“If you would’ve asked me that question 30 years ago, I’d tell you music is hopeless and the world will be forced to consume Madonna and synth-pop forever.”
Check out the interview with Daniel Goldstein and Sara Umansky exclusively on Skilly Magazine Online.
Skilly: How were you able to start your journey in the entertainment business? Where did this all start?
Daniel: I’ve always been fascinated with recorded music. Sara and I had already met and have been great friends. We were going through a rough patch together and then I said, “We should go Sparklehorse, do a lo-fi album, just for the heck of it.” So we wrote the songs in about a month, recorded it, and it was released in April 2016.
Sara: I never actually thought about writing songs or making an album, even though I’ve tried composing when I was younger. Then I met Daniel and we found it interesting to make an album together.
What are some of the creative ways you use to promote your music?
Sara: We weren’t really being creative with promotion. We just sent out messages to influential people in the industry. Mostly people we admire.
What is the greatest challenge you face in today’s entertainment business? How do you overcome them?
Daniel: Two things come to mind: plagiarism, which happens all the time in every department of the entertainment business and the other thing that occurs specifically in music. I fear that modern popular music has almost ceased to be intricate.
How is the music scene like in your hometown? What do you like about it and what don’t you like?
Daniel: It’s interesting. There’s not too much of a music scene. That’s not to say there aren’t any musicians or bands. There aren’t too many places to perform here, so everyone heads towards the big city to get a gig.
Sara: But we’ve got a great conservatory, lots of great classical and jazz going on in there which is fantastic because we cannot afford to neglect these music genres.
Where do you think the future of music is going to be? How do you feel artists can be more a part of it?
Daniel: If you would’ve asked me that question 30 years ago, I’d tell you music is hopeless and the world will be forced to consume Madonna and synth-pop forever. But nowadays? I honestly cannot tell you how the music scene would look next year, not to mention the next decade.
What advice can you give to other upcoming artists and musicians trying to achieve success?
Daniel: My advice is stay true to what you love. Doing what is opposed to your nature will make you hate your creation and yourself. If your compositions don’t have a mainstream appeal, yes it’ll make your life hard. Sometimes unbearable. It’s better than lying to yourself.
What inspires you to write your next song?
Daniel: Musically I feel rhythms, I feel chord progressions. It’s a deep, primitive urge over which I’ve no control initially. It’s all very instinctive, flows out very naturally. I don’t write in a 7/4 time signature to sound smart, I do it because I feel it.
Sara: I played a smaller part in composing this album, but when I do it’s mostly unrelated things that pop in my head. I don’t contribute lyrics though.”
What are the steps you take to make a song?
Daniel: The songs usually start with chord progressions and sometimes they come with the rhythms, and sometimes not. But the thing is my compositions are written in sections which are then bound together to one song. And that process might take five hours or four months.
What do you think makes a great song?
Daniel: Meaningful, communicative yet contemplative lyrics. The listener doesn’t have to understand it all, but he’s got to somewhat connect with it. It mustn’t be cliché, it has to come from the heart, but processed through the brain. Use your grammar wisely. There are so many lyrical options, you mustn’t go for the obvious. Be original.
Sara: I believe that a great song becomes “great” when it touches the hearts of people. When it’s not “cheap” lyrically. And beautiful harmony and rhythms are just as important. Gershwin’s “An American in Paris” for example has tons of energy and fantastic harmony.
Where can we connect with you? Can you give us your social media links and where we can contact you?
Our album is available for purchase in both physical and digital format on Bandcamp.