The big moment has arrived! On October 22, the 18 years old singer-songwriter ZOË will present her debut album in the Viennese Café Francais. How appropriate!
I met ZOË about one month ago and took the chance to ask her about the album, its origins and development.
This is it, your debut album is ready! What is the title?
Haha, quite! (laughs) My first album will be called Debut – a simple yet elegant name. It will contain 12 songs, eleven are already mixed and mastered and I’m currently working at top speed on the last one. It sounds strange to come so close to the release date but it is actually pretty normal in the music business! (giggles)
Which one is the oldest song in Debut?
The oldest song is Je M’en Fous, I wrote it when I was 16 and still in school, mid 2013 I think – such a long time ago! At the time I didn’t have an album in mind, I wrote it just for fun. I had a small concert where I could sing one song – of course Je M’en Fous – and all my friends loved it so much! Really, nobody, not a single one, disliked it. They motivated me to keep writing music.
(NB: Guess what? We have the first time ZOË sang Je M’en Fous on video! The little concert was the live event for the Global Rockstar 2013 Quarter Finals, November 2013, in Vienna. And on the right you can see Global Rockstar co-founder Christof on the guitar!)
Then you stayed true to the very first song you wrote?
Yes, the whole idea of my music style comes from that first song and I absolutely wanted to keep it. When I went into production with some of my acoustic gypsy numbers I was unsure how they would turn out. Would they keep the original spirit I had in mind when I wrote them? I can’t tell you how happy I am that the album is happening the way I wanted it!
What was the biggest challenge in production?
Bringing all songs to the same contemporary beat level that is the characteristic of the album. Some of the songs had a strong beat and electro components from their genesis, others – especially songs about love, very emotional – couldn’t bear any of the unz-unz-unz! I had to compromise between production and mastering to make everything fit together. Some of the slower songs got a bit more commercial, came closer to the beat. I have to confess that not all songs turned out exactly as I had in mind when I wrote them, but if I changed anything, it was of course for the better! Some songs were born acoustic and stay acoustic in the album. And they still fit.
What did you learn from this process?
That you can’t make everybody happy! (laughs) Some of my friends hate the one song and absolutely love another; other friends are exactly the opposite. I know you can’t please everybody with an arrangement, but there is a nice harmony between the songs in Debut. I love it!
To accompany ZOË on stage: Pavel Shalman (violin), Michael Scheed (guitar) and Oliver Steger (contrabass).
If you are in Vienna get your ticket here or 0196096.
ZOË and her band will guide you through her debut album: a journey made of overwhelming energy and youthful joy, with quiet digressions that stir your heart. One moment you stroll with ZOË in 1930s’ Paris, the next you groove in pulse with the time.