By Lauren Engberg--- Staff Writer, South/Southeast
Sara Bareilles has been a household name for quite a few years now. After huge success with songs “Love Song” and “King of Anything,” it’s safe to say Sara Bareilles is back to singing her way into our hearts yet again. With a new EP out and a documentary called Trace of Sun, Bareilles has given fans a whole new look into what life has been like over the past couple of years. In the interview, we get to talking about the new EP, her role in the Record Store Day event, memories from past shows, and talks about who she’d love to go on the road with.
The Audio Booth | Sara Bareilles
Can you tell us who you are, where you're from?
SB: I'm Sara Bareilles and I live in Los Angeles. I am from Eureka, California originally.
Can you tell us a super random fact about yourself?
SB: I make a clown horn noise. That's one of my secret talents.
When did you first start singing?
SB: I started when I was probably 5 or 6. We always sang in my household. My parents had a piano so I started playing around the same time and sort of fell in love with it.
Did you always just play piano or did you play any other instruments as well?
I played a tiny bit of guitar growing up, but really more so recently. But yeah, it mostly just piano for me.
How would you describe your sound to someone just getting into your music?
SB: It's piano based. Oh gosh, that's hard. I guess Pop-Soul. I mean I guess it's just pop music. It's so hard to describe yourself, it should be easier!
What is your writing process like?
SB: I definitely write about experiences that I have in my life and I'm pretty autobiographical writer that way. I usually start music first, and then lyrics going after that.
Could you tell us a little about the new EP coming out soon?
SB: It comes out on the 22nd, and it's called "Once Upon Another Time". It's five songs, they're produced by Ben Folds and was recorded in Nashville late last summer. It's sort of a thank you/love letter to my fans. I wanted to give them something that would tie them over before the next record comes out. I'm really proud of it and really excited for it to come out.
What's it like working with Ben Folds?
SB: Ben is amazing. He is really loving, very encouraging, and so hysterically funny. We had a great time. We kind of pulled out validating my ideas. We used a lot of stuff that I did just at home by myself, and used a lot of those recordings. That felt really validating. Ben is a musical hero of mine and I really really look up to him a lot. I learned a lot from this process.
You've done a few collabs with people such as Ingrid Michaelson and One Republic, do you enjoy doing collaborations a lot?
SB: I do. I like working with other artists because usually they are going to approach the music from a different way than you do. So, you get to kind of get into someone else's brain for a little while. You always can learn something from another artist and I've worked with some I totally look up to. So, it's the really fun part of the job.
Who would be your dream collab be with?
SB: I would love to do something with Cee Lo Green, or Chris Martin from Coldplay, or all of Coldplay. I would happily do something with all of Coldplay. Tegan and Sara, I would love to do something with them. It's kind of all over the board. There's a lot of people I want to work with.
What made you decide to participate in Record Store Day?
SB: I'm a really big fan and supporter of independent music stories. I just think they are a cultural institution that we have to preserve. It sort of represents a whole era, that I don't want to see that go away. I was happy to contribute. It was really fun. We stood on a counter at the record store and signed albums and sang them a song. It was really fun.
What was your first record you ever bought?
SB: The single of Paul Simon called "You Can Call Me Out."
What is your favorite venue to play at?
SB: I like a lot of them for different reasons. This last year we played in Central Park for the first time. That was really amazing. I loved the set up and I love being outdoors. So that's one of my favorites.
Anything memorable happened on a tour that you could tell us about?
SB: Oh, there's lots of things that are memorable. I'm trying to think. Well, we went out in New York one time, and we had a little too much fun and my bass player almost didn't make it to the flight. We had an early flight to Boston, and we couldn't find him. He was up in his hotel room, he was just sleeping. But he didn't show up, we eventually got him though. It all worked out.
You performed at this years Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony what was that like?
SB: That was amazing. That was amazing, amazing. The whole celebration was so cool. It wasn't about competition at all. It was just about looking at all these incredible musicians careers and learning from them and celebrating music as a whole. It was really really cool. I got to meet a handful of people, one of them being Carole King, who is one of my heroes. So, it was a night I will never ever forget.
Being at things like that, do you ever get starstruck?
SB: Oh yeah, big time. I saw Carole King, and I was like, I felt very small. All I could do was muster up the courage to tell her and introduce myself. She was so sweet.
I saw that you released a documentary called A Trace of Sun, could you tell us about that?
SB: A Trace of Sun is a documentary of volunteer work in Japan after the tsunami. We went with an organization called All Hands Volunteer, and it was amazing. I took away what I really wanted to gain from that experience. Most of all, I have a really deep love and respect for Japan and the people of Japan. It was incredible to see them go through all of that, but I also wanted to encourage people to just go volunteer with any organization. I think it's a very valuable experience and I took away so much from that. I felt like, selfishly, I got a lot out of going and doing service. I thought that was really really cool.
What was the best advice ever given to you?
SB: My friend Matt, he told me basically, "You can't polish a turd." It's not a nice thing, but basically it's about looking at your songs. A good song is a good song, if you need more time to get great songs together, take more time. Don't rush into things. Don't sacrifice the quality of your work, if you're feeling pressure to do something quickly.
Are there any key essential items to bring on tour with you?
SB: I really don't want leave my house without my music. Like my iPod or my iPad stocked with all my music.
Is there any tour in the works for this new EP coming out?
SB: I'm not sure. There isn't really anything solidified right now, but I have also learned to never say never. We might do something in the fall, get out there for a little while. I'm not totally sure about that, I really want to focus on writing the record and recording it.
Who would you like to go on tour with maybe in the future?
SB: Again, I would go out with Coldplay. I would pay them to take me on tour. I would watch the show every night. That's who I would love to tour with.
Finally, is there anything else you want to tell the fans?
SB: I just want to give so much love and gratitude to the fans. I have been so overwhelmed and amazed by the outpouring support and love that I feel on a daily basis. It's absolutely incredible. I'm really really grateful for all the support over the years. Thank you to my darling fans.
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