By Nicholas Jason Lopez
An island girl to heart (Kaua’i to be exact), neo-soul/pop singer-songwriter Sierra Blax brings a blend of soul, R&B and chill-pop as the soundtrack to an aesthetic complete with ocean breezes and palm trees.
Her latest anthemic single “INYIM (It’s Not You It’s Me)” is a playful admission and acknowledgment of her “hot mess life” in Los Angeles ultimately trying to avoid heartbreak on both ends, topped with a sassy soundscape collaboration with Tim Rose to accompany her vulnerability.
The Music Bugle had the chance to speak with the California-based musician about “INYIM (It’s Not You It’s Me)” and more.
Music Bugle – What excites you the most about your style of music?
Sierra Blax – I think what excites me most is that everything you hear in my music is a collaborative effort of multiple musicians coming together and creating a song that is something we all vibe with and because of that, it allows me to put out authentic music that is influenced by R&B, soul and pop.
Music Bugle – What directly inspired your single ‘INYIM”?
Sierra Blax – I think I was going through a low moment of dealing with self-esteem issues and I just felt like I had to write about it to shed some mental weight. I thought it would be an interesting perspective to write about myself from a point of view that admires and owns up to all my flaws, but in a way of owning up to myself, for my own growth and in hopes other people can relate to that.
Music Bugle – What creative advantages do you feel come with being a singer-songwriter?
Sierra Blax – I think the creative advantages of being a singer-songwriter allows me to write about things/topics that are outside of the box. In my opinion, it gives us the ability to have our own voice and tell our own story and I think that’s an important thing to hold true to as an artist. Personally, I wouldn’t want to sing someone else’s song. It wouldn’t feel authentic or honest to myself.
Music Bugle – Where do you go when you need an escape?
Sierra Blax – That one’s easy. I grew up with the ocean, so when I feel like I need to reconnect with myself, I usually go surfing or just take a trip to the beach and go for a swim. I call it OT, “Ocean Therapy.”
Music Bugle – Who are you listening to right now, music-wise?
Sierra Blax – Christian Kuria, Yebba and I’m currently revisiting Amy’s Frank album again.
Music Bugle – How have you been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic?
Sierra Blax – It’s caused a great impact on me financially. I worked as a bartender and played wedding gigs to make money for a while and with Covid, those industries took a big hit. However, on the other side, Covid has also affected me in positive ways as well. It was so nice to take a break from the hustle and bustle of all the industries I worked in and reconnect with myself and my purpose. I was able to record a bunch of songs during the pandemic, which I probably wouldn’t have if I was working so much, so overall, I think the whole year of 2020 was a good wake-up call for everyone, mainly to be grateful for what you have and to keep your loved ones close.
Music Bugle – If you had to pick your own theme song, what would it be?
Siera Blax – Oooh! I’ve never been asked this question before! (Laughs) Right now, I’d probably have to say “Leave The Door Open” by Silk Sonic, because I was obsessed when it first came out and it’s such a groovy tune, but my ultimate theme song would be Too Short’s “Blow The whistle”! (Laughs) Super random, but since high school, that’s been my theme song and it still hits hard whenever I listen to it.
Music Bugle – Away from music, what’s something that people might be surprised to know about you?
Sierra Blax – Possibly that I kind of dabble in all things in the arts, such as photography, cinematography and design. I know I mentioned it before, but my ultimate first love is surfing. If I’m not working on music, most likely, I’m long boarding Malibu, Topanga, or el porto.
Music Bugle – Which of your songs were the hardest to write?
Sierra Blax – Probably “Good Type Of Love.” I think that song needed the most surgery lyrically and melodically. When I first wrote it, I didn’t intend of it being such a big pop tune, but during the production process, it felt like it just needed to go there, so with that being said, I really needed to change a lot of the lyrics in the verses and melody to compliment the production and give it more of that happy feeling.
Music Bugle – What do you hope for from the rest of 2021?
Sierra Blax – I hope that I can find more balance and positive flow in my life. Now that things are reopening and we’re somewhat getting back to normal, I’m starting to feel the pressure of having to meet deadlines and working overtime. It’s quite a big shock to the psyche coming right out of a pandemic, but life will always come at you with challenges. I just hope for 2021, I keep up with my positive growth!