In conversation with Giolí & Assia
Giolí & Assia, a power duo from Italy, multi-instrumentalist, singers, songwriters, record label owners, DJs, and live performers. A complete package of talent and grace. You debuted in 2017 with "Stay Closer", " Endless", "Paradise to Share" to name a few. In April 2019 you initiated #DiesisLive a series of performances in breathtaking locations. Going back in time, who introduced you to music and how did you meet each other?
We both started to have interest in music from an early age. (Giolì) I started to play the piano when I was 8 years old, but my parents used to let me listen to different kinds of music. We were listening to Queen, Pink Floyd, and U2, and at the same time I was improving my classical piano skills, so I was surrounded by different influences. Later on I started to play the guitar, and became part of a rock band. This experience helped me a lot, both on the production side and to perform live on stage. (Assia) Even if I started to play the guitar late, when I was in high school, I’ve always wanted to play instruments or have vocal lessons. I loved music so much, and was interested to know more. My uncle was passionate about rock, so I discovered some bands thanks to him, like MUSE, NIrvana, Led Zeppelin. From that moment music always captivated me.
Your single " Bebe” came out on Ultra Music earlier this year, a sensational piece sung in Spanish. How would you describe the creative process of the project and why did you decide to sing in this language for the first time?
As Italians, we receive a lot of influences from Latin Music, as it’s very popular in Italy. Our languages are also pretty similar, so we both understand Spanish. Assia speaks it fluently and this gave us the opportunity to have fun and write lyrics in a different language. We love Spanish so much, because it can be very romantic and sensual, the vibes that we wanted to create around our song “Bebe”. On the other hand our goal was also to connect more to our Latin American fans, giving them a song they could sing loud and relate to.
How would you describe your art in general and what vision do you want to share?
We always like to associate sounds to visual elements, especially coming from nature, and to give people a different perception of the music. Like a real journey, a trip, where you can feel the music like a real entity not just something to listen to, but like something you can really feel and perceive.
You play many instruments and both have your own musical essence, how do you work together in terms of initiating new musical ideas?
There are different ways to start a new song. It can be through an acoustic process, jamming at the piano or with the guitar, or we can start the production first, adding melodies and lyrics at the end. Rollercoaster is an example of the acoustic process, we were playing the piano and that’s how the melodies came out, while “Inside Your Head” lyrics came after the production.
What does your studio look like at the moment? Are you planning on adding any new pieces of equipment?
We recently bought our first house and we built our new studio in it! Still work in progress, but we love it already! We are planning to add new pieces, a brand new electric drum is coming soon, a couple of more handpans, some pictures, and we still have to choose the acoustic panels and new monitors for the sound system!
What are some of the most highlighting moments you've had in your career?
This North American Tour was definitely one of our biggest highlights we had so far in our career. We're so grateful, selling out so many venues in different cities it's something that definitely gave us so much energy! Meeting all the people we love again and spending a moment together dancing and singing is a magical and special moment.
In moments of artist block, what do you do?
We didn’t experience proper artist block, in which you want to produce but nothing comes out. We’ve experienced a dark period, mostly in the first phase of covid, where we were not stimulated enough to produce new music. These periods can happen, because music is a passion first, and sometimes you never know when the inspiration comes! but when it becomes a job, then it can be stressful. Luckily we are two, so there’s always one of us that has the right energy to give it to the other.
What are some of your main inspirations (not only artists)?
Nature for sure. When you find yourself in the middle of nowhere, just alone, watching the sea, maybe on a sunny day, or even a cloudy rainy day, or just sitting in your garden watching the panorama, definitely something will pop up in your mind.
What are some of your favorite tracks?
We have a lot of favorite tracks, but just to name 2 at the moment Happier than ever from Billie Eilish and Santè by Stromae.
What are you looking forward to on your upcoming tour?
We can't really wait to play our upcoming album live! It will be different than the live we are doing now, it'll be the next level.
What does balance mean to you?
Everything. Balance is our mantra, and definitely the word that should rule the world. We see it a lot in our relationship and we stick with that.
Your most recent single ‘Quedate’ saw you collaborate with Pabllo Vittar, how was this experience for you? How do you choose who to collaborate with?
We love Pabllo Vittar, a real icon! One day we noticed we were mentioned in one of her stories and we were so surprised to see she was listening to our music! We started chatting and after a few days we proposed to her to work on one of our songs together so we sent Quedate and she loved it! She was loving the lyrics and the production and we were so happy to make this happen! It's always beautiful when different artists put their energy together to send a message with music. That's what we like when we think about collaborating with artists. Join the force to do good music and send good messages to the people who listen to us.