Eleeza Silva On Chicago’s Global Influence
Written by Vocalo Radio on April 22, 2020
Chicago singer-songwriter Eleeza Silva has been performing since she was little. Now, with the drop of a few new singles, including “Pecado” which you might recognize from our In Rotation, she’s ready to truly run with her music.
After falling in love with “Pecado,” a smooth and sexy Latin Alt song just perfect for summertime cruises down Lake Shore Drive, we were delighted to find out that her latest single “Steam” is now available on Spotify, SoundCloud, and Bandcamp.
We spoke to her about all the inspiration and talent Chicago has to offer, all the extra time she has to create something more thoughtful now, and the need for greater support of womxn in the music industry today.
Tell us about yourself… How would you describe your work to someone in a few sentences?
I grew up performing music with my dad in different Latinx bands. He believed in me and enrolled me in local music schools to learn how to play more instruments and study opera. That’s really the start of how I became such a versatile artist. I started making YouTube cover videos around the age of 13 and that’s when the growth of my music community started.
Where in Chicago are you from?
I moved all around the city when I was growing up, even out to the suburbs every once in a while. I’ve been working out here for a while now and I’m currently living in Bridgeport.
How has Chicago’s music scene influenced the work that you do?
I think the Chicago music scene is pressed for music right now and that had a huge effect on my work ethic and my drive to get more music out there. The city is full of inspiration. Everything and everyone is so unique here. No one is afraid to be themselves and we all have a drive for a bigger platform because we all deserve it. Chicago is full of talented individuals that influence people around the world and still don’t get the credit they deserve.
A few months ago you were featured on a few “Artists to Watch in 2020” lists. What has it been like releasing songs after receiving praise like that?
The support I received was really special to me. I was grateful for the recognition of my hard work and I’m eager to share more music with everyone. The process of making new music has been slowed down quite a bit, but now I feel like I have the time to create something a lot more thoughtful.
You’ve dabbled in several genres – from Hip Hop to Indie to Lofi – and now one of your latest singles, “Pecado,” is Latin Alt. What drives you to dip your hand in so many genres?
I like change [production styles] so much because I listen to such a wide variety of music. I enjoy singing all genres from Lofi Jazz, Synth-Pop, Alternative, Dancehall, and Latin R&B. I’m not afraid to take a risk or experiment with new sounds.
What was the inspiration behind “Pecado?”
Like every other artist, I’m very expressive with my music. Pecado was written about the current relationship that I’m in, which actually happens to be the producer, Ondrcs.
What do you think is missing from today’s music landscape?
I think greater support for the safety of womxn to express themselves exactly as they would like is needed in the industry. Greater security is needed to protect women and their spaces. We shouldn’t be as objectified as we are and our total potential shouldn’t be ignored or compared as much as it is. I also think a lack of transparency is a big thing missing in today’s music.
Who are your biggest influences musically?
A few artists that I admire are Shygirl, Amy Winehouse, Jean Deaux, Smino, Alicia Keys, and Rico Nasty.
What other mediums, genres, or art forms make up part of your creative identity?
My creative identity also revolves around my fashion sense, the clothes I customize, the drawings I make, the tattoos I try to give my friends, and the way I want to make life as fun as possible.
How has the COVID-19 situation affected you as an individual and as an artist? We’re hearing a lot from creatives around the city about how they’re dealing with this and the variety of answers has been so interesting and inspiring.
Living and working through this time of social distancing has been pretty stressful. I was upset to see so many great shows end up postponed because I wanted to deliver on the music people were expecting. I’m still able to make it to the studio, thankfully, and put the time into re-defining my creative goals.
How is creativity helping you cope during this anxious moment?
This extra time is definitely making me a more productive artist. Making music is my favorite distraction and I’m grateful to be able to do it when I’m not working. I really think I’m getting through to new levels of my music.
Eleeza has put together a list of songs deeply meaningful to her. Listen here:
Interview edited for length & clarity by Shelby Kluver
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