Let’s take a little trip down memory lane, shall we? It’s April in the Coachella Valley. I am laying by the pool preparing for Day 2, Weekend 1. My friend, Alana, is extremely excited to see Gryffin tonight. At the time, I thought I had no idea who that was. She refreshes my memory by playing, “Tie Me Down”. A song that is popular in every Spotify playlist at the time. Her energy is contagious, and I am excited to go discover a new (to me) artist. What ensued that night, I was never expecting. To say I left Coachella in love with Gryffin’s sound, is an understatement.
While driving home at 5am, post festival depression kicking in, I was desperately trying to remember the song that resonated with me the most. And then, it came on shuffle. “Remember” by Gryffin featuring ZOHARA. I honestly have no idea why this song hit me right in my little feelies. I had no boy drama at the time, so I was existing peacefully. Maybe it was the voice that resonated with me the most. ZOHARA is a voice to be reckoned with. I am honestly shocked nobody has picked up on her sooner. However, getting her break with Gryffin is a magical start, to say the least. Her debut song, “Remember,” is a love song with an amazing tune. The lyrics tell a story of possible love fading, or maybe just two people trying to hold on. Whatever your interpretation, it’s hard not to dance to this tune. Now after listening to this bop, if you realize you just can’t get enough, you’re in luck! Gryffin debuted his album, Gravity, in which ZOHARA gave us another bop. This time with a more mellow tune. “Out Of My Mind,” goes into what we all experience when we’re super into someone. You literally can’t get them out of your mind, so you go crazy. Whether you’re thinking about their toxicity, or how amazing they are, it wont leave your head. This song taps into that emotion we are all too familiar with.
Now, while I could go on forever about how amazing her voice is, as well as these two songs, I thought I would bring you a new take. For once, instead of me rambling, I present you the artist herself. With ZOHARA emerging, we all have so many questions for her. So, I thought I would jump the gun and get her take on some of my pressing ideas.
So, without any more rambling, I give you: ZOHARA, The Interview.
When your song “Remember” fell into the hands of Gryffin, what was your initial reaction?
I was ecstatic! I knew the song was special when I wrote it three years ago and had no doubt it was going to be picked up, it was just a matter of when! Gryffin took the song to it’s next level and I’m super grateful to him!
I know you have a new song coming out soon with Gryffin as well titled ‘Out of My Mind,’ would you say the sounds are comparable to ‘Remember’? Or a completely new vibe?
I think both Remember and OOMM share many things in common – they’re both so relatable and tell such raw stories, yet they give the listener a totally different feeling. OOMM is the type of song I would listen to in the car on my way back from the beach while Remember will forever be my go to party song. I’m so grateful to have two songs on the album that showcase different aspects of my writing and my voice.
What was your first impression of LA when you moved? The East Coast vs. West Coast debate is large, so I would love to know what you think, considering you have now lived on both sides!
I have a lot to say about this so I’ll try to keep it short! Everyone who knows me well knows that I prefer NY over LA anyday. I was raised in NY and my entire family is still out there which makes LA a bit harder for me (I’m very close with my family, so I don’t like to be away from them for too long). I usually go back to NY every 2 months to refresh my mind. Reboot! I feel more inspired in NY – I love the subway because I get all my ideas there. While in LA, everyday starts to feel the same after a while and I start to miss home. BUT I have to say, the opportunities here in LA are unparalleled – which is something I am grateful for about LA…and grateful for the LA sunsets. I love the beauty of NY, it keeps me alive! I always tell people that I love NY so much because I feel like I’m part of this huge machine that never sleeps – I feel like I’m part of something and like I’m never alone because I have that commonality with everyone else walking on the street. NY makes me feel fearless. My dream is to make it big so I can move back to NY and split my time between there and LA 🙂
What has been your favorite venue or festival to play at so far, and why?
I would say Coachella was my favorite festival by far! It will always be special to me because it was a day of many firsts! It was my first time performing in front of an audience (unless you count my high school theatre days haha) and my first ever coachella! It was the most surreal weekend of my life. It’s a crazy story actually! I was only supposed to perform weekend 2 but when I went to the souncheck here in LA right before weekend 1 to prep for weekend 2, I met Gryffin for the first time and he heard me sing and told me “pack your bags, you need to perform with us tomorrow in palm springs. It’s going to be live streamed and it wouldn’t be the same without you. You got some pipes on you! You can really sing!” A few hours later I was on a bus with his entire crew to palm springs…I crashed at a friends house that was rented and then 24 hours later performed for the first time in front of 60,000 people. None of my family or friends came because of how last minute it was but I am so proud of myself because I was able to do it on my own. It is a huge accomplishment for me 🙂
What do you think you would be doing right now, if you weren’t all over performing with Gryffin?
Very good question! I have no clue haha I see myself focusing on my own music and my own artistry. Really going in 100% on who I am and showcasing that in my music.
On Instagram, you’re like a fashion icon! Where do you get inspo for your style?
Thank you! I’ve always loved fashion and am a huge believer in feeling good & special in what you wear and owning it! Having grown up in NY I got a lot of my inspiration from just seeing people walking down the street in their crazy outfits. I also get a lot of my inspo from Elsa Hosk & Emily Ratajkowski! Obsessed with them.
Lastly, can we be looking forward to a debut album sometime in the near future?
Yes!!! One of my main goals right now is to create music that gets me excited. It’s easy to write songs that are for other people (which I’ve been doing since I’ve lived here in LA for the past three years) but it’s a totally different ball game when its your feelings and your heart on the table. I want to show everyone the raw, vulnerable yet strong person I am through my music. I can’t wait to get creative and share it with the world.