Sophie Negrini of Janelane Does the TribeLA Musicians Acrostic Interview

photo by Charlotte Patmore

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Natalie Durkin (TribeLA): Give your band a Tagline.

Sophie Negrini (Janelane): Oh no I am bad at this…”Always crying” ?

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ND: What got you started in music? What is the Reason you are where you are today?

SN: Music has always been second nature, as I grew up with parents that were opera singers. However, they rarely (if ever) forced any sort of musical development upon me and just encouraged me to do whatever I wanted to do. I took violin in Elementary school and started participating in school musicals, and then began writing songs in my pre-teens while simultaneously delving into pop and rock music. I credit my love for rock and roll to my older sister’s unhealthy Beatles obsession in high school, and to AOL music on Demand (weird channel our TV used to have) for helping me discover Garbage at 8 years old. I used to pretend to play guitar in the mirror when I was 12 and finally just said [screw] it and got on www.ultimate-guitar.com and taught myself “Ur So Gay” by Katy Perry. Writing songs just kind of happened naturally as a way for me to get out those pent-up preteen emotions.

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ND: What effect (Influence) do you hope to have on us?

SN: I want to make music that will make you smile in remembrance of what once was…with a single tear falling down your face. It means so much when people tell me that listening to Janelane helped them get through a breakup, because music has always been my #1 coping mechanism for emotional pain. To know that I’ve created something that can make one feel as strongly as I’ve felt listening to certain songs means I’ve done my job. I won’t be finished writing a song until the lyrics feel completely true – if I’m creating something that will live longer than myself, I want it to be as real as possible.

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ND: What do you do when you’re Blocked? 

SN: I love to draw and paint! Recently I’d been going through a rough time and had terrible writer’s block…I needed a creative outlet that I wasn’t emotionally tied to because I had a bad association with anything related to music. I got really into drawing kinda stupid Cupie doll cartoons of little girls and ghosts, and now I draw constantly when I’m not making music. It has really helped to clear my head while still doing something creative- and the best part is, I don’t beat myself up over messing up my artwork (like I would for music) because it’s purely a hobby.

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ND: What fires you up and gives you Energy?

SN: Sugarfree redbull and Trader Joe’s turkey jerky.

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ND: Can you tell us a Little known fact?

SN: I am one of the biggest smart asses you will ever meet and will rarely pass up the opportunity for a good joke (even if it may get me in trouble). Also I saw Fred Armisen at Disneyland once.

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ND: Where is your favorite place in Los Angeles? Where would you take visitors? If you could defend the city in one sentence to someone who doubts it, what would you say?

SN: I love Pasadena, which is where I grew up. There are so many beautiful old craftsman homes nestled on every street, and I never get sick of dawdling around awestruck at how pretty they look surrounded by all of the trees. However, my “LA” routine for out of town friends is usually taking them to Amoeba on Sunset and then to one of my favorite Diners in Echo Park (Astro or Brite Spot). If I had a car I would take them to Melrose to go thrifting or to the Fairfax Flea Market and then go to Canter’s Deli. But I haven’t a car. My sentence would be “[Screw] you LA is the best… you don’t know what you’re talking about.”

It really is the best.

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ND: Briefly chronicle your creative process. How do you Make art?

SN: Step 1: boy breaks my heart. Step 2: I go home and cry. Step 3: I caress my guitar. Step 4: I pick up a pen and paper but sometimes use notes on my iPhone.

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ND: What is coming Up?

SN: I am looking forward to our debut record! I don’t know exactly when it will be ripe for picking but I think it will be within the next couple of months, and I am so excited to let all of these songs breathe in their final form. It has been a long process but I ain’t a hasty [gal].

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ND: Describe your Style – musically and otherwise.

SN: All over the place – I kinda go back and forth between 60’s/70’s and 90s music and fashion. Right now I’m in my ‘lil 60s/70s bubble and spend most days painting and listening to Something/Anything by Todd Rundgren in my bell bottoms. There’s something about that era that feels so timeless and homey to me, which I think has a lot to do with my sister being irrationally obsessed with The Beatles and 60s culture when we were growing up.

Late nite doodle sleep tite ❤️

A post shared by sopher grace (@sophienegrini) on

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ND: What is the best advice you’ve received and the best advice you can Impart on us?

SN: The best advice I’ve received was from Steven McDonald (bass player of Redd Kross and OFF!) after a Redd Kross show at The Roxy in 2012. He told my sister and I to “make music that you want to listen to” – it sounds so simple, but it really resonated with me and made me hyper-aware of the music I make. I do not own a loop pedal. I am a bubblegum-pop fiend. I’ve realized this year that I know nothing so I have no advice for you. Eat your vegetables. Don’t smoke.

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ND: Any Closing remarks?

SN: 

I am not afraid to keep on living
I am not afraid to walk this world alone
Honey, if you stay
I’ll be forgiven
Nothing you can say can stop me going home

-Gerard Way

 

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