Hits such as XYZ, When You’re Here, Carousel and more have seen Stereolizza hit the big time since then. However, Lizza assures us that she always has some What’s On time in her schedule.
How would you introduce Stereolizza to someone who has yet to hear of you?
I could say tonnes of stuff but it won’t mean a thing unless my music gets them on the hook. So, I would probably start off by playing one of our songs. If they like it, I can then tell them we opened for the Black Eyed Peas at Kyiv’s Palace of Sports, that our songs have been in Hollywood movies, TV shows and MTV – stuff like that. If it’s a guy I’m talking to, and he’s cute, I might even show him my Playboy cover!
Who were some of your influences growing up?
I wasn’t that “girly” growing up – I used to sing in various high school bands, where I was often the only girl, allowing the musical tastes of my bandmates a big influence. I often listened to Viktor Tsoi, Nirvana, Jimmy Hendrix, The Verve, Blur, Radiohead and other such legends. I also had a lot of old jazz records. Later, I became a fan of Madonna’s Confessions on the Dance Floor and Eminem’s Slim Shady. Although, I’ve never been a follower of one style or artist, I’ve always been attracted to particular songs or albums, rather than music trends or artists.
How is the band getting on in LA?
In Los Angeles, our success is comparatively modest. LA is the city of Justin Bieber, Katy Perry and thousands of other superstars after all. But, if we were to be compared with a mid-level American artist, then I’d say we’re doing pretty well. We are also represented in three European countries – Ukraine, Sweden and Poland, and for an average American band this is not easy to achieve. Also, we just signed a contract with quite a big American company, pigFACTORY, who will represent our songs worldwide, pitch them into movies, commercials, TV shows; so things are just great right now, with every indication of better to come!
Tell us more about the collaboration with the Swedish label...
The Swedish label is called Clubstream Pink, and they specialise in radio-friendly house music. They heard our music, liked it and offered us a deal. Naturally, we were very flattered because Swedish producers are currently topping American pop charts and it’s not easy to get them interested. They have already released an EP with Carousel, and remixes from Swedish and American DJs. The remixes sound really awesome – we totally dig what these guys did with our song! Also, Clubstream together with Sony Music put on a remix contest, where DJs from all over the world competed in creating the best remix to Carousel. The contest closed with 51 entries, which was fabulous. Choosing the winners was a tough call!
Tell us a little about Magic Records. You signed with them in December 2012 – how did that come about and is it a conflict of interest with Clubstream Pink?
Magic Records is a company we worked with through Ukrainian Records back in the day, and our cooperation was very successful. They wanted to sign us when they heard our new song Go Back To Your Mama and saw the music video, even after all these years. We were already recording the album ourselves and planning to release it on our own record label StereoZzilla Music, but, Magic’s offer was so enticing and their desire to work with us so strong that we signed a deal with them for three albums. There is no conflict of interest with Clubstream Pink – the Swedish label licensed just the one song from us, Carousel, and released an EP with remixes.
What is it about living in the US that you really like and maybe don’t like so much?
First of all, I would say living in Los Angeles, not the US – every region in the United States is very different, and LA, as a city especially, differs from everything else.
A totally creative atmosphere – people from all around the country and the world come here with ideas. Everyone has aspirations and work very hard to turn their dreams into reality.
I love American customer service!
There are a lot of things that go on in LA every single day – concerts, shows, exhibitions, premiers, parties, conferences, etc. There is so much to do and to see!
I love the weather! It is sunny and warm all year round, with endless beaches and a beautiful ocean.
There is high competition within the music market.
Healthcare can make you a broke. Don’t ever get injured or sick in the United States!
Lots of scams.
What things do you miss about Ukraine?
We miss our families and friends. Also, people in LA don’t talk to each other very much – they spend a lot of time driving long distances, nobody calls each other, they are just constantly texting, even close friends. This is very strange for me; I think the loss of live communication is a huge deficit in such a mega-city such as LA.
How did growing up in a newly independent Eastern Europe have an effect on you? What of those experiences have served you best in your career?
All the people in Eastern Europe, including myself, started travelling more – we became more open to the world’s modern culture.
Speaking of culture, what is your favourite book and why?
Three Comrades by Erich Maria Remarque. I read it in a heartbeat and cried my eyes out. Then there’s The Heart of a Dog by Bulgakov, because it remains true for all times.
What is on your bedside table right now?
I don’t have a bedside table!
Is there a special guy in your life at the moment..?
Yes, and this special guy has been by my side as far as I can clearly remember myself, in different capacities – as a friend, bandmate, co-writer and producer. In addition, he is now my spouse (smiles)
How did you celebrate the Christmas/New Year holiday this year?
I came to Kyiv to spend the holidays with my family. My cousins also came from Russia, so it was a lot of fun to celebrate all together because it doesn’t happen very often.
What would you like to see happen both personally and professionally in 2013?
I want to deliver as many great songs as possible; the rest will come sooner or later. It would be great to play a number of live shows in different countries in 2013 and release an album. Personally, I want my family to continue being happy and healthy, as well as get together more.
If you could redo any part of your life, would you change anything?
I don’t want to change anything! No! I don’t have any regrets!
What message do you have for your Ukrainian fans?
I would like to wish all of them, regardless of whether they like my music or don’t give a damn about who I am, love and peace. There is so much anger and greed around us, but life is so beautiful and short. Hurry to live every single second and love someone; don’t put it off ‘til tomorrow!
Stereolizza’s new track Go Back To Your Mama is out now.
Keep up to date with the band on www.stereolizza.com
Graham Phillips and Lana Nicole