SHOOT THE GHOST : Interview with Sophia .
1)Thanks for your time and how do you feel in your time of being interviewed by a South American magazine?
Sophia : I feel really happy and proud to reconnect with a part of myself. I was born in Venezuela and although I don’t speak the language, I’ve always had affection for my birthplace. I’m looking forward to visit South America in the near future
2)Since when have you been in the music world and so far
Sophia :As a professional since 2010 with BLOOD STAIN CHILD. I’ve been studying and playing music all my life, though, but I came out of the closet only recently *laughs* .
3) What can you tell us about your experience with jame still working there ?? What is your opinion about of the diffusion of Japanese bands today?
Sophia : When I used to work for JaME in 2005, we were like 20 people in Greece listening to Visual Kei and even less who knew more than 5 bands. I was crazy about VK, so I wanted to spread the word everywhere.That’s why I created the first community in Greece, through my J-music events in Thessaloniki and Athens. Now J-rock and Lolita or Harajuku street clothing are something you can see on the street sometimes, but back then nobody wore the clothes or knew what the music was about. So I feel proud I was the one who started it all, on an official basis.
Japanese bands today…there is a wave of Visual Kei revival, who actually have some quality in their music, but mostly it’s just copy bands of copy bands. It’s really sad. You see a band and it’s really easy to understand who they’re copying. They don’t even try to hide it. I still like a few new bands, though. There’s still good music in Visual Kei.
4) What can you tell us about your theory or process your preparation on your aesthetic? Where do you base that influences governing or under for it?
Sophia : I believe in the power of beauty and I admire beauty, therefore aesthetics are a big part of what I represent. Of course aesthetics without brains is as useless and boring as food without salt *laughs*. A balance of the two is ideal. I’m clearly influenced by retro European aesthetics and asian/anime aesthetics. Cute, modest, romantic, elegant, as opposed to the raw, vulgar and over-sexualised image, which leaves nothing to the imagination . That’s what the western entertainment industry has cultivated.
I don’t find naked women shocking. I don’t find them special. Every woman has a pair of breasts, two legs, two arms…it’s nothing special. I mean..it used to be revolutionary in the 70s maybe, but now it’s so overdone and people have so much easy sex on theis screens, all around them…they have seen every kind of sexual experimentation, style, or sexy image, that it really doesn’t stand out anymore. It just degrades the women who use it in my opinion. It’s fine being comfortable with your body, but transforming yourself into jerk off material for men is disrespectful for the female sex, the way I see it. I choose to dress for myself, even if my poofy dress makes me look fatter. I love to dress in a cute, fairytale style and feel pretty for myself, as opposed to sexually desirable for others. I want to be an example of self- respect for young people.
5) In chronological order, could you tell us that bands have worked and that led you to work with them?
Sophia : I found BSC on Myspace, when I was still working as a VK Manager/Talent scout. I was helping with overseas promotion in the beginning, but after a year or so, they asked me to join the band, which was a surpise. Soon after joining BSC, I met Intetsu of AYABIE, who asked me to play in their DEATHBIE videoclip. Around the same time I met BSC, I also met MiA, who was still in Toon Factory at the time. After a couple years of knowing each other, I showed him my songs with BSC and he got interested, so I started working with MEJIBRAY since then. My latest work with them, VENOMS.app, was released in august .
Before leaving BSC, my record label had introduced me to a new artist at the time, ZOMBIE SAM and they’d asked me to help him start his career by singing a few songs on his album. So it started out as a favour for my record label, but later I realised that Zombie is a very talented person, so we’ve been working together non-stop since then. He co-produced my album, he plays session guitar in SEASON OF GHOSTS and we also recently established INVICTUS MEDIA, a media company who specialises in Soundtracks, sound design and many other things (www.invictusmedia.org)
6) How you become a member of Blood Stain Child? You still keep contact with members?
Sophia : As I mentioned before, I was working with them and while on a business trip to Japan, I met with Ryu and we hanged out. While talking, he asked me whether I play any instrument and I told him about my musical studies, so he asked for a demo. I immediately received an invitation to join the band, which was a shock for me, because I’d never played music with anybody before. I was too shy. I don’t keep in contact with the members anymore, really. There’s an interview on www.carlbegai.com talking about all the reasons my relationship with BSC ended . Don’t read if you’re not ready for a huge reality slap in the face. I try to live my life without regrets, but sometimes I wonder how the hell I let myself tolerate some situations.
7) Your solo project was born after blood stain child or as a side project at that time?
Sophia : As a side project actually and I was planning on playing only electro-industrial music. Later on, I decided to leave BSC and start my career from 0, so SoG developed into more than a project. It became a band that plays an open-minded mix of genres and caters not only to metalheads or VK fans, but many more people.
8) What are the goals you set out your solo career and how it difference from your musical background?
Sophia : I received both a classical music education but also modern, so I can’t say there’s a huge gap between what I studied and reality, apart from the fact that nowadays I’m very involved in what I do. I don’t just sing, but I also compose and produce. That’s a big difference. I create a complete thing, as opposed to executing a musical composition written by other people. SEASON OF GHOSTS is a motivational project, with eye-opening lyrics and sounds that aim to awaken the audience and have a positive impact on their life. I don’t just play music to play music. I must have an impact. I want my music to help people’s lives to become a little better. That’s success for me.
9) What details could you tell us about the recording of human paradox? Why did you choose to call Human Paradox to your album?
Sophia : The recordings took place in Italy and a bit in Greece. We recorded the album rather fast, but the pre-production took long, because it was my first time doing this, so I was a bit slow. It was worth the pain , though!
Paradox is a Greek word. I wanted to use it to describe the weird human nature. Humans are weird creatures. Our brains are one of the biggest mysteries of the universe. I’ve always been interested in psychology, but my parents wanted me to study Law, soI only studied psychology in my free time. I always found it weird that for example humans choose to love something painful, or someone that hurts them. Humans always desire the things that they cannot have and often they cannot appreciate what they have in their hands. They appreciate it only when they lose it. Human nature is full of tragedies and realising that we are victims of our own emotions, made me come up with the phrase “the human paradox”. Sometimes our logic makes no sense, don’t you agree? As creatures, we’re very imperfect and deplorable. Sometimes, when we work together in peace, we create amazing things. But other times, when we fight in a war, we behave lower than the worst beast. This is also the meaning of the song “Beautiful Eternal Things”. Whoever created humans certainly had a big sense of sarcasm and a bit of sadism *laughs*
10) How was your participation in Princess Ghibli, how you become part of this? Met the famous Hayao Miyazaki?
Sophia : I have not met Mr. Miyazaki, but I heard from the production team that he was jogging listening to Princess Ghibli, which is a huge honour! *laughs* My record label got involved in that project and Studio Ghibli liked my voice, so they hired me! At the time, I didn’t know those albums would be so popular. I’d be more scared during the recordings *laughs
11) If you could share the stage with any band or artist or band who would it be?
I’ve already shared the stage with D, one of my favourite Japanese bands, so this was a big honour! I’ve also shared the stage with famous female-fronted metal bands, like Anneke, Therion, Delain, Liv Kristine etc I don’t idolise people or bands, so I’ve never thought of sharing the stage with anybody specific, but now that you’re asking….hmmm…Motionless in White would be cool. They’re one of the better new bands out there. As long as the band I’ll play with are nice people and not assholes, I’m fine with it *laughs*.
12) What may you tell us about the music scene in Greece? Some bands that are slated to be on the record label collection of our readers obligation?
Gus G. is the hardest working Greek musician I know and also a good friend. Also Rotting Christ are a classic band that you should not miss. You should also definitely check my brothers bands, The Psalm (ex- Nocturnal Vomit) and Walking Stone Giants!
13) We understand that for your debut went to see fans of Brazil. How do feel about this? you hear stories similes to your person?
Sophia : I always feel thrilled when fans from so far away come to see my shows, so meeting Brazilian fans made me really happy! Thank you for travelling so far for that festival! .
14) You’ve done everything you wanted in music?
Not at all! I still haven’t done much in the USA and I still haven’t composed for a Hollywood soundtrack. Let’s see if I make it in the future!
15) What are your favorite artists?
Sophia :There are too many, but Anathema, The Smashing Pumpkins, Malice Mizer and Lareine are the top for me. I love stuff like Placebo, Depeche Mode and a lot of the 90s Britpop scene and the EBM/Industrial/Synthpop scene .
16) What are your hobbies?
I like psychology and observing people. I also like travelling and taking pictures, cooking and creating my own recipes. I love alternative fashion
and creative styles. I love studying, reading and learning every day. It’s what keeps me young I guess. I have tons of hobbies, really! I love taking care of stray cats, but I see that more like a social service, than a hobby. I do it because I feel connected with the animals and I feel it’s my duty to protect them as much as I can.
17) Do you know anything about Chile and south America?
I know that the countries and the nature there is beautiful, the fans are really supportive AND THE FOOD IS AWESOME! *laughs*
18) What are your plans for 2015?
I’d like to tour and I’m thinking of releasing a remix album of THE HUMAN PARADOX. The way I see it, it would feature many artists. It’s just an idea for now, but I like it! I have a tour manager for South America now, so I hope I can see you guys soon! Also you can expect free songs from me and Zombie. We like doing free download covers for our fans, so we’ll definitely come up with something cool!
19) Any message for your readers to give a finishing touch to this interview?
Never do something to others that you would’t like others to do to you. Be nice to each other and love SEASON OF GHOSTS! Much love and light!
✦ Twitter: http://twitter.com/Sophia_Sama
✦ Instagram: http://instagram.com/sophia_somnium/