Review Fix chats with Ariella’s Ariella McManus, who discusses the band’s origin, goals and new single, Terrified.
With elegant vocals by the charismatic Ariella McManus, a singer with emotional depth and a songwriter rich with breadth, she eloquently combines stunning melodies with infectious grooves to create a catchy, immersive sound. Teamed with guitar maestro, Nicolaas Kraster, a talented wunderkind from Fredonia, NY that’s been compared to Ottmar Liebert, Paco de Lucía and Pat Metheny, the pair effortlessly craft an engaging path to the spiritual promised land.
Review Fix: How did you get involved in music?
Ariella McManus: I got involved in music by constantly singing to the point where it was annoying my friends. I can’t blame them. Constant singing can be a bit much. From there, I just kept saying yes to singing for people when they asked.
Review Fix: What’s your creative process like?
McManus: My creative process is sneaky. I hate to “work” so I usually end up singing something I like when I’m doing the dishes or in the shower. I especially like to sing when I’m blow drying my hair so it’s loud, no one can hear it except me. This way I can trick myself into doing it and it feels more natural.
Review Fix: What inspires you?
McManus: My inspiration comes from lots of places. Sometimes from musically stirred emotions, or occasionally situations that have occurred in my life. Some of the time, I’ll write in my head when Nic is playing guitar around the house, it’s so lovely I don’t like to sing on top of it out loud so I’ll just sing mentally and not distract him. If it was memorable enough I’ll sing it to him later after I write it down.
Review Fix: What does music mean to you?
McManus: Music means growth. Music is such a mysterious and God-like thing. I try to listen to it, follow it and play with it but I’m still absolutely terrified of it. Music is a great power. One that I try to remain blissfully unaware of, but get glimpses into if I’m awake enough. It is healing and encouraging. Music lives and breathes. I respect it.
Review Fix: How would you describe your sound to someone who has never heard you?
McManus: Powerful voice, Sultry guitar. Stories of love, fear and perseverance.
Review Fix: How are your live shows different from your studio work?
McManus: Studio songs are usually filled out with other instruments and I’m standing still in a booth trying to hit every note perfectly. Live shows I jump, move and dance around. I don’t hit every note perfectly and I’m more engaged with performing the song’s story.
Review Fix: What inspired your latest single, “Terrified”?
McManus: The inspiration behind Terrified was writing and sharing the fears and feelings of doubt and insecurity in a long term relationship. Wondering if being together is still what both parties really want is something we have gone through many times over, and I’m sure we’re not alone. So we wrote a song about it.
Review Fix: What are your goals for the rest of 2020/2021?
McManus: Our goals for the next year are recording, expanding our fan base, finishing our album we’ve been working on, and releasing a single every month. We are hoping to travel and tour again but we are just taking that one day at a time.
Review Fix: What’s next?
McManus: Next is Oct 23rd and 24th, we are performing for The Van Wezel Cabaret by the Bay in our home town of Sarasota, FL. Continuing to stream weekly for our fans on Facebook every Monday at 2p Eastern, and then come the holidays which we intend to spend with our beautiful family.