Strawberry Spotlight with Dear Baby Deer
Lady Audio: Hi everyone and welcome to the Strawberry Spotlight Radio Show. I am Clara of Maheekats, also known as Lady Audio and I will be your host. Our guest this week is Gianluca of Dear Baby Deer Gianluca welcome to the show how are you today?
Gianluca: I’m very very fine thank you for having me.
Lady Audio: My first question is always What attracted you to the realm of music?
Gianluca: I grew up in the 80s… the mid-to-late eighties and the very tacky form of Hard Rock that was en vougue back then. So Van Halen Motley Crue and things like that. As a kid and I saw that I thought oh God I really want to play guitar and so I started.
Lady Audio: Cool. So who are all the current members of the band and what do they play?
Gianluca: Dear Baby Deer is basically just me and Lilia. Lilia is the fiancé of one of my best friends. We’re both from Italy. Both from the same place. She spends more time in Italy than anything else but she goes sometimes to Venezuela because of her family. And I at the moment spend a lot of time in the UK because of my PhD studies. But I’ve lived in 12 different countries in the last 18 years, so I’ve moved around a lot and it’s basically just us. We do it all by ourselves. We play all the instruments and the recordings. We write the songs, of course, and do the cover art. We book the tours, everything. We have some help on the technical side when it comes to mastering and refining the production from a couple of friends. They have a little home studio up in the mountains in central Italy. Like a gothic hamlet, so we go there and it’s like a fairytale place and we polish the music that we make.
Lady Audio: Nice! So how did Dear Baby Deer get started?
Gianluca: I started when I was living in Finland so about 3 or 4 years ago. And, you see in Finland, even if you have cities or small towns, they are sort of in the middle of the forest. So there’s a lot of green space and forests and trees and of course you have animals that roam around the house. In Winter especially, you have foxes and deer and what not, and I kept seeing them. And once the name just came to my mind. I had been in music previously but I had quit a long time ago about 15 years before 2000 because it wasn’t working back then. And it was a tiny Italian band. We had a good contract with Polygram, did some concerts but somehow things didn’t work so after a while. About late 2013 I started writing songs again and then I came to know Lilia through my friend and we decided we could start something. So we recorded our first single which is “Gone” and just to see how things could go. We liked it so much that when we finished recording we were making plans for three albums and stuff.
Lady Audio: Wow! So you mention that you record all of your own music how do you do that? Do you both get together because sometimes you guys aren’t together.
Gianluca: Sometimes we’re not in the same place. Basically, I am the more flexible of the two and I do most of the traveling. For the first two EPs I came up with most of the songs and the songs are already made. The music comes always first. Putting the lyrics on it is always the last part. For the first 5 or 6 songs I left that to Lilia because I really hate my own voice and I didn’t want to sing. S he doesn’t want to sing either but you know somebody had to do it! She’s also by the way a very good solo artist. She has her own project which is under her name and she does this stuff that’s more in the style of Grimes or Lykke Li if you’re familiar with the names.
Lady Audio: Okay. Yes.
Gianluca: Sort of electronic female-ish things like Bjork used do. So now we get together much more and even though the majority of the songs still come originally from me, they’re never really complete once we sit down together and rearrange them and put all the keyboards and vocals and the guitars in place. By the way the very next single, which is coming out tomorrow, is the first song that will be entirely written by Lilia so that’s kind of a special one for us.
Lady Audio: Oh wow! What’s the name of it that one?
Gianluca: Changing Clouds. It’s been ready for a while but we had three new singles that we released 10 days apart from each other starting with the first one which came out on March 10th. The second one came out on March 20th and now the last one is going to come out tomorrow. And then we’ll have another single around April or May and then we we are recording a full album with about 10 tracks.
Lady Audio: Cool cool. So now I want to ask you some questions about your music. And it was difficult for me to choose which two for the show because I have to choose only two. But anyway, I really like this song named “You Don’t Know” and I wanted to ask what’s the story behind the song?
Gianluca: The lyrics I think are about somebody who doesn’t like hipsters. He doesn’t like the looks of hipsters, doesn’t like the approach to life or music that hipsters seem to have. It’s a very poppy song. We don’t really do a lot of them. We usually tend to fall down into a super slow BPM and super atmospheric things. We did occasional more rocky things. There’s a song Tryst which is quite energetic which are both on the same mini album which is called Tryst. But yeah that song is probably the poppiest we’ve ever done.
Lady Audio: Another song I really like is called “Everybody Lies As They Think of Heaven.” What is that song about?
Gianluca: That song is about people going about life lying to themselves. I write most of the lyrics nowadays and you can see from the covers on our SoundCloud or from the links you have. I took the photo for that song in a cemetery in West London. There’s a part of that Cemetery that is only for children. It’s dedicated to people who died at a very young age. It’s a little bit of a reflection on how fleeting life can be. Not a very happy thing. Well, the song is sort of not too sad.
Lady Audio: And another song I really like is called Gone, and I just wanted the audience to check it out because I’m not going to have a chance to play it on the show but if you visit Dear Baby Deer Bandcamp then you’ll find the song Gone and that’s another song I really like. What is the story behind that song?
Gianluca: Thank you. Lilia will love you for that because it’s also her favorite. As I said before it is the very first one that we ever recorded as an experiment. W e were actually trying to record another song but we had it on the shelf for a while because it wasn’t coming out right. And so that came about in the studio where we were. That is about breakups and relationships and losing somebody you really care about.
Lady Audio: I see okay. And there’s a very artistic video for the song End of the Rope. Will you please talk about the making of that video?
Gianluca: The making of the video. The girl which is in the video End of the Rope is the same girl that is on the cover of the end of the Rope single and Gone. I took the picture years back. So the picture for Gone is the same girl but way back in the middle of the 2000s. It’s the same girl who was a friend of mine at the time when End of the Rope came out. I had a little app on my phone which takes videos in the 1930s sort of lofi grainy style, where the video of the footage seems like there are a lot of fuzzy spots and lines in between. And so I wanted to try it and play with that. So we spent a couple of hours, a half a day, on the balcony at her place in Italy. We shot most of the video parts at night and then we gave the video to Lilia’s fiancé, my friend who works in video editing, and he did the rest of it with the shape of myself and Lilia overlapped with the image of the girl.
Lady Audio: I see. All right. Cool. And you mention that you have a new song coming out. What is the name of that song once more?
Gianluca: The new song comes out tomorrow. It’s Changing Clouds. It contains a sample from a video. There’s a movie that Nicole Kidman made and I think it’s called Stalker. So there’s a famous monologue which Nicole Kidman talks about life and her life is in pieces and divorce and children and what not. And we sort of stole 45 seconds of that and put the sample in the song. It’s quite nice.
Lady Audio: Cool. I look forward to hearing it.
Gianluca: It’s coming out tomorrow. It will be on SoundCloud dot-com slash Dear Baby Deer and the Dear Baby Deer Bandcamp. In a week it will appear also on Spotify and iTunes like all the rest of our songs.
Lady Audio: Okay and now it’s time for a scenario. Are you ready?
Gianluca: Yeah sure.
Lady Audio: Okay. It’s late in the afternoon and the shadows are long. You’re standing in the kitchen of your home. It’s one of those moments where you find yourself in a moment of silence as you gaze out of the window. As you are enjoying this special moment, a musical thought suddenly comes to mind. What is the first instrument you pick up to capture the thought?
Lady Audio: A cello. Why a cello?
Gianluca: You described a perfect setting I don’t know it’s just an automatic association if there’s a sunset and the shadows are about to stretch out and I’m looking out the window. That’s most definitely a cello. It just fits for some reason.
Lady Audio: Yeah that’s cool. And last but not least what is your favorite flower?
Gianluca: I’ll have to find the English name because I know it in a couple of languages but I wouldn’t be able to tell you right at the moment. Am I allowed to do a quick search?
Lady Audio: Sure go ahead.
Gianluca: Bird of paradise flower.
Lady Audio: Ah! The bird of paradise flower… that’s a lovely flower.
Gianluca: So the botanical name that you get an Italian, that I’m just learning now, comes from the guy who discovered it. He named the species. But in English, I have to admit it’s much cooler. Bird of paradise. Wow! It’s a great name for a great flower.
Lady Audio: What is the name in Italian?
Gianluca: Strelitzia because the planet was named after someone who had the last name of Strelitz I guess.
Lady Audio: Alright great! And where can people go to listen to and to purchase your music ?
Gianluca: Thank you for asking that. So it’s dearbabydeer.bandcamp.com or simply looking for Dear Baby Deer on iTunes. And if you just want to stream it, you can go on SoundCloud and it’s the same likewise look for Dear Baby Deer.
Lady Audio: Alright. Is there anything else that you would like to add for the audience?
Gianluca: In regards to the music or life in general?
Lady Audio: Whatever you would like to say.
Gianluca: Yeah. Please be kind animals. Adopt a pet, adopt an animal if you can. And make sure you don’t give up ever on anything.
Lady Audio: Great, great advice. Thank you so much for joining me today Gianluca.
Gianluca: Thank you for having us. Thank you very much.