rBeatz Exclusive Interview with Brika
The pop world is heading towards soul and a more authentic vibe. Brika exemplifies just that. She recently released her music video from her soulful original, Don’t Want Your Love. The visuals match the emotions evoked in the single. From the colors, to the simplicity of the arrangement, Brika carries the composition with her smoky vocals and illusive nature. In an industry with a lot of competition, a voice that can carry an song becomes a vital asset, and Brika has just that.
The way in which her voice pulls back (see the 11 second mark in the music video) gives me goosebumps, and I’ve listened to the song over 10 times today. She combines multiple genres in her vocal arrangement, from indie to jazz from soul to R&B. This combination of genres is the future (and a bit of the present) of pop music.
The song was released from the production house in Miami, Art House Records, the label who signed the talented vocalist back in 2013. Since then, she’s been recording and working on her sound, amassing over 12 million streams on Spotify. She has gained airplay on stations like KCRW and Annie Mac’s BBC Radio 1 program.
We had the pleasure of interviewing the young singer/songwriter below. Watch the music video, then press play on the Soundcloud embed and read the entire Brika interview to gain the FULL Brika experience.
Where does the name Brika come from?
I know most musicians usually have a really clever reason for their artist name but to be honest mine came from not being able to use Briana since it sounded similar to Rihanna.
What instruments did you play when you were younger?
I taught myself to play piano well enough to write songs. I always feel strange saying I “play” considering the amount of actual talent there is out there for the instrument alone. I am confident in just saying I am fully a vocalist even if I do have an understanding of a couple instruments.
Where are you from and how has that shaped the musician you are today?
I am from Miami. To be honest, I don’t think the city itself has done anything to shape me sonically since it has a predominantly heavy Latin influence but certainly my upbringing has by being exposed to so many different cultures.
Are there instruments that you currently wish you COULD play?
Acoustic guitar. That is the instrument that makes me melt.
Do you have a favorite instrument you like to sing along to?
100% guitar. It inspires me the most. Whenever I hear a great acoustic guitar player, it gives me the chills.
What was your first big accomplishment in the music industry?
The first time a song of mine reached over 1 million streams.
What was your favorite music video moment when creating Don’t Want Your Love?
My favorite moment in making the Don’t Want Your Love music video was being able to jump on the tables of this random Cuban pizza place at 2 A.M. shamelessly barefoot, in pantyhose, with my director Alejandro Reyes while strangers just stared at me extremely confused eating dinner. Not many people can say they’ve done that.
What festival are you looking forward to the most this year?
I didn’t attend this year, but I wish I had gone to Coachella. They always have great alternative acts like Bon Iver.
How was playing with Kygo?
He is by far one of the nicest people I have come across. We had a great time.
What do you like to do when you’re simply hanging out – aside from music?
Hard to say. When I am not listening intently to music, in the studio, or writing, I hang out with my friend groups at different spots around Miami.
Who are your musical influences?
I never know how to really answer this but I love Norah Jones, Billie Holiday, Bon Iver, and Sade.
Do you have a favorite mic you use?
When recording in Art House’s studio I love using Neumann mostly the U 87. I am spoiled at this point so now I feel weird using others.
Do you do any vocal warm-ups? If so, which ones?
Not really. If I’m in LA or Miami I’ll just sing viciously in my car before getting in the studio. Rarely I’ll use this proper vocal warm up exercise playlist I found on Spotify ages ago.
What is your biggest accomplishments to date?
Singing at the X Games in front of millions and playing at Bona Nit Festival in Barcelona.
What are some of your favorite venues to play and why?
I haven’t done enough shows around the world to feel sure of what my favorite is yet, but thus far my favorite venue experiences have been in NYC. People are truly passionate about live music there.
What is your favorite color?
Black. Like my soul. Just kidding, but my favorite color is black.
What food do you eat the most?
Tuna Tartares, Ceviche, and Chocolate Chip cookies.
Do you have a favorite in-studio snack?
Yes, getting Tuna Tartares on Uber eats.
What is your favorite social media platform and why?
Instagram because it’s short and sweet. You post one picture and say a little something.
What is next for Brika?
The next things planned ahead are the EPs I’m going to be releasing this year, covers, and a potential small tour the beginning of 2018.