Neo-soul artist and founder of Soulestial.GLD, Pia Morris, was born and raised in Tottenham, London. Growing up singing in church, the 26 year old was encouraged to find her voice in art; exploring dance, studying the violin, drums and guitar. Influenced by her father’s wealth of rare groove and soul vinyls, the smooth tones of Marvin Gaye, George Benson and Stevie Wonder act as a current for this song-bird to voyage on. Pia’s knowledge, beauty and sensuality transcends through her melodic sound, leaving her audience warmed by her raw and exposing lyrics.
Here what happened when i met Miss Morris:
TPOTD: So Pia who are you listening to at the moment?
PIA: A lot of the old stuff really. But the most current act is Nick Hakeem – I love him, he’s got a chilled vibe about his music; very raw and mellow. Solange obviously, I really feel like she’s put a more authentic hip hop and soul sound back on the map again.
TPOTD: It seems like you like a lot artists who are quite niche, what draws you to those artists over pop artists?
PIA: The lyrics. I like music that makes me think and feel. whereas with the mainstream – there are some good songs, but pop music doesn’t really challenge or motivate me.
TPOTD: Do you feel like there’s pressure for artists to change, once they become more successful?
PIA: As a musician you don’t want to have to work in an office, you want to get signed and for things to pop off. Then if you get signed, you’re offered all this money and treats and goodies – It’s the opportunity that you’ve been waiting for, so it gets harder to keep your integrity when you’re in a contract and experiencing perks.
TPOTD: Have you ever felt a pressure to change?
PIA: No. So many times in the studio, people say “oh you should try this”… but if it’s not doing anything for me I don’t want it. I am open to change and trying out new things, but if I don’t like it (puts arms up)…
TPOTD: So it’s artistic integrity over being famous?
PIA: If I spent my whole life singing music that means something to me in a small venue – that would be enough.
TPOTD: So you’re the founder of Soulestial.GLD, tell me how that came about?
PIA: I just wanted people to have access to good music and the artists that are out there. So I started writing reviews on music that I enjoy.
TPOTD: So its like your mixtape to the world…
PIA: Yeh, I just find it difficult to find blogs that weren’t all talking about the same mainstream material. Also i write about a lot of new people and i find its so hard to get exposed in a world thats so noisy.
TPOTD: The social media world has really put pressure on us as a society, which in-turn has impacted the creative industry…
PIA: Yeah!! You always see people doing things, which creates a obsession to stay current.
TPOTD: What do you feel is the difference between the artists you grew up listening to and artists now?
PIA: It’s extremely disposable. Social media has made things so fast. One day you’ve got a number 1 album and 6 hours later you’re 12 on the chart. But artists like Sam Cooke, are still being played today in adverts, young children sing along to there music some 30 years after its been released. But, are we gonna hear these new songs in 50 years?
TPOTD: I don’t know… It seems like its become about ‘how quick can I get attention?’, hasn’t it?
PIA: Yeah and I’m interested in artists who have good content and really want to send a message, not just have their name trend on Twitter.
TPOTD: You just had a gig, is that how you choose your artists?
PIA: Oh yeah… I did I have an event. My friend Jay, he’s amazing, he works with artists like Kelis. He hears someone like me or Mark TC, feels a passion from their music and genuinely loves working with them. So we collaborated on the event on the basis of him wanting to with new artists and me wanting to promote them. And it was a really successful night.
TPOTD: So whats in the pipeline for Soulestial.GLD and your own music?
PIA: Im just gonna keep looking for more artist to work with and do more gigs… And on the music side I’ve got a new song coming out this month, called ‘Visions’ and a E.P out in the new year.
Check out the video we filmed, featuring Pia Morris’ – Rejuvenate, Dir. by Daniel Bailey.
Photography by Daniel Bailey
Video directed by Daniel Bailey
Pia Morris Soundcloud : (click here)
Pia Morris Twitter: (click here)
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Thanks for reading.