Amanda Zelina (also known as Red of THE COPPERTONE), a talented blues rock artist from King City, Ontario, contacted me to let you all know about her comeback from 2-year hiatus and her newest work, an exciting blues rock EP called “The Bakery”. “I made a lot of changes for the integrity of my art. Changes that took time; which included leaving my former label and starting back up from scratch. One woman, one step at a time”, she commented. I asked this memorable, mysterious singer and songwriter a couple of questions to find out a bit more about her art and herself. Sadly, due to a family emergency, we had to cut the interview in 40%. Here’s what I managed to squeeze from her. Scroll down to read my interrupted interview with Amanda.
Hi Amanda! Thanks so much for reaching out! How are you? How’s King City’s doing his fine Spring? :)
I’m doing great thank you. King City is wonderful.
It looks like a really cozy place to live. Can you tell us more about its community and the town itself? How is living in King City different from other places you have been?
Well, let me first say that I actually live in Burbank California now. I am visiting family where I grew up in King at the moment. King City is an oasis nestled in the countryside. My parents live on a dirt road, they have some gorgeous land. Things are quiet here. Very peaceful. In the stillness comes a sense of wonder. Growing up with nothing to do but explore and use my imagination really sparked my creativity and how I approach life these days as an adult. It’s always a pleasure to come back and soak in the fresh country air.
Do you think you would ever want to settle up there?
Up in Cali? Right now it’s where my heart is.
Oh no, I was thinking about the lovely and quiet little town we’re talkin’ here! :)
Haha no. I love King but it’s not my dream location. Time will tell. I love the country and I feel at home when I am there. I could see myself living someplace like Asheville North Carolina.
What’s up there in Asheville?
I was there briefly writing with an amazing musician Greg Cartwright (Reining Sound). I was just overwhelmed by the beauty and the hospitality. There is a gorgeous charm over there that I still think about.
Amanda, admit it. You were the only musician in King, right? :)
Hahaha there are probably a few more!
Alright then. I must say, your vocals and the compositions itself on this new record are quite impressive. These tunes can really blow you away. Why did you have a 2 years break between your last activity and “The Bakery”?
Thanks. I needed the two years to really fine tune what I wanted in my life and out of my music. I am a firm believer in listening to yourself and your intuition. I needed the space to learn and create.
Was it worth the wait?
:) In one of your interviews you stated that your music has surprisingly a lot of darkness. How do you see this new record in terms of the atmosphere?
This new record is me emerging out of the darkness. It’s different from any other record in the sense that it’s triumphant. It talks about moving through the darkness and building back up again. I see life in a new way these days and that is reflected in the new record.
What came behind that darkness?
A true sense of self. A real unwavering strength as a woman.
Ok, so where do you draw inspiration from for the themes and ideas in your lyrics this time?
Well The Bakery was from what I was going through at the time, leaving the label, fighting for my freedom, dealing with the industry. Now that I am at peace with all of that things are shifting into a more playful place. I’m enjoying writing lighter songs, writing love songs. Writing lyrics from a place of happiness is an incredible experience. For the longest time I felt in order to be taken seriously as an artist I had to always be in a struggle or place of darkness. I now know whatever I create translates authentically. Life is hard, there is no two ways around that. These days I am enjoying the happiness and allowing it to come through in my music.
The official press release says that you actually wrote about 200 new songs! How’s that even possible?? Was it a joke? :)
No joke. I am very disciplined with writing. I also wasn’t performing live so it gave me sanity. I have a large catalogue of music from the 12 years I’ve been writing professionally. The thing to remember here is that I don’t filter my writing. Meaning just because THE COPPERTONE is blues rock, doesn’t mean I only write blues rock songs. I like to keep my creativity flowing and one way I can do that is by not limiting my writing. Of those 200 songs probably 65 of them were THE COPPERTONE material. I have a lot of other projects in the works at the moment. Those two years gave me the opportunity to explore new things and my inspiration flourished.
This interview was interrupted due to unforeseen circumstances. Amanda was no longer available for interviews. Bummer!
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