AN INTERVIEW WITH…JOANA SERRAT

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JOANA SERRAT. Credit: Elba Fernandez

I only have kind words,” says Joana Serrat speaking of her UK tour so far. “People are very respectful at my show and afterwards they come to buy some records and chat a bit. They tell their thoughts about it [the set] which until now all are good reviews. I am always happy when I tour in the UK.”

The blissful Spaniard is playing intimate shows around the country before heading back to her native Barcelona (Vic, actually) to play at the prestigious Primavera Sound. We spoke ahead of the show at Newcastle Cluny on Sunday, 29th January.

Joana explains, “I feel small venues make me closer to the audience and I love that feeling. I love the connection that surges between the audience, my songs and me.

“All my songs are pretty confessional and intimate, but I feel it is not that easy to go deep and touch people’s soul and look them directly in the eye in big stages.” The festival scene is evidently quite juxtapose to this, however, Joana enjoys it equally. “Big Festivals are great to have fun on-stage. It is a different approach; when you play in front of 10,000 people on the third day of the festival and rock and electronica bands have already played before you the audience wants to have fun.

Laughing, she continues, “What I try is to give them some fun – as much fun as my sad songs can offer!” Joana Serrat can list BBC Radio presenter Lauren Laverne as one of her big name fans. Her last record, Dear Great Canyon, was referred to as the “Pick of the post pile,” by Laverne, and latest LP, Cross The Verge, has been praised also.

“She [Lauren Laverne] said really beautiful things like she loves my songwriting and declared herself a fan! What can I say? I feel very flattered when someone like Lauren, who is well known, says such good things about you.” The praise is well deserved, in my opinion. A collection of ambient, beautiful harmonies and calm, soothing instrumentation demonstrates Joana’s unique blend of charming melodies.

“The reaction has been wonderful. Not only because BBC Radio 6 have recommended the album or the good reviews in several magazines; what really makes me happy is so many people have accepted my invitation to cross certain emotional thresholds with the company of my songs.

“This and the fact my label Loose seems to be happy with me!”

The future is bright for Joana Serrat. These intimate shows are an excellent opportunity to have your heart strings tugged on and an invitation for personal reflection via a set of emotional battering tracks. What does the rest of 2017 hold for Joana?

“I will be touring next in Netherlands, Germany and France. I am opening for my label mates The Handsome Family. Then I’m headed to Texas at  SXSW  Festival and I’m also recording my new album there.”

Tickets for Joana Serrat’s UK shows are available here.

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