Photos / Louis Browne / WMA
Story / Augusta Gail
Let’s be honest – we could all use some good vibes in our lives right now. And rising artist Gigi Rowe is definitely here to give us a little positivity – and some super catchy music – in this time of turmoil. Rowe is a Miami-based artist, whose sound – and personality – is bursting with bright colors and a vibrant message. We chatted via email, and even miles apart communicating through computer screens, it was obvious that Rowe the sort of gal you want to be friends with. Her answers are authentic, funny, and prove that she’s not just a talented musician – she’s also a super rad human. We chatted about her song and video “Run the Night” (which was featured in Just Dance 2017!), her newest song “24/7 Dreamers,” her views on social media, and why hot pink is the best color of all.
What got you started/interested in music? How did your musical career begin?
It all began at the age of five in a black velvet dress, with a white collar and red rose, wearing bold lipstick (my Mom’s) to match the vividness of the rose. I was given a solo (“I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus”) to sing in front of 500 people. I was barely tall enough to reach the mic, but I owned it, and it was from that moment on that I knew this is what I had to do.
Who are your musical icons/inspirations? Why?
Cher…Everything about her. Her strength is matched by her sparkle. When in doubt, the motto is #WWCD (What Would Cher Do), and then I carry on…I got the experience to see her in concert. I really connected with her eclecticism, humor, and the way she brought to life all these fantastical visuals, then totally stripped it back and just masterfully delivered her songs. Iconic is an understatement. Love her.
What’s your songwriting process like?
I’m always collecting bits and pieces from anything and everything…random words, thoughts, phrases, magazine cutouts. I’ll sit down with my guitar or piano and flesh out melodies. Then I go to the studio armed with this collage of ideas, and my producer, ill Factor, will play me soundscapes that he’s been working on. From there, everything gels together (hopefully!) and the songs emerge.
Are you still Miami based? How has growing up/living in Miami shaped your music? What’s your favorite thing about living in Florida?
Miami has me completely captivated right now, from it’s retro & 50s stylings to the fresh energy that feels like it’s bursting from every street corner. I’m completely caught up in the city’s pulse, and it’s connected to everything I’m creating. Miami is magic. The whole city is set against this lush tropical backdrop with liquid sunsets and island weather…(even in January!)
How did the song “Run the Night” come about?
I felt like I needed the dance party anthem for the “glamorous runaway” that I aspired to be. It was this incredible moment in time because at a very early stage, the song was chosen to be featured on Just Dance 2017, so it was a particularly fun experience realizing it, as there was such an amazing opportunity for the song
before it was even finished!
Speaking of “Run the Night,” the music video is so good! What was the best part of creating it?
Thank you so much! I got the chance to work with the choreographer that did the “Hotline Bling” video (Soraya Lundy). We had a special moment on set shooting some silhouette footage. Soraya was standing just off-camera and we were “shadow dancing”. She was improvising movements, and I was mimicking them in real time. There was an incredible energy that came over the set when that happened.
Let’s talk about your newest song – what was the inspiration for “24/7 Dreamers?”
I wrote “24/7 Dreamers” inspired by the American spirit. It’s a reminder to always believe in dreams, to have hope, to keep going no matter what you’re faced with. Every story has struggle built into it, but this song is about remembering your underlying spirit and strength to keep going. And I hope it offers this message in a
way that’s playful and fun.
What are your thoughts/feels on social media and music? Do you think it’s beneficial/destructive/both/neither for the music industry/musicians?
It’s taken me a hot second to even wrap my head around social media! It’s limitless, and I feel like I haven’t even scratched the surface with the possibilities…At the moment, I love to communicate so directly with my fans, and it feels like a really empowering and authentic way to tell my story, constantly offering content that is truly coming from my own voice and images that I’m capturing in my daily life.
If you had to describe your music with a color, what color and why? (haha weird question, I know)
Hot pink! My favorite. I actually looked up the “meaning of pink” on google (AKA the gospel!) and it so brilliantly informed me that pink is a mix of the “passion of red” with the “purity of white”. And not only that, but it’s also the “color of hope”. So everything about that made me love it even more, and HOT pink is just that much brighter and bolder.
When you’re not making music, what do you love to do?
I’m an off-hours, off-season kind of girl who loves a long walk on an empty beach in one of those giant, fuzzy, oversized sweaters (that is somehow still chic?) and then lounging over an al fresco dinner (preferably Italian) somewhere in South Beach with my fabulous friends.
If you had to pick one song (by any artist) to listen to on repeat, what would it be?
Right now I can’t get enough of that Sam Smith song “Money on my Mind”. I was cleaning out my room recently and found the album (on a CD…gasp!) I remember getting it while I was on a road trip out west, driving through the desert to Las Vegas. At the time, I had a crush on a guy that told me I would love this album, and so listening to this song now is totally bringing me back to that time and that feeling.
If you could travel/tour anywhere in the world, where would you go and why?
April in Paris! I got the chance to be there last spring when the “Run the Night” choreography was being shot for the Just Dance 2017 game. I walked all over the city, and every single moment was leaving me wanting more. Someday, when I get the chance to tour there, it will definitely be a dream coming to life.
What was your favorite moment of 2016?
The wrap moment in Paris on set of the Just Dance shoot for “Run the Night”. I felt like I was a part of something really exciting. As an artist, so much time is spent creating, searching, trying to pull a vision together. It’s a rare and fabulous moment when you feel like something is really coming together in a positive and real way. That’s what that moment was for me.
What’s up next for 2017?
Epicness!! Brighter colors, bigger records, great opportunities! A chance to connect more with my fans…I’m just at the beginning of my story, and I’m thrilled for the ride! (Lionel Richie once told me “Just keep going”…and I think it’s the best piece of advice!!)
And please let me know if there’s anything else you’d like to include in the interview – any important/upcoming dates, releases, etc. Or just anything you’d like our readers to know!
Thank you! It’s amazing for me to have my new song “24/7 Dreamers” premiering on LADYGUNN!