Marie Joly had a lot to share about life lessons, humanity and love. Offering Recordings first lady’s music is described as ‘strongly perfumed with spiritual and conscious messages’ What grabbed me was the album title…I have much to be grateful for. GRATITUDE. Simply titled.
Boddhi Satva declared Marie Joly as ‘one to watch’ 3 years ago during our interview. She was still in production mode when he first visited Toronto and I listened to minor releases until I saw a quick blurb online a few weeks ago that her album debuted on Traxsource at #16! What an entrance! She’s not a stranger to the underground scene though…..this is just one of many projects she’s been working on…we Skyped- me in Canada and she in France! Awesome convo….
Me: Marie-Joly thanks so much for this interview, I can’t believe you’ve finally released some beautiful material after a few years under the radar. Congratulations on your success. Your single and titled album ‘Gratitude’ debuted at #16 on the Traxsource ‘House’ charts.
Me: How would you describe your music?
She: I would describe my music as harmonic, it goes deep, it could be House….if people dance to it maybe……its hard to classify the genre. It’s healing music. I know I want to move people, emotionally and spiritually, like Boddhi!
She: I would call it ‘Spirited House-it’s a more natural sound’ She says ‘I try to be harmonic and soothe people, if I can make people dance that’s ideal’ I’m so proud of this album because even though they are unknown or locally known from (France/Scotland) they are flexible yet experienced artists. “I call it New Age; Funky”
Me: Why music? Tell us a little about yourself? How did you get into making music?
She: My favourite part…I played music from a young age. I was a classically trained musician, I studied ballet, I read music, I played the piano.
Instead of rigid music study she spent time studying improvisation (thinking outside the box). She had to practice Chopin but jazzed it up during practice. Her teacher wanted her to learn the Classics but she continued her musical studies in Jazz.
Me: You’re a multi-talented person…. How long did it take to finalize this specific project?
She: From the time Boddhi suggested I get working on an album to when I handed the album in, it was about 3 years…. so naturally some stuff on the album is older. This album is a good synthesis of my production history. Some old and some new. I needed to create pieces that completed a story.
Me: What does/how do you roll-out your creative process?
She: ‘My mind is always creating, I walk in nature, I hear melodies. I’m walking in the street (I hear melodies, I have lots of inspirations.) I can hear what’s happening in my head, I even hear sounds with silence. You can process sounds and sort them out, it’s kinda like musical meditation’.
Me: What comes first, writing or studio time? Are you a House producer?
She: I produce first, I lay down backing vocals first-it’s a transformative process. It’s spontaneous and in the moment. I go back to adjust and press record. It’s like I’m telling a story. I write about how I feel when I’m looking at me. I’m not disassociating my personality but I look at it. (Be sure to have a listen to ‘Lovin’ You’.) It’s one of those examples. I’m grateful for simple things in life, nature, music, friends and my life. I’m an avid vinyl collector too!”
Me: What’s your favorite part of the creative process? What’s your least favourite?
She: My favourite part is pulling together sound files, ideas and beats and sounds I’ve saved so many sound files so I can work fast and not waste any time while the creativity is showing up….My least favorite is bittersweet; working with the likes of Atjazz and Black Coffee the pressure is on to create solid output (superior sound.) So humbly she says ‘you know these guys are tenured, you learn from them, it’s humbling-they show you production tricks and knowledge and you’re completely blown away….When I think too much in the studio I lose the thought and vibe so I like to be spontaneous. With that spontaneity you find that some producers are highly spiritual and they are definitely running on a very ‘Deep’ vibration when they make and play music.’
Me: So are you are a producer? (I hate job titles and labels but I had to ask.)
She: I don’t take myself purely as a songwriter or producer. I speak from emotion-I write about emotion. I improvise like Oggun. (Known for his protective nature and his ability to spark ingenuity.)I layer tracks and sounds. It could be spontaneous or it could be here and now.
Me: For this album, did you work on any tracks with Boddhi?
She: NO (he’s 100 supportive from the sidelines) I’ve got a few very close friends that call often to see how I’m doing and they are always checking in to see how smooth the production process is going. But how I met Boddhi was ‘synchronicity’. She ties this in because it really was a chance meeting.
I was making music but I didn’t know I could get into distribution. I ran into a producer for NHS Scotland and was commissioned to make a soundtrack for a documentary on Lenox Castle-a hospital. The filmmaker was asked me to do this for NHS National Health Scotland. (Sounds familiar with Jellybean’s story huh?) I worked on it and eventually handed in a tape.’ It’s then that she realized music (her music) was a business! Fast forward to Winter Music Conference WMC 2007 she did plenty of promo in Miami right around the time he (Boddhi) released his first single on the Soul Heaven compilation. He encouraged her to work on something……this produced ‘Lovin U.’ (Oh la la…qu’est ce qui ce pass?) Boddhi played it EVERYWHERE-it was re-released and remixed by Louie Vega and it did VERY WELL! Boddhi recommended she work on an EP and album. Voila, here’s the album!
During her formative musical years she moved to Scotland and resided there for some time-and it is in Scotland she says she ‘listened to music differently.’ She discovered their ‘Underground’ and slowly built her recording studio and also where she discovered turntables!
Me: Who would you like to mention from the Scottish House Underground or off the beaten path?
She: Aqua Bassino, Vashti Bunyan (brilliant folk singer/songwriter), Craig Smith & The Revenge (check ’em out.)
Me: Who are your musical influences? Who inspires you musically? ‘Nick Holder I respect his musical craft.’ A lot of the times though she says, ‘It’s not just the music that makes me enjoy their music-it’s more than that’ Her favourites, [Boddhi] with the ancestral movement/sound. She really likes J Dilla’s production he helps explore her approach to music production. Other favourites: 4 Hero, Bilal, Vikter Duplaix. She lists so many more….
Me: Who would you love to work with?
She: Osunlade, Moodyman are on my list.
Me: What next for Marie Joly and Offering Recordings?
Marie Joly: Album #2 is 50% done but you never know…there are no collaborations. I’ll work on it myself but if something presents itself I could end up working with anyone.
Her parting words…..Marie Joly <<<(she’s on Twitter) believes that ‘Even though we all try to live with our art, we all have the power and capacity to not only focus on the business side of music. ‘It feels empty that way.’ She promises that this album has more artists with more experience and you do feel it [the ethereal sounds] on Gratitude. You can purchase the album on iTunes.