Exclusive Interview with Singer-Songwriter Lorine Chia
Like many immigrants that come to the states, Lorine Chia was chasing a dream she’d had since childhood. Unlike most, the Cameroonian-native took the trials and tribulations of settling into Los Angeles and her new country and turned it into an introspective collection of songs. As it is the first official album she’s produced on her own, Sweet Noise also happens to be a moment of independence and inner strength.
I got the chance to talk to her about who made her realize that music is what she wanted to pursue as a career, how long it took for Sweet Noise to come together, what she’s nerding out about and so much more. Keep reading to see what she had to say!
Tell me a little bit about how you first got into making and performing music.
I used to watch my dad play the guitar and sing all the time. Then, he made an album and I was inspired. I then taught myself how to play the guitar and started writing my own songs. 11 years later, I’m here with 3 albums and a bunch of EPs out constantly following my music dreams.
Was there a specific moment or person that made you realize that music is what you wanted to pursue professionally?
Yes. That person was Kanye West. Listening to his old interviews and seeing what he went through to be heard by the world was amazing. From not having a place to stay, to people trying to limit his gifts, to him defying every odd. Then, I went to college for a semester in 2011 and realized it wasn’t for me. I found myself street performing instead of going to class. Then, I dropped out and made my first album. I knew I’d never turn back.
You’re originally from Cameroon and moved to LA. Was it solely to pursue music or were there other reasons that prompted your move?
Yes. I’ve been in America for 20 years now. Maryland was my first stop. At 19, I moved out and started traveling. I went to New York and Atlanta for a bit. Then I realized I hated snow and humidity and wanted to pursue music. LA was the perfect place to reside so I came here.
I’m always genuinely curious about what artists want to convey with their music. If you had to describe the music you create without using genre names, how would you describe it?
I would describe it as what it is: sweet noise. Soul sounds. Healing music.
Going off of that, who are some of your musical influences?
Coldplay, NERD, Santigold, Kanye, MIA, Corinne Bailey Rae, Amy Winehouse, Death Cab For Cutie, Band Of Horses and a few more.
Let’s talk about your new album, Sweet Noise. What was the recording process like for this project? How long did it take for this to come together from start to finish?
It took 3 years to put this album together. It came out pretty sweet. Some of the tracks I recorded and produced from home. Some in random studios. Over time, I gathered the records and took them over to Truth Studios. We had a few sessions where I invited musicians to come in and fill in the records and Nick started to mix from there. We literally got it done 4 days before the release.
The latest single from the project is “Needed”. What inspired this song?
Self love. Lots and lots of self love. It’s a song about loving me and needing me.
What was the songwriting process like for this song specifically?
I heard the beat and the words and melodies just started flowing for real. It was magical.
Something I’ve always been curious with songwriting is how topics come to mind. Did you know what you wanted to write about going into the song session that birthed “Needed” or did it just come about organically once you were in the session?
It came organically. Hearing the instrumental brought it out. That’s usually how I write songs. Sounds inspire the lyrics.
Was there any major changes made to “Needed” once you got into the recording studio, whether it be in the lyrics or something sonically?
No, just mixing it really.
You are still relatively new to the music game. What are some music industry-related goals or benchmarks that you’re aiming to reach in the next couple of years?
A world tour would be incredible. I just wanna see what’s all out there and share my music with everyone.
Lastly, we’re called Talk Nerdy With Us because we all have an inner nerd so what is something that you’re currently nerding out about?
Anime. Desperately waiting for The 7 Deadly Sins season 3 to come out. Also, I’m wondering why in the world they haven’t finished Deadman Wonderland. The manga was soooo good.
Make sure you follow Lorine on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.