Review Fix chats with SaniyÃ©, who discusses her love of the holiday season and new single, â€œBaby, Itâ€™s Still Christmas.â€
Review Fix: What inspired this track?
SaniyÃ©: Well, letâ€™s see… Some years ago I somehow put it in my mind that I either wanted to record a duet with Michael BublÃ©, or write a Christmas song for or with him. Ha! Lofty goals there. Anyway, I had the verses more or less written, and an idea for the chorus, when I invited my colleague and super talented songwriter, singer, musician (and now, â€œThe Voiceâ€ alum!) Blessing Offor to write on it with me. Not long after we wrapped up what we came up with, I flew to LA with plans to stay for a couple months to write, record, and be in the scene over there. I showed the song to producer and songwriter extraordinaire Mikal Blue, and ultimately we decided to go for it and record it. Mikal made it sonically such a warm and toasty Christmas recording, and he also gave the song itself itâ€™s finishing, magic touches.
Side note: Later that month, Mikal and I co-wrote a different holiday song with You Tube sensation Alex G, called â€œItâ€™s You That I Miss This Christmas.â€ THAT song was a â€œtop-40 bopâ€ + made it onto Disney Radio, ABC Family TV, to name a few. It was super exciting! But anyways, as for this song, â€œBaby, Itâ€™s Still Christmas,â€ I obviously couldnâ€™t get it to Michael BublÃ©, so I decided to sing it myself and release it as is. Thatâ€™s why itâ€™s in key kinda low for me, lol.
Review Fix: What do the holidays mean to you?
SaniyÃ©: The holidays feel like a magical time for me because of all the prior holidays I had as a child. Santa, reindeer, twinkly Christmas lights, decorating the tree, gingerbread cookies with milk, marshmallows and hot cocoa, cartoons on TV or a good Holiday Movie, having butterflies in your stomach the night before Christmas Day… I mean, if youâ€™re lucky, itâ€™s the most exciting time for a kid other than their birthday!
Itâ€™s also a time to wind-down, reflect on the year, spend time with family, and look forward to being in pjâ€™s alllll day and night for days on end. Though weâ€™ve been home and in pjâ€™s for most of this year, (strange times) so, will need to get creative to think of something else to look forward to this holiday :)
Review Fix: What makes this song a special one?
SaniyÃ©: I love this question. I have this weird mentality that music in general is special and not-so-special all at the same time. Itâ€™s all where you put the perspective. For example, is the song written as a Holiday Anthem, one that will soar on the billboard charts and top Mariah Careyâ€™s timeless â€œAll I Want For Christmasâ€ bopper for decades to come? No. It wasnâ€™t written in that manner, or with that intention, or goal. As I mentioned before, I had Michael Buble in mind, and I wanted to do something different. Usually we think of holiday songs as upbeat, chipper, fast-paced, high energy (at least the newer original Holiday songs by modern artists like Katy Perry, Meghan Trainor, Kelly Clarkson..) I wanted to create a modern Holiday song that had the essence of the golden oldies, the slow burners, the crooner vibe, like the old time Christmas tunes that are legendary and epic, the kind we never tire of hearing year after year. Something like â€œWhite Christmas,â€ â€œChestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire,â€ â€œHave Yourself A Merry Little Christmas,â€ or â€œIâ€™ll Be Home For Christmas.â€ Those songs are seared into our hearts, and in a good way. Like an old, cozy blanket.
Review Fix: How do you want this track to be remembered?
SaniyÃ©: I would love for this track to be remembered as a holiday version of the year 2020, as its lyrics talk about everything going wrong, despite your best efforts! (Kinda like National Lampoonâ€™s Christmas Vacation?) Like, try as you may, your holiday is not going as you planned, and feels like itâ€™s all falling apart, and nothing is under your control. Many of us have felt this way about the entire year. So, my hope is that listeners will remember this song as a â€œChristmas in 2020â€ crooner-anthem, but in a fun, and cheeky way. After a very hard year, if this song and itâ€™s lyrics can bring you a moment of joy, a smile on your face, and in reflecting on 2020 none-the-less, then Iâ€™ve done my job.
Review Fix: Whatâ€™s the best youâ€™ve ever gotten for the holidays?
SaniyÃ©: A SEGA GENESIS!!!! 16-bits of pure perfection. I still play it, and even took it to college with me. Will never forget tearing open that wrapping paper, my heart beating a million miles a minute, and seeing that magical blue â€œSEGAâ€ logo peaking back at me. One Christmas I got the Atari 2600 before that, but the Sega is my baby. My cousin got it for me, and we played for 3 weeks straight in our pjs, lol. Those memories are what makes the holidays extra special for me.
Speaking of which, I am foaming at the mouth for your new â€œThe Minds Behind The Sega Games book.â€ I literally canâ€™t wait! I want to buy the first signed copy.
Review Fix: Whatâ€™s on your musical wish list this holiday season?
SaniyÃ©: Do you mean as in what music will I be buying? Wishing for more guitars?
The more I think about the question, actually, the more Iâ€™m thinking about what I would really love… which is for everyone to put aside just 3 minutes and 59 seconds, put down their phone or devices, and just listen to â€œBaby, Itâ€™s Still Christmas.â€ Even better, if they like it, to share the song with a friend. Extra points when you listen on Christmas. Extra dextra double-dare super duper brownie points power up bonus if you record yourself listening and tag me @saniyemusic and Iâ€™ll repost to thank you! THAT, my friend, is my one musical wish this holiday.
Review Fix: Whatâ€™s next?
SaniyÃ©: I have some new music coming out in 2021! Songs called, â€œReady, Set, Goâ€ that sounds like it’s out of a Red Bull commercial, (vroom vroom! Who wants to race me?) and my video-game themed pop songs, â€œUp Up Down Downâ€ and â€œGame Over.â€ I CAN’T WAIT.
Review Fix: Anything else youâ€™d like to add?
SaniyÃ©: Iâ€™m doing a live stream on Wednesday, Dec 23, 8-9pm EST, a mini-Holiday show with trivia, giveaways, and guest artists. Come say hi! Otherwise, you can always find me on all socials as @saniyemusic or join my email list on www.letsplaysaniye.com.
Oh, and wear a mask, yaâ€™ll. Please. If yours is ugly, you can get a pretty SaniyÃ© soft cloth mask to put over it, available in the store on my website… wink wink ;)