Edition #11 – Zia Cora answers 7 questions

by | Mar 10, 2022

1. Why are you a musician?

Music gives us a way to relate to and express the full range of the human experience. There are so many things that only music can express. Music can cast spells over a room that transport people to alternate realities. It can ease our loneliness, soothe grief, encourage reflection, and inspire hope. It can make us feel part of something bigger or help us celebrate our own uniqueness.

2. Who are your musical inspirations?

I have always loved singer-songwriters, rich storytellers, and melodic music of all kinds. Originally it was blues, soul, funk, and pop. Lately I’ve gotten a lot more into organic house and electronic producers like The Human Experience, ODESZA, and El Buho.

3. What is your practice routine?

When I was younger, I would push myself to practice regularly until my technique was strong. Now I let music come to me and focus on the set and setting where I’ll thrive. I’ve discovered that certain environments make me much more creative – places like Hawaii or redwood forests or by the ocean, where I’m surrounded by beauty and nature and ease and abundance. Warm humid places like Hawaii are great for your physical voice; I find I have a wider range of expression and vocal control there.

4. Why did you make this song?

After I wrote the song, I shared it with my partner Aza Raskin, who is a designer and AI expert, and he kept saying he couldn’t get it out of his head. He left for a surfing trip and two days later, he had made an entire 2-minute music video made entirely from brand new AI techniques, with zero drawing or graphic design tools involved, simply by typing in phrases like “clocks underwater in the style of Salvador Dali”. The results were so moving that we decided to share the song and the video with the world. We wanted to spark a global conversation on what this new technology would mean for the world as it relates to creativity, expression, and society – when anyone in their living room will have a god-like power to inspire or manipulate.

5. What were the biggest obstacles in making this song? How did you overcome?

This single was written in less than an hour, at 4am during a sleepless night under the redwoods of California. Honestly, the biggest obstacle has been that the song has felt very vulnerable to share because it was about a really hard time in my life. But the thing I love about great songs is that they feel relatable to everyone; folks have reached out to tell me about their grief with cancer, their medicine journeys, and how challenging the last two years have been for the world. The song is about feeling dissociated and lonely and disoriented in the face of a dark, challenging world, and I think many folks can relate to that in different ways.

6. Who is featured on the album?

Just me (Zia Cora), although Aza Raskin is the artist who created the music video.

7. Where may we find you online?