INTERVIEW: Robyn Cage

INTERVIEW:

 

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PHOTO CREDIT: Image by Shaun Anders

 

Robyn Cage

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WITH an impassioned and expressive voice…

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PHOTO CREDIT: Carla Boecklin Photography

there is something rather special about Robyn Cage. She has captivated audiences from Boston’s Symphony Hall to stages across N.Y.C. Cage is an actor too and trained at the Boston Conservatory – praised by sources as wide as The New York Times and Variety. As a musician, she has produced some sensational works that draw the listener into a wonderful world – most vivid of all in her album, Born in the Desert. I talk to Cage about her life in Utah and what it was like getting such high kudos for Born in the Desert. She discusses her acting career and artists who have inspired her. With so many fans responding to her music; I ask whether new material is in her mind. With Trump as President, I was curious to know how much fear and anxiety there was in the U.S. and what her reaction (to that appointment) is. Cage talks about the albums she holds dearest and whether there are any plans in regards touring the U.K. and Europe.

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Hi, Robyn. How are you? How has week been?

Hey! Things here are totally insane but in the best way! In the past week, I’ve received the finished masters for my next album, did a photoshoot for the album artwork; shot a music video and played four shows.

For those new to your music, can you introduce yourself, please?

I’m a singer/songwriter/keyboardist with a love for nature and a tendency to set instruments on fire. My music is Alternative/Pop and it’s dark, dreamy and often story-driven.

You are from Salt Lake, Utah. Is there quite a big music scene there? How does it compare with the larger cities/areas of the U.S.?

Surprisingly, the music scene in Utah is incredibly vibrant! I now live in the mountain resort town of Park City and the support for live music here is fantastic.

Also, in Provo, there is a lot of really fresh original music emerging – especially Synth-Pop.

You have played everywhere from Boston’s Symphony Hall to stages around N.Y.C. What has been the most memorable gig you have ever performed?

I headlined a show for an audience of several thousand people at Deer Valley: a majestic venue where you’re watching the sun set over a backdrop of mountains. It’s the most fun I’ve ever had playing a live show, and that’s really saying something!

In addition to music, you are a professional actor. What compelled the decision to turn to singing and do you bring any of your acting talents into music/video-making?

As much as I love acting, I felt strongly that I needed to create something original and to tell my own stories rather than just bringing someone else’s characters to life. Because of my acting background, making music videos is one of my favourite parts of this job – best of both worlds.

Raining Sideways was your 2009 debut E.P. How do you feel you have changed since then and evolved as a performer?

Haha, yeah. I had no idea what I was doing when I recorded that E.P. I just wrote a few tunes and dove right in. I was very much in the process of discovering who I wanted to be as an artist. I’m still evolving and I hope I will always continue to evolve – keeps things interesting.

PHOTO CREDIT: Carla Boecklin Photography

Born in the Desert arrived a couple of years ago. It got a lot of love and attention. What was it like receiving that sort of acclaim?

The press I got from that album was incredibly validating.

I had created an album that I loved and I was proud of my work – but you never know, until you release it into the world, how people will respond.

The U.S. is quite divided under Trump right now. Is there a lot of tension where you are and how does this influence you as a songwriter?

Absolutely. The tension here is palpable. Although I never intended it to be this way, the 2016 Election was a huge influence on my upcoming record. The only way I knew to process all the fear and divisiveness was to allow it into my songwriting. The title track from my upcoming record, Slow the Devil, is the closest thing to a protest song that I’ve ever written.

Florence and the Machine, Fiona Apple and Tom Waits (among others) count as influences. Who were the artists and bands you grew up listening to?

Tori Amos was probably my biggest influence growing up. She wasn’t just another girl with a piano.

Tori brought this raw power, sexuality; aggression and vulnerability to her music – the first time I heard her music was a defining moment in my life.

Other major influences were PJ Harvey, Björk, and Kate Bush: goddess status.

Is there going to be a new Robyn Cage E.P. or album this year at all?

Yes! My upcoming record, Slow the Devil, will go on pre-sale via Kickstarter in May and will be available in the Fall.

Can we expect any tour dates coming later this year?

I’ll be touring the U.S. October-November to promote the new album.

We would love to see you in the U.K. Any plans to come and play here at all?

I’m planning to tour Europe in spring ’18.

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Which albums have meant the most to you as a musician?

Tori AmosLittle Earthquakes (let’s be honest, though, it was really all of her first four albums)

Fiona AppleTidal

Susanne SundførThe Silicone Veil

Nick Cave and The Bad SeedsAnd No More Shall We Part

Florence + the MachineLungs

PJ HarveyTo Bring You My Love

Kate BushHounds of Love

RadioheadOK computer

BjörkDebut

St. VincentStrange Mercy

Who are the new artists you recommend we connect with?

For some reason, I’ve been drawn to Norwegian artists lately. Susanne Sundfør is probably my favorite living artist right now.

AURORA is making beautiful music and I just recently discovered Eivør (loved your interview with her!).

I’m also a big fan of Grimes, FKA twigs; Agnes Obel and iamamiwhoami.

Have you any advice for new songwriters emerging at the moment?

Be fearlessly you: I tell myself this every day.

Finally, and for being a good sport, you can select a song and I’ll play it here (not one of your own as I’ll do that).

Susanne SundførThe Silicone Veil

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Follow Robyn Cage

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Official:

http://www.robyncage.com/

Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/robyncagemusic

Twitter:

https://twitter.com/robyncagemusic

Instagram:

https://www.instagram.com/robyncagemusic/

SoundCloud:

https://soundcloud.com/robyncage

YouTube:

https://www.youtube.com/user/robyncage

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