Updated: Jun 3
by Dr Renée Ralph, Co-Founder, The Brilliant Foundation
PERTH, Western Australia - WOOHOO! #WAAPA artist and #Floreat musician Rachael Coltrona recently launched her music video clip "Complicated" earlier this week. In her voice, Rachael shares her journey how she wrote the lyrics, sang and created the music video "Complicated."
Please support this fabulous young individual carving her career in the music industry. Watch her video below:
I loved your cover of ‘You Don’t Own Me’ that you sang with a band in English and Italian? How long did it take you to record that song? What was the driver or reason for you to do that?
It took quite a few sessions to get my cover of You Don’t Own Me. The first session was mostly about getting the Band in (a local Perth Band called the Memphis Rockers) and lay down the track of Piano, Bass, Guitar, Drums and Saxophone, which we recorded in one session.
We then did a full take of all the instruments and vocals except synths and saxophone, which were added in later, to get the tempo and placement of it.
We then added in the saxophone on top, and the synths in a following session. Once we had the instrumentals, I went back four more times to perfect the vocals as well as mix the track, picking the best tracks from each instrumental and vocal take.
You Don’t Own Me is a classic prelude song of female empowerment. I’d seen the Memphis Rockers do a cover of it, and I loved how they performed it.
Having been covered by a lot of artists before, I wanted to put my own creative spin on the track and intertwine two languages, as well as pay homage to my Italian heritage. Leslie Gore had done two versions in both languages, so I decided to combine them in my own way.
Was it the catalyst for you to create Complicated? What is Complicated about?
The catalyst came from a personal experience with someone who was flirting with the idea of keeping me around while not really committing to anything. Kind of going nowhere fast, but I was not wanting to accept it. Relationships are complicated after all!
Complicated is about a song about being in a situationship (a romantic or sexual relationship that is not considered to be formal or established) and about releasing and maintaining control of your situation, before completely falling for someone who you know is not right for you.
How was the process? Is it a single? An Album? An original?
Complicated is my first debut single of my original music, the first of many in the pipeline!
The process of writing it took a long time. I started writing some chords and lyrics based on what I had been journalling into notes on my phone.
Once I had solid chords and lyrics, I brought it to my vocal teacher and we workshopped it over quite a few lessons, until we were happy with it. From there we created a demo of piano and vocals, again that took quite a few 3 hour sessions to get all the vocal takes and harmonies right.
Once we had edited and put it together, I took the demo to Jeremy Smith at Lab Six. I compiled some reference tracks of what I wanted the track to sound like, and started to add in instruments. We went through a lot of different sounds on a Rolland Juno, added in bass, guitar and claps and that took 5-6 sessions.
From there we decided to take things out to make it less ‘complicated’ and went into mixing and mastering the track. This full process took over 18 months from the song being written to releasing the final version.
How long did you take to do the video clip? Did you choose the other artist in the film? How did it come about?
The music video took just over 3 months, including planning, shooting, and editing to get to the final result. I contacted Jess Wharehinga to work with her and her team and started brainstorming what creative vision I had.
For the song we came up with a story line for the video, a lot which was arose from available locations, and then organised shoot locations, props, costume and talent.
I’m very lucky to have a lot of friends who work in the arts industry so I was able to cast them as the starring and extra roles. We did the shooting over 2 days with 4 different locations.
What do you hope to achieve?
To continue writing music that people enjoy and hopefully go on to tour and do live headline shows of my own with a band and creative team.
Why Singing? How does it make you feel?
I just love the way I’m able to express myself as a person and creatively, I feel a such a strong emotional connection when I am singing with myself and the people listening. It’s an art form. I’ve put in a lot of time and effort into because its something I love, I don’t know what I would do if I couldn’t sing!
Is it tough to break into the arts industry or entertainment market?
I do think it’s an enormous challenge, and you really need to believe in yourself, your creative work and your performance skills but like anything, if you work hard enough, have a supportive network and put investment into your career (whatever that looks like).
I believe you can make it. It is a massive industry, filled with so many opportunities if you are willing and open to give things a go and work smart about marketing and utilise your skill set for others or create your own work. I also believe you get to decide what success looks like for you.
What are your plans for the future?
I’ve got more single release in the pipeline, and I’m currently writing an *EP which I’m excitedly working on, to have a whole new body of work that is cohesive. I would love to tour which is thrilling. I want to continue to perform both live and go on recording new tracks.
*An EP stands for Extended Play and is a musical recording that contains more tracks than a single but fewer than an album.
Did you know that Hugh Jackman is a WAAPA graduate just like Rachael Coltrona? Hugh Jackman was offered a role on the popular soap opera Neighbours but turned it down to attend the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA) of Edith Cowan University in Perth, Western Australia, from which he graduated in 1994.
The Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA) has been home to the likes of iconic Aussie performers including Hugh Jackman, Tim Minchin, Lisa McCune, Meg Mac, and Eddie Perfect.
The new Aussie Icon is Rachael Coltrona from Perth, Western Australia.
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