Anna Aliena

Anna Aliena Numbergirl artwork

69, 69, let’s do it: How Anna Aliena invented “Numbergirl”

Today I’m a bit nostalgic because it’s been a long time since I released my very first EP Silly Little Boys in 2011! One of the five songs seems sillier than the others because it contains one special line: 69, 69, just do it! Well, I must admit that the rest of the “Numbergirl” lyrics is only slightly more sophisticated than recent German schlager. For one reason: I, Anna Aliena, am the author! 😉

Let me be your number girl, at school I was so good at maths. Nonsense! I hated school, I was extremely lazy and at the end of grade 10 I was so bad at maths and physics I almost had to repeat the school year. Luckily I knew the number 69 even in those days, otherwise it might not have found its way into my song.

Numbergirl in the making: “Just f***ck!”

Anna Aliena in the making of Numbergirl

Credits: Anna Aliena / Go!Diva Records

If you expected a dirty tale from my youth, I must disappoint you, though. The true story behind “69, 69, let’s do it” is just a harmless episode from a holiday with no triple X in it. In June 2011 I visited Budva in Montenegro with my ex. Quite a picturesque place by the Adriatic Sea: stone houses in the old town, loads of tourists, even more Russians and several newly constructed buildings which do not fit the stone houses.

Right in the middle of this beauuuutiful scenery there was a beach bar playing techno music. Not just beats – the track also had an intelligent verse. “Just f***ck”, a guy steadily repeated and my ex was SOOOO happy about it. He was grinning like a sil… uh’m charming little boy and then he advised me to make music like that.

Only a couple of days after the holiday we split, but I decided to commemorate him. Thus, I wrote down the words: 69, 69, just do it. My ex and I stayed good friends for a while and of course he felt flattered because of my masterstroke.

Why I blurred Enrico Ludwig’s vocals

I never liked the idea to have my own voice on the 69 part. For that reason I asked Enrico Ludwig to record the line for me. He was a young man with musical and poetic ambitions in those days, so it wasn’t necessary to ask him twice. Yet after the recording session, I wasn’t quite convinced of the outcome which sounded too effeminate in my ears.

I actually wanted a masculine voice and therefore Alex from the studio had to blur Enrico till the original got unrecognizable. Maybe my own vocals would have been similar after editing, but who knows … Here’s the music and some of my paintings!

Serenada

Serenada EP And Video Out Now

Recently I’ve talked about it in several articles, but yesterday it finally happened: My first classical EP Serenada was released. The album contains seven Croatian songs by Josip Hatze. Apparently I’m the only German singer to arrange and sing this kind of repertoire. What an honour!

Serenada

Cover of “Serenada”

In March I gave you a first impression of my work: the video of the last track “Suzi”. Last Saturday I filmed another video of the title song “Serenada”. Do you remember under which circumstances I had written the ballad “Tvoje Plave Oči”? In August of last year I provided you with some insights of a night of unfulfilled longing at the Lakes of Plitvice. The lyrics of “Serenada” perfectly fit the emotional state I was captured in. So I made up my mind to show you this episode of my life in the video. To be honest, I didn’t wear such an elegant velvet dress at my hotel room. I also left out the tears which are just as meaningless as the hormones producing the feeling of being in love. In the end only music remains.

Yes, I’m really delighted about the new EP Serenada! It’s my masterpiece, the first record to show you the true abilities of my voice. I’m not sure if I will ever go back to ‘alien pop’. For now I simply know that I will make a video of “Tvoje Plave Oči” in June. Maybe I will be inspired once more in Croatia even though I’m so through with songs about unrequited love! By the way, in the meantime I recorded an English and a French version of that song. The French version “Tes Yeux Bleus” turned out to be my favourite! Whatever happens after that: I will definitely focus more an the classical type of music like modern opera.

Josip Hatze Suzi

Suzi From Josip Hatze: New Music Video

My first classical music video is out now! “Suzi”, the last song from my forthcoming Serenada EP, was written by the Croatian composer Josip Hatze (1879 – 1959). It’s a song dedicated to a tear based on the lyrics from Milan Begovic. Last summer I started to discover Croatian language and music for very personal reasons. These personal reasons do not count any more and I’m really grateful to have widened my cultural horizon. Soon I will sing more repertoire from Croatia. I’ve also been planning concerts with the brilliant pianist Zeljko Vlahovic, my dear friend from Zagreb.

“Suzi” is the saddest song from the record, the ending of a story about unrequited love. For that reason I also made a gloomy video in black and white. Here’s the text for those who understand Croatian:

Tiho suzu oko spušta.
Gorka suza k’zemlji pada.
Oh, padaj, padaj, gorka suzo,
Oj, meleme moga jada!
Što bih da mi tebe nije?
Ja bih jadan brzo sveo.
Oh, padaj suzo, žali nade,
Žali blago nesuđeno!

Anna Aliena Serenada

Serenada: Seven Croatian songs

The release date of the Serenada album has finally been set: It’s on April 15th, 2016. My first classical EP contains seven chosen Croatian songs by Josip Hatze:

1. Ljubav
2. Mio Si Mi (originally “Mila Si Mi”)
3. Cvati, Cvati, Ružice
4. Večernje Zvono
5. Serenada
6. Kiša Pada
7. Suzi

Yesterday I had a photo shooting with Christina Katz who had also taken the promotion pictures for The Muse. I wore one of my elegant dresses from Daniel Rabe who is my favourite Berlin designer. My pink era is definitely over! Now it’s time for class and quality. I hope you’ll also like the outcome of my latest photo session.

In order to give you a first impression of my forthcoming record, I made a short promotion trailer containing snippets of all the seven tracks. I truly love singing in Croatian! Today my Serbian teacher Nena announced to provide me with more Croatian repertoire next week. Is this the end of ‘alien pop’? Only time will tell, but one thing is for sure: Times have changed and I’m not the same musician I used to be five or six years ago. If I’m meant to continue my musical career in Croatian, I see no reason to protest! 😉

My first video from the Serenada album is going to be released on March 13th: I decided to sing “Suzi” on it, a song dedicated to a tear. I also have plans to film a “Serenada” video which will be out on April 15th – on the day of the digital release.

Anna Aliena The Muse

What Reviewers Say About The Muse

Four months ago, on October 31st, 2015, my latest EP The Muse was released. Today I would like to give you an overview of the reviews I’ve received for the record so far. Here we go:

“Die Lieder dieser EP sind  sehr ausdrucksstark.  Das gilt sowohl textlich als auch für die Art und Weise wie Anna Aliena die Songs stimmlich zum Besten gibt. Ich würde das Ganze als eine angenehme Mischung zwischen Pop und Oper bezeichnen. Gut wird das Ganze durch den Einsatz von Orchesterinstrumenten untermalt. Einfach toll geworden.” (Roman Golub, BadBlack Unicorn)

“Tremendous job – I wouldn’t have thought this music could be something I’d end up appreciating as much as I have today…and I’d personally like to thank Anna for that, because she’s solely responsible. Again…the music on The Muse is never out of line, never offensive, but also never the star; it would be impossible to standout or shine next to a singer like Anna Aliena – she has a charming, charismatic voice you couldn’t possibly take your attention away from.” (SleepingBagStudios)

“Anna Aliena is a talented singer who has found the right balance between her classically trained voice and a beautiful gothic-reverie sound.” (Side-Line Music Magazine)

“‘The Muse’ is een mooie cd, met een mooie spanning tussen de meer zonnige en zwaarmoedige nummers. De orgelklanken klinken meer bombastisch, maar je vraagt je af of het niet nog wat orkestraler had gemogen. Met deze worp neemt Anna Aliena alleszins wat afstand van de soms wat kitscherige synthpop die haar eerder werk kenmerkte, en het resultaat mag er zijn.” (Xavier Kruth, DarkEntries)

“Die Geschichte von Liebe in der Ferne erzählt „Deine Blauen Augen“ beziehungsweise auf kroatisch „Tvoje plave oci“. Diese Ballade rührt zu Tränen, ist so voller Sehnsucht und Leidenschaft. Selten kam Annas Opernstimme besser zur Geltung als in diesem Stück. Sie hat auch kroatisch gelernt und singt ganze Textpassagen in Kroatisch. Nicht zuletzt steigerte dies ihre Beliebtheit in diesem Kulturkreis gerade enorm! Man darf also gespannt sein, auf welche unentdeckten Pfade es die Künstlerin nach der Veröffentlichung noch verschlägt!” (Maximilian Nitzschke-Stockmann, Back Again)

“Mostly though, you will you will marvel at the power and artistry she is capable of in so many styles of music. Clearly this is not everybody’s cup of tea, but if you are able to throw all your genres out the window and completely rethink your musical priorities, Aliena’s distinct ability to transport you to places you’ve never even dreamed about, is in the air, on “The Muse”. It’s a cosmic smattering of all things Anna Aliena!” (Jamsphere.com)

“Where Anna Aliena’s music really stands out is in her blending of otherworldly sounds and tones with the age old familiarity of musical traditions that have proved to stand the test of time. As a result, this is music that should be a real thrill for any fans of current classical crossover, as well as providing some interesting listening for anyone wanting to broaden the genre palette that they might usually go to.” (Crossradar.com)

“Digitale la struttura, la voce è in purezza quella di un soprano vaudevilliano: la fiaba si tinge di rosso sangue, le lacrime sono cristalli che escono dagli occhi di una ballerina che non ama più il soldatino di piombo, forse disillusa, per questo ancor più bella del passato.” (Nicola Tenani, Sounds Behind The Corner)

 

Anna Aliena in her new music video

Serenada Gets Ready

More than three weeks have past since my last article, but I’m still alive. I’ve just come home from Planet Earth Studios where I recorded another two songs for my classical record Serenada. As I had mentioned before, it’s a collection of songs from the Croatian composer Josip Hatze. Thus, the entire record is sung in Croatian which is a beautiful language in my opinion.

Originally Serenada was meant to contain five songs, but in the meantime I also discovered “Mila Si Mi” (I changed it to “Mio Si Mi” to refer to a man) and “Kiša Pada”. Both songs fit my story of unhappy love to be revealed on the record. Pretty thoroughly did I choose the tracks and compiled them in the correct order to develop the story. If you have listened to music from Croatia before, you might have noticed that it tends to be very emotional. By the way, longing and unrequited love is also a popular topic in Croatian rock music.

However, let’s stick to my classical record Serenada now. A few days ago I shot the music video for “Suzi”, a song dedicated to a tear. It’s a very gloomy little film in black and white to correspond to the lyrics of “Suzi”, the last song on the album. The video will be out in February or March. As soon as I know the release date, I will tell you more. So take care!

Happy New Year – Plans For 2016

2015 is almost over. I hope it was a good year for you despite the difficult political situation. For me the past year has brought a lot of musical and personal changes. In 2014 I definitely had more gigs than this year, but after all I decided to focus more on quality venues than being on stage as often as possible.

During the first half of 2015 I suffered from a slight lack of creativity. Some song drafts remained unfinished and unpublished because I simply didn’t consider them as good enough to be thrown out on the market. Due to surprising inspiration during my summer holidays (please read The Story Behind Tvoje Plave Oči), I suddenly had a strong urge to complete my EP The Muse differently than expected. I started to learn a new language, got rid of the pink wig connected with the Swinging Berlin record and said goodbye to a number of false friends.

After the making of The Muse I felt particularly attracted to the classical songs from the Croatian composer Josip Hatze. Thus, I started to arrange five tracks to be released on my first classical EP Serenada (learn more on Preview Of A Classical Record) next spring. In the meantime I discovered two additional songs which shall also appear on that record. In January I will film my first classical music video called “Suzi” (To A Tear). By the way, I have a brand-new quality camera to shoot overwhelming static and moving pictures!

In summer 2016 it’s fixed to go to Croatia to produce a breathtaking Tvoje Plave Oči video. I’ve already written a new first verse in Croatian (eventually I’m able to do it myself) and translated the song into English and French. The three new versions will be out on July 1st, 2016. As usual, I may also compose a series of new songs on which I will experiment with lyrics in different languages. Which language do you like most in connection with my voice? Before wishing you all the best for next year, I’m asking you to answer another poll:

HAPPY NEW YEAR! FROHES NEUES JAHR! SRETNA NOVA GODINA! BONNE ANNÉE!