Behind the Music:Brazilian Girls

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Usually when people see an ad for Brazilian Girls they expect a good time, but no one expects some of the most fun music they’ve ever heard. Containing only one female member (not Brazilian), the name can be a tad misleading but it’s all forgotten when the cheerful beat of “Good Time” starts up, or the dreamy keyboard flourishes beginning “Lazy Lover” take hold.

This Grammy nominated band sets moods with flawless songwriting.

Vocalist Sabina Sciubba brings her artistic presence to the forefront while instrumentalists Didi Gutman (keyboards), Aaron Johnston (drums), and Jesse Murphy (bass) create unique atmospheres. The songs are outside of the box, and after a few listens one’s head starts involuntarily bobbing and their feet start tapping away.

The New York group’s sound is equal parts Friday night party, chilled out lounge, and breezy beach afternoon. Their range of influences from bossa nova, to reggae, to pop, makes for a flavorful journey on record and on stage with Sciubba showcasing her progressive fashion and front-woman moves to full effect.

Having collaborated with legends such as David Byrne of the Talking Heads and Angélique Kidjo, Brazilian Girls are established as a top up-and-coming act. The promise of new material later this year is keeping fans excited and the music scene poised.

Tropicult had the opportunity to ask front woman Sciubba a few questions about their future and their career so far…

You’ve collaborated with a few great artists throughout the years, how have those collaborations influenced your music as far as songwriting and recording style?

Everything influences everything. It’s like spending time with someone and you unconsciously take on some of their expressions. I suppose the challenge is to make our influences our own and integrate them into one’s vocabulary. It’s the same for music.

Is there anyone you’d still love to collaborate with?

I’d love to collaborate with Arvo Pärt [famous Estonian composer].

What are some of your influences that wouldn’t be obvious to the everyday fan, that one might not expect?

Johannes Brahms, Abdullah Ibrahim, Carlos Guastavino, Marilyn Monroe.

There has been a connection to fashion that this band has become somewhat known for: how do you feel fashion ties with your music, artistically? And are there other arts that you may be interested in connecting with your music?

Fashion has always been an additional means of expression for me, especially on stage.
A sort of visual game.

I love making images, as in videos or animations. I made a series of Mini-films, where I tried to create abstract worlds that aren’t self explanatory, to leave things up to the viewer’s imagination.

Did you try any new methods when songwriting or recording the new material? What sets the newer sound apart from the previous releases?

Actually, we do try different things, but it mostly comes back to the same approach being the most productive for us. Mainly Didi brings in some sort of base which I find a melody and lyrics for and Jesse and Aaron create the ballsy grooves on. Some songs came about differently, but 80 percent are written that way. 

What are your plans for the future of the group?

You know how it is, tell God about your plans…

Most of all, we want to release this record in a way that is noticed by those who love us already and hopefully new fans we can pick up on the way. It’s quite a challenge today, so we’re taking it step by step in order not to just throw a record out that goes unnoticed.

If you want to catch Brazilian Girls do their thing live, go check them out tomorrow at the House of Creatives