Photo Credit: Tatum Maclean (@zeustate)
By Alissa Arunarsirakul // March 12, 2020
As many band members do, Dani Le Rose sought out a solo career as she continues to serve as Jade The Moon’s frontwoman. The Vancouver-based electro-R&B songstress is known for incorporating distinct instruments like the accordion or shakers into her energetic tracks. Most recently, she unveiled her compelling self-titled EP, and we’re all for it.
To celebrate the release of her new self-titled EP, we recently chatted with Dani Le Rose about accordions, feeling unloved, and of course, Dani Le Rose.
HH: We truly believe you’re reviving electro-R&B with your self-titled EP. Who are some artists that influence your captivating sound?
DLR: I listened to a lot of rock, R&B, pop, and grunge while I was growing up. My first CD was Boyz II Men. My parents had immaculate taste in music and would put on full records of The Police, Fleetwood Mac, and Led Zeppelin on road trips and I really got into it. I’m currently really into Khalid and Noah Cyrus. I just discovered this song called “Thinking ‘Bout Love” by Wild Rivers and have probably listened to it 80 times in the past week. Mostly though, I like my 70s music like CCR and Van Morrison.
HH: How does your creative process as a solo artist differ from your work with Jade The Moon?
DLR: Honestly, it’s not too different. The songs I write are always coming from a pretty honest place. I guess my solo music is a lot more sexually charged as with a band we try and focus on more introspective subjects. Jeremy and Benjamin are like my brothers so when we get into our writing vibes, we drop into some kind of black hole and come out feeling like we just got out of a massive therapy retreat.
HH: Why did you decide to make your EP self-titled?
DLR: To be honest, I had a deadline and I couldn’t think of anything better, hahaha.
HH: How does it feel to finally have Dani Le Rose out for the entire world to listen to?
DLR: It’s pretty sweet! It’s been cool getting messages from people who are connecting with the music.
HH: Whether it’s the accordions in “Flowers” or shakers in “Body Language,” you’re not afraid to experiment with your soundscape. What’s the weirdest object you can see yourself using as an instrument?
DLR: Probably the accordion was the weirdest one. When we were making the album, we wanted to add a lot of European sounds to have the songs reflect my style and personality. Sometimes I feel like I live in the wrong country and I just want to be in Europe or India. I really badly want to make a song with a sitar or would LOVE to learn to sing bungarra one day. I love music from different cultures and mixing them up. I think Julian Feifel (producer of the EP) and Shayna Zaid (co-writer) thought I was nuts cause I kept asking to put weird instruments in the songs like sitars and group chants. Which reminds me…. I made a song one time with my friend Aaron Ellingson (original member of Jade The Moon) that was called “Come Under.” It was 10 minutes long–complete with a music video chanting, howling, and hypnotic guitar. We never released it–probably because no one would understand or like it but us.
HH: What’s your favorite memory from the “Flowers” music video shoot?
DLR: I am a huge fan of Bruna Arbex, who directed the video. Her mind is wild and her concepts are totally in alignment with my sense of humor. She also directed the video for my song “Shellshock” and I have never laughed so hard in my life. When she came to me with the concept for the “Flowers” video, I was DYING to film it. It took us about two years before it finally came into fruition, but it’s here and I love it. Best memory would be me and my friend Tatum (who played one of the actors in the video and is also an incredible photographer who photographed my album photos for me). The video was filmed in this beautiful Victorian house in Vancouver that had been turned into an art gallery. Little did we know… People were still living in the walls! There was a room in this house that had been thickly covered with paper mache and painted to reflect an igloo. Inside the “igloo room,” we found two secret doors that led into someone’s bedroom! The resident was laying in their bed drinking coke and we spied on them. But only for a minute because then it felt really creepy.
HH: What do you have to say to people who feel underappreciated or unloved?
DLR: That’s a loaded question. This last year has been one of the hardest years of my life for many reasons. My husband had fallen really sick and was in and out of the hospital, my uncle unexpectedly passed away and I had bills piling up and had to put everything on hold–including my album and some things with Jade The Moon.
I think everyone has been in some kind of shitty situation at some point in their lives and that is just life. I think the thing that really helped me get through was knowing people were patient enough with me ditching out on things and also being reckless because I was so lost. Crying at a coffee meeting is not something I do… I don’t really cry, but last year I cried a lot. It was awful. Sometimes life sucks. I think the thing that really helped me was simply feeling gratitude for the good I had left. Gratitude for at least having somewhere to live, a roof over my head, and air to breathe. Sometimes those things can be enough to give you hope. But trust me, no one is unloved even if it feels that way sometimes.
HH: What are your three hidden hits?
DLR: “Thinkin ‘Bout Love” by Wild River. “The Few Things” – JP Saxe & Charlotte Lawrence. “Say So” – Doja Cat.