Gaby Moreno touches the old soul in all of us with her warm and soulful bilingual vocals. The 30-year-old songstress officially dropped her first all-Spanish album, Postales, last week. Serving as an ode to her journey as a singer-songwriter, Gaby delivers an emotional rawness that really has corazón. We interviewed the talented artist about her cultural roots, muses, and more below!
You mentioned that Aretha Franklin and Nina Simone are some of your musical influences. What do you love most about their style?
“I love their power, conviction, and fearlessness when they sing; especially the soul in their voices. They can transmit so many different emotions.”
What inspired your album Postales? “Mainly the road. I was traveling so much last year that this sparked ideas and stories to write about. I knew I wanted to do something similar to what I had done on my previous independently released albums. Keep the vintage vibe. Keep it bluesy. I drew inspiration from a wide range of styles from 60s French pop, Spaghetti westerns, and 50s R&B/soul ballads.”
How have you grown artistically since your current album, Illustrated Songs?
“I like to be more aware and observant of everything that surrounds me, because I realize that a good story or title can be just a glance away. That being said, it's only been a little over a year since ‘Illustrated Songs’ came out, so not a whole lot has changed. I feel the growth will come from having more experiences on the road. I foresee a lot of these ahead with ‘Postales,’ since I'm tapping on a brand new territory with the Latin audience.”
We love your single, “Ave Que Emigra.” You hit the topic of immigration in a hard-hitting and empowering way. What personal experiences drew you to those lyrics?
“Ever since I was a little girl and discovered my passion for music, I knew that someday I was going to leave my country and pursue my dream abroad. I wanted to see the world from a very early age. Destiny brought me to the United States. This country has given me so many opportunities in music and I'm very thankful for that.”
How else has your Guatemalan background influenced you as an artist?
“I love to tell people in other countries where I come from. I feel very proud to say I am 100% Guatemalan and it makes me feel good that I can do something with music to represent my country and give a good image of it to the rest of the world. It's a shame people mostly hear and read in the news the bad and ugly stuff that's happening there with violence and drug wars, but the truth is Guatemala is an amazing country with so much to offer. We have very unique traditions. I have one on my new record called ‘El Sombreron,’ which is based on a centuries old folk/legend tale from Guatemala."
What do you love most about being Latina?
"I love the fact that I'm part of a culture that is so passionate, warm and lively. From hugging everybody (you know it's a latin thing!) to dancing salsa, even if you are not pro. It's something that was instilled in us when were kids. We love to be loud and have a good time!"
What do you look forward to in the future?
"Lots of music, traveling, live concerts and also some downtime to enjoy the most important things in life...family and friends!"
Listen to "Ave Que Emigra" below and let us know what you think!