Cara Leigh Talks About Her New EP: "It Feels Like Returning Home After Being Away for a Long Time"
Since 2013, award-winning Canadian singer-songwriter Cara Leigh has released five EPs, but her upcoming release, Home is arguably her strongest yet. Having spent the last few years outside of her comfort zone of the folk and indie genres to collaborate in the EDM world, Cara Leigh has begun to bridge a gap in the music industry by creating music with a fresh, new vibe. For Home, this meant that she has had the opportunity to challenge herself and try new things when it comes to songwriting or even her vocal performances.
Home, out March 2nd 2018, finds Cara Leigh returning to her roots with a new perspective. The result is an EP that will soothe your mind, your feelings, and captivate your emotions with an atmospheric, folk sound.
Interview by Dom Vigil
Can you tell us a little bit about yourself for any readers who might not be familiar?
For sure. I write and play music when I’m not working as a Registered Psychotherapist. I have been in bands for most of my life, and around 2012, I started collaborating over the internet when jamming with others became a bit tougher with my schedule. I’ve continued to collaborate online, but also recently have started jamming with local musicians again.
You recently announced that you’ll be releasing your sixth EP, Home, in March! For those who have been following you over the years, what can they expect from this upcoming release?
I think people who have been following me over the years will enjoy this release. I’ve returned to my folk/indie roots and think this is some of my best work to date.
How do you feel you’ve grown with the writing and recording of Home?
I kept re-writing these tracks. I wasn’t afraid to let a track sit and then totally rework it. I think previously I liked something I wrote and wanted to share it and I didn’t let ideas sit. This EP was all about working on being intentional and patient.
A title like home suggests that this is a fairly serious release. What makes this collection of songs Home to you?
You know when you’ve been travelling or are away from home for a long time, that feeling you get when you finally arrive home? I feel like I have been learning how to write in other genres for the last few years, but I’ve returned to my folk roots for this EP and it feels like returning home after being away for a long time.
What goals did you have in mind for these songs when you were working on them?
I wanted to write a collection of songs that reflected my acoustic/folk roots. When I discussed the EP with Cornelius Julius I was clear I wanted a folk foundation, but that also dabbled with pop, country and alternative elements.
Were there any challenges that you had to overcome when working on the EP?
The idea behind creating this EP was to not rush it and to enjoy the creation process. However, despite that original goal, I often found myself wanting it to be finished. Each stage presented opportunities for me to practice patience and even though it took almost 3 years to finish, I’m glad it wasn’t rushed.
You recently released your new single, “Ebb & Flow” from the EP. What inspired this track?
I realized that I was constantly wanting the pace of my life to be different. For example, if I had a packed schedule, I wished it was a bit less packed. If I had more space in my schedule, I wished I was busier. It meant I wasn’t enjoying those ebbs and flows. If I didn’t work on trying to fix that perspective, it would have continued to cause me unnecessary suffering that was within my control to shift.
Aside from the folk and indie world, you’ve also done quite a bit of work on the EDM side of things? What are some similarities between these very different genres of music?
When I collaborate on an EDM track, I write, sing and record my vocals. I do that for my own tracks also, but there are similarities of the writing and recording processes. You’re writing melody and harmonies, noting phrasing, and recording the vocals for production.
Do you feel your experience working in the EDM world has affected the way you write songs like the ones on Home?
I think it’s probably been overall good for my songwriting. I’ve been refining my voice and sound over the last few years and having opportunities to focus on writing vocals has presented fun learning challenges that I may not have otherwise experienced.
Can listeners expect to hear any more new music before Home drops in March?
There’s always a possibility of a collaboration being released. There are quite a few somewhere in the pipeline but there will not be any new solo tunes released before Home drops on March 2nd.
Do you have any other big plans for 2018?
I’m pretty excited there’s a music video for the Home release so I’d consider that a big plan. I’m going to be travelling a bit more this year to the US and will have opportunities to find inspiration outside of Canada. I’m working on some exciting collaborations, and have already started a new EP. I’m also planning to play more live shows locally.