French pop folk singer and songwriter Céline Schmink talks about her life after « Paris-Memphis », working with The Oengus Projekt dream-pop band and her new album Héroïnescence to be released in December 2016.
Hi Céline ! How are you?
I’m fine, thanks. I’m still divided between my family, my pregnancy (the baby is due in February) and my new album to be released in December 2016. I’m a little tired now because I can’t go on dancing, I can’t walk too much because of my baby-bump but waiting for a new baby is a great time. We are still promoting my album Paris-Memphis on radio shows, magazines and bloggers’ interviews and I’m now working with Eric Miller on my next LP. I also have many partnerships with beauty and fashion brands for my blog named Leblogdeceline.
Let’s talk about Paris-Memphis.
Paris-Memphis was my first studio LP. This LP is comprised of 13 classic tracks and the total
playing time is nearly 50 minuts. I think it’s my own vision of a tribute to road trip and american bluesy music. The LP is partly folk and partly indie rock with sometimes a bluesy touch. It also addresses itself to fans of romantic bluesy ballads and South music including two timeless classic folksongs I play with the autoharp: Lil’Liza Jane and Aura Lee (popularized by Presley as Love me tender). I remain best known for my romance ballads as Under a blue moon and Les yeux froids in duet with californian singer Chris’M but I also sing very rock’n’roll songs as Bêtes d’orage and californian rock as the track named Isadora Duncan. All the tracks are original and wholly my own. All songs talk about memories and of course trips and roads. I think Paris-Memphis celebrates the power of music to bring people together and focus on our common humanity.
What inspired the title Graceland?
Graceland, there is a double meaning in it. I remember a road trip to Memphis, Tennessee with friends when I was younger, so it’s about indolent youth, and also I talk about this state of mind that increase your fulfillment when you’re really in peace and joy, a kind of « Grace Land », a paradise for the mind, a Revenge trip on life and adversity…
Let’s talk about your duet Les yeux froids.
Les yeux froids is one of my favorite songs . I love it because I can sin git very softly with a little voice, effortless and listeners are very positive about it. was noticed. A record company wanted me to buy it from me to adapt it rather than doing a cover that would have involved all my creator’s rights . A famous singer was approached to sing with a girl that they wanted to debut. But as the song goes on many radio stations and is liked I refused. That’s my work and I took on its production and then promotion… I think it’s too easy to arrive to harvest the fruit of work that has been proven… Anyway, Les yeux froids, sang with Californian artist Chris’M, is a love song talking about two ex lovers that meet in a sad event and remember their own story. It takes place in Montmartre, Paris, France and there’s only one Spanish guitar and our voices.
And what about electro title Bêtes d’orage
That’s a sexy funny hot song ! It’s about two lover shaving a date on a boat when thunderstorm is coming. It’s all about seduction, bodies, lovers’ games. The music vi dis starring great french actor Jean Masini. He’s very funny too, he’s a real artist.
In Bayou Julep Live music video, you seem to be a good improved artist as a great auto harpist and folk singer. Did you enjoy the recording ?
That’s the last song I’ve recorded just before my pregnancy. I didn’t know that I was going to have a baby, I felt so tired because I was really sick the day before. But the day we recorded Bayou Julep I was very motivated. It was a Live recording in a garden under the sun. That was a big challenge because it’s not easy to record a track outside in a grove. Lyrics and music are mine. I love to write with my auto harp. My husband bought it for me in Albuquerque ! It’s a great present.
Your next album, Héroïnescence, takes a different approach than the last one, Paris-Memphis. Why ?
The theme is really different. It’s about Passion and Heros. The CD will be very fierce and intense ! So I need to get a big sound, something very electro and dynamic. It will hold the audience spellbound.
You’ll be touring for this record?
Yes. I will apply for grants for this tour to be able to pay musicians and also two stage dancers.
How do you go about your creative process?
You know, writing songs is natural to me. It’s a deep process coming from the inside. I need serenity, holidays, nice places and the alchemy is coming.
Where do you find inspiration?
I found my inspiration in my past, people I like, people I read about… My favorite themes are travels, love and indolent youth…
You’re in Paris now, a very different place from Memphis, Tennessee ?
Yes. You know I’m a parisian woman. I was born there. Paris is not very impressive for me. I miss Tennessee ! Memphis and Nashville are my favourite towns. When I’m there I think about Greats as Elvis or Jeff Buckley.
Lil’wild ones. This album was inspired by you reading about Jack Kerouac?
Yes but not only Kerouac. It’s about Colorado, countryside, mountains, autumn and colors. And it’s still about road trips ! Road trips are real
Where will we find you in the near future ?
You will find me in my music Studio in Champagne during all the year and then in Paris for a great launch of « Héroïnescence ». It will be a big event, a big deal with many people and promotion. And then I will tour in France and England. And, of course, you will find my work with The Oengus Projekt Band on streaming top sites
All the best luck with your new record Céline !