HOME COOKING SHARE, the 100% indie music magazine of december 2021 dedicates me a long interview.

copyright Alain smilo

Straddling Styles, With Class

It is an understatement to say that his album “Le Monde Est Fou” charmed us! Strong in
texts and sound textures, between pop, song and musical hybridization,
it is, in a way, a beautiful alien that Isa Somparé proposes.
A warm alien to which we get attached very quickly, and which turns out to be as rich as light.

You have a rather atypical and self-taught background!
Can you tell us about it ?

I was raised in a family where there were excellent musicians, a singer, an orchestra musician.
We sang a lot! I was put on the piano at the age of 6, until I was 14/15.
I wanted to do something else, I did theater, at the Conservatoire
of Le Havre, then when I arrived in Paris, I wanted to be an actress. I spent
at the Cours Florent for a while, then I worked with a company
for 7/8 years, we played Molière, Racine, etc. Then the troupe split up
I found myself lost in the wilderness, without a network. By chance,
I came back to music. During all these years, I continued to
writing, and I met two people who liked what I was writing, who offered to
proposed me to put it in music. This was in the early days of the computer-aided music system.
I thought it was great, to be able to work alone on your music.
I bought a 4-track, then a computer and I became completely fan!
As time went by, I trained myself and worked on the computer to put my words to music.
I had also become a singer
in a jazz club, and I took bass lessons, and I worked a lot on harmony.
It took 10 years of hard work, all that.

Did you learn everything on the job, alone?

No. Plus meetings, especially with Eric Barouti, who is a sound engineer, who
who helped me to develop the first sounds.
He took me to a studio with Eric Neveu, who has done a lot of film music, so that I could learn how to work in a studio. It was a self-training
in all directions. Through him, I also met a lot of musicians. We made a first 2-titles, that I took back in my first album afterwards, by reworking them. I felt then
ready to launch myself into this first album, “Rouge à Rêve”, which
I made it alone, but well surrounded, with a lot of musicians. It had a small
critical success, and above all, I was able to meet a publisher, Plaza Mayor, who
re-released the album a year later, with a little more money.
For a first try, I thought it was not too bad (laughs).

After the first album, you also released some
singles, quite different!

In between, I released two tracks, only on the internet, a little bit lighter.
Then there was this covid episode. After 15 days of trauma,
I started to play music again.
I had some time, a few songs in the drawers, and I decided to start again on an album idea.
I wanted to do it in small committee, I wanted it to be a little electro. There is only
Leandro Aconcha on keyboards and Daniel Blanc on guitars who intervened.
I sent some demos to Leandro and gave him some indications.
He sent me back his parts, it was superb.
We could have done a piano-vocals on what he sent me as material,
it could be an idea for later (laughs). In a general way, I have to find musicians who understand me, when we agree, it gives great moments!
I give them a lot of freedom, I talk to them more by images about what I want.

What are your influences, in a general way?

I think they are in the jazz standards and in the French song.
A record that marked me when I was little was
“Le Métèque” by Georges Moustaki. I listened to it over and over. I listened
a lot to Barbara. I like to write in French, I like this language.
With “Rouge à Rêve”, we almost did a tour in Japan, what they asked in the contract
is that everything, even the interventions, are in French.
So, I think that people, even outside of France, like French, find it
super sexy, so there’s no need to try to do English that’s not as good as American or
the British.

In your creations, we still find a lot of things, from electronic to a certain
rock energy!

In electro, I listened a lot to Alex Gopher, Daft, Yuksek, Justice,
etc. I find that with the machines, one can make such a work on the sound,
it’s extraordinary. It’s interesting that this work is put at the service of the music
the music and the textures. We can be in a universe that speaks to you on the sound level,
that’s what I’m looking for when I use electronics.
Biolay too, whom I’ve followed since the beginning. Musically, there is a freedom of creation, in relation to the sounds he uses, which inspires me a lot.
All that makes a little mix, which escapes me!

Your texts are strong, but on a lighter music
music. Is it a way to give them more
impact ?

It’s on purpose! In terms of lyrics, I wanted to write about what was happening, when
you see what’s going on in the world, you could write every day.
I try to be just an observer, to give the point of view of the human being, without
judgment. I am not at all militant, in that sense. For me, music
must remain a light thing. The music must remain listenable,
not redundant in relation to the texts. I wanted it to remain accessible.
And then, I like the music a little joyful, in a general way. A
too heavy music prevents me from listening to the lyrics.

There is an obvious live dimension when listening to the
record. What will your live show be like?

I can imagine it, I’m starting to visualize it in my head. Ideally, it would be
that we are 4, with keyboard, drums, rather electronic, and then someone
who can send the sounds at the right time, even if it means
rework them. And me on vocals and bass, even though there are things on bass that I couldn’t do while singing (laughs). I see improvisation, dance moments… For the moment no dates, I’ve been concentrating on promotion, getting the word out about the record,
to have a small pool of people who might want to come and see me.
And then, at the moment it’s quite jammed, anyway.

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