. My first serious band was an all-female punk band, in the town where I come from (in Italy) – I was 17. After that debut as a lead-singer, I was part of several bands until becoming a solo-singer later on, around 2012, when I was living in Barcelona (Spain). The Inanna project was born here in the US where I am based now, only a couple of years ago, when I started composing and producing music on my own. That really made a difference in my freedom as a creative. I could finally pour all of me and my passions into the music: my alternative pop past, my love for belly dance and Middle Eastern rhythms, and the ecological message. I felt it all came together thanks to this project.
As a dancer, I started dancing classical, modern and jazz since I was 7 years old and I never stopped dancing until now. Around 2005 I discovered belly dance and Middle Eastern dances: I completely fell in love with the style, rhythms and folklore, so I trained in Italy, Spain and Egypt to become an instructor. I had several groups of students back in Spain, but when I moved to Los Angeles, the music project absorbed me completely and I haven’t gone back to teaching belly dance (yet). This year has been challenging for the dance and performance world, but I cannot wait to be back in class or stage and dance together with my mates – and to do concerts of course!
Q: Who are your musical influences?
INANNA: I grew up in the 90s listening to Placebo, Muse, Sigur Ros, Radiohead, PJHarvey, Nirvana, Damien Rice, Skunk Anansie, Björk, Tori Amos… Lately I’m listening to grandson, Aurora, Sevdaliza, Daughter. I’ve always liked alternative and dark sounds, which are always present today in my music.
From the Arab and fusion world, I love Orange Blossom, Natacha Atlas, Niyaz, Beats Antique, Yasmine Hamdan, and of course all the Middle-Eastern classics.
My love for Arabic sounds and rhythms made me want to experiment and merge styles. At the beginning of this project I told myself: I want to create a new genre, something that really represents me, and I want to call it eco-ethno-futuristic pop. I decided to merge contemporary alternative pop beats and soundscapes with ancient Middle-Eastern instruments and rhythms. At first I was insecure if it could work or not, but after some experiments, it did! It feels really satisfying when you manage to find an original sound that is true to yourself.
Q: Are you hoping audiences receive a specific message from “Change?” If
so, what is it? And if not, why not?
INANNA: Change”, more than a song, is a call-to-action, or a protest song against inaction and indifference. It invites to rise, to face together our planetary drama. “Change” speaks from the voice of the youth, from those who are standing up for nature and animals in these uncertain times for the future on Earth. The message is unapologetic and uncompromising: the time to change has come. It is both a message of urgency and of hope. It is a wake-up call and an invitation to ally together and save what we can still save of lands and species. The message of this song, and of all my songs, is definitely what is most important to me, and I am very grateful to see how people are understanding this project on a deeper level. Right now, I wouldn’t be able to write about anything else. This wonderful rich planet is our home, and the time has come to learn to thrive with it, be integral part of it and not above it.
Interviewed by Sarah Scott