Review Fix chats with singer Gillian Nicola about her new single “Oh Marie” and her upcoming EP, which is set for an April 15 release.
Review Fix: What inspired this new single?
Gillian Nicola: “Oh Marie” was inspired by a couple of different things – most obviously, it’s the story of someone who thinks they have their life worked out, but then realizes it wasn’t what they were looking for. It’s about getting in too deep with something and what happens when you remove yourself from that situation. As much as it is definitely a story about someone who makes a hard choice, it’s also about admiring the strength it took to change their situation.
Review Fix: How would you describe your sound to someone who’s never heard you?
Nicola: I’m a folk/rock songwriter, but I have a hard time sticking to that label. Sometimes I’m more alt-country, sometimes I’m more indie folk… the titles are somewhat silly to me. You’d probably like my music if you like songwriters like Kathleen Edwards, Ryan Adams, or Neko Case. I often write songs that have atmospheric aspects to them, but I like to have somewhat darker or contrasting aspects to the lead guitar parts. I am a classically trained singer, so I like to keep my vocals interesting and varied.
Review Fix: What musicians do you feel have influenced the most?
Nicola: When I was about 14, I discovered Janis Joplin – she was one of the first musicians who I just dove into their catalogue and went nuts about. That said, I definitely don’t sing her style of music. As a songwriter, I love Kathleen Edwards, Jenn Grant, Bahamas – all those Canadiana, indie folk kind artists. Canada has so much amazing music coming out of it these days that I never have to look too far to be inspired.
Review Fix: Give me your favorite song on your phone or iPod… that you’re scared to admit.
Nicola: Honestly, I don’t actually have anything that strange on my phone. I will be a Backstreet Boys fan till the day I die though.
Review Fix: What’s next?
Nicola: My full EP – No Place to Call will be coming out on April 15. I’m so excited. This has been such a work in progress for so long that it seems kind of strange that it’s going to be out soon, but I can’t wait for it to be out of my hands! I’m going to play a whole ton of shows this summer, and I’m really excited for that! I really want to sort out a tour for this summer, so hopefully that will happen too.