Cloudy Galvez – Exclusive GIGsoup Interview

This week GIGsoup sat down with singer/songwriter Cloudy Galvez to chat about her multitude of up and coming projects. The 21 year old is truly a marvel. She’s one of those rare people who seem to find time for everything even when there seemingly isn’t enough to go around. Whilst still studying towards her music management degree, she is still able to balance a fully flourishing musical career and even has an ambitious, youth centered festival in the works for next year. Truly she is special in her work ethic, and has the vibrant manner of someone who is genuinely excited by life.

How did you come to be at the stage you are now in your music?

When I’m performing live now, I do a big continuous set. I don’t really stop and the bits in the middle are all improvised. It ebbs and flows; I have parts where I talk to people too. This all started when I was about 15 and I discovered an artist called Estas Tonne. He does an hour mix of coninutous music. It’s actually incredible and as a guitarist I was so inspired. I thought: I want to do that but I want to sing, That’s where the genral live style came from.

The vibe of my studio tracks now have a lot of latin routes; in terms of rythmn and structure. It’s one of those subtle things that, if I hadn’t said it you probably wouldn’t have noticed it. But yeah, a bit of jazz with some modern pop culture coming through. Doing my best to stay interesting.

Before that turning point at 15, were you very much interested in music then?

100%, my Mum always tells me (not sure if it’s true or not), that I was singing before I was talking, She would say that when I was about 2, I would sit on our back garden swing and the neighbours would say: “Is that Cloudy singing?”. You know; on that nursery rhyme hype.

What was your favourite nursery rhyme to hype?

I loved me a bit of twinkle twinkle.

So, you’ve been turning heads for a little while now with the voice?

I’d like to think so! It’s one of those things that I didn’t really seriously persue for a long time. I went to one of those stage schools for a while, but it wasn’t until I was eleven that I stole my brother’s guitar and never gave it back. He didn’t need it.

Was there someone who you were listening to at that age that influenced where you were heading?

Did you ever listen to KT Tunstal? When I first heard her first album (‘Eye to the Telescope’), I was just like; “Wow”. I remember being in a pub one day and I heard ‘Under The Weather’ and then ‘Heal Over’ come on and I was just like; “yeah, this is really cool, I’d really like to make music in that style”. The tracks go from being sad in tone and then going into something which is a bit more hopeful and upbeat. They’re in two different time signatures and have completely different moods, but there was a sense that this artist had a sound. I thought; I want a sound.

Do you think you’ve achieved a sound?

I think I’m getting there. In music you’re never done. But my music is starting to sound like I want it to sound for sure, but it’s still lacking a few things. That’s only because my ears are like, ten years ahead of my body. So no, I think with some of the interesting ways I’ve been using my guitar recently; like how I use my capo and things like that, using open chords…

So you’re very much on the tecnhincal experiments side of things?

Absolutely. I think it comes from never having lessons and just making it up really. I’ve never really lost that experimental starting point. To me, if it sounds pretty, it works.

Would you say that theres something to be gained from not being formally taught

I think that there is certainly. I would say you’re maybe a bit more creative in the way you work and you’re not as bound up by key signarutres and whatnot when you’re making music. I have since been trained, so I have that side of things too. Sometimes, what we would call bum notes actually sound quite nice in the mix.

You so have your new project coming out on the 15th, how long has that been in the works?

It’s a bit of a mix to be honest; theres a track on there which is about five years old and there are some which are a lot more recent. The actual project as a whole has been in the works for about a year and a half I would say. I wanted my band to play all the tracks in the studio, so we can transitioning into playing it live easily.

You’re in the final stages now then?

Yep, the mixing and mastering is done. We’re just waiting for the release date now and trying to get it out to as many people as possible really!

Is it a self released project?

I toyed with the idea of releasing it on a label, but I don’t think I need one before I have an album. The shorter the project, the more control you can have over the tracks. There are three tracks on this EP and I’ve decided which will be the first single, the second single ect. But with an album, theres a lot more to consider. That’s the point when I would bring in the support of a label to help me.

What can we expect from the sound of your next EP?

That’s an interesting one; I would say, acoustic soul with a bit of a modern pop vibe. I feel that comes across well. I think that having it defined like that has definetly helped me look at my work and say “yes, that’s what it is and it’s still true to what it is”.

Would you say putting your work into genre categories is a helpful thing for you?

I really do. I never really knew how to describe my music to people, and if you’re trying to engage them in conversation it’s very difficult to put across. I just sound like me! But having those kind of adjectives is very helpful. People want to know what  you’re doing and it’s really useful to have the vocabulary to describe it to them.

One of the tracks was actually premiered on BBC Introducing last night. But I was at a festival in Cornwall preforming and missed the whole thing. I checked my phone on the bus on the way home and my phone was blowing up! We found it on IPlayer later.

Speaking of festivals, your side project, which mine become your main project, I you’re putting on a youth music festival next year?

Yeah, the festival is called Fountain of Youth and it’s basically trying to encourage young people to get involved with music and the music industry. A lot of young people out there, just don’t know what it’s like to work on live events. My sixth form for sure, didn’t offer any kind of training like that! We’re wanting to put the festival on in West London and there aren’t a lot of other music events going on in that area. It’s perfect opportunity, I think, to get performers, cast and crew all together who are under 26. The plan is to create loads of jobs and opportunities for people.

So you want to get people in touch with what kind of work is available? Are you planning to have workshops?

Yeah, obviously we’ll have a main stage. I’d like to have a sponsored tent. I’ve been talking to Sofar Sounds about this, but we’ll see. The tent will be max 200 capacity, and it will be like £2 extra to get into this tent. The tickets will be cheap for sure anyway, as it’s a youth festival. We’ll have another area that does workshops and masterclasses and stuff like that. People can talk about all the different elements of the music industry and their work in it. I just need to sit down with it and work out which sort of workshops would be best.

How do you go about balancing music and party atmosphere and maybe quite ficused and serious workshops?

Fountain of Youth is stil in it’s infancy obviously, but I think what we might do is have the event staggered. We might have breaks in the music where we put on a mix of local artists music. Again, everyone who’s made that music will be under 26. Whilst the artists are playing, we want to have a screen up with all tracks that are currently being played. So you can see where to find it. So you know exactly where to look and find their work. I was also thinking about maybe having a networking session a bit later in the evening.

So at the moment, you’re in the preliminary stage?

Yeah, getting funding. Getting advice from people, that kind of thing.  All of the funding that I’m looking at requires that you put together 10% yourself so we’re going to get on the crowd funding hype soon.

When are you ideally wanting it to be ready?

I would absolutely love to have it on spring bank holiday next year. If I get everything ready and have my funding, it should be achieveable . It’s really important that it’s on May bank holiday. There aren’t many festivals around that time in the part of London that we’re looking at. And the concept of spring is really important too; spring is a time where everything is young and growing again, and obviously that’s really important because it’s a youth festival.

You can check out Cloudy’s new EP ‘Dust Under The Rug’ on the 15th September.