In the music world, you find musicians that cannot be defined by a single style. These musicians, good or bad, usually have all different inspirations from all different genres. Today, I found a great musician who is unique. Her name is Dessy Di Lauro. She has a beautiful, interesting sound that has been worked on since 2004. This is my exclusive interview with her.
How long have you been singing professionally?
I grew up in the church. My mom put me in the church choir from the time I could open my mouth. Haha, I would always be singing and it would really annoy her. So, I guess I sang professionally starting (maybe) when I was 15.
You have a very unique sound. Vocally, who has inspired your music?
Well, I am mixing 1930s with a contemporary sound. I grew up with a lot of old stuff. My parents were really interested in the Harlem Renaissance movement and they felt like it was really important for us to know what it meant. Cab Calloway, Fats Waller, Fletcher Henderson, and Duke Ellington were constantly being played in my household; and that is a part from growing up listening to a lot of gospel music. I love Whitney Houston, Luther Vandross, and Donny Hathaway. Then you got the South of me because I’m part Latina as well. Then you throw in hip-hop because I am a hip-hop child ,and this is the sound that you get. Overall, my main influences are: Cab Calloway, Whitney Houston, and Luther Vandross. This is the sound that you get from mixing all of those influences.
How can you explain your style to someone who has never heard your music before?
Well, haha, this is how we explain it at concerts: If Cab Calloway, Lauryn Hill, and Outkast had a baby, this is the sound that it would have. We call it “neo-ragtime”. “Neo-ragtime” is “Feathered Fro-Hawk Futuristic Art Deco Centric Harlem Renaissance Hep Music”.
I hear that you have a new album coming out on the horizon. What should my readers expect from it?
Pretty much anyone that knows Dessy Di Lauro knows that this is a continuation of the sound that I am pushing. That neo-ragtime feel and style. This album is much edgier than my previous album. We got some really older samples actually on the album. I don’t want to give much away but we do have an original Cab Calloway song sampled on the album which is really hard to get but we did it. That is a big deal and the track that it is on is banging! It came out great! But overall, this new album has topics that are edgier, beats that are edgier, and things are a little bit darker.
That’s really great that you got the Cab Calloway sample!
Yeah. You know, we’ve been pushing it for a couple months, and trying to get it, and we finally got the ball rolling and we got it. We are very excited for that.
Do you write your own music?
Yes. Me and my partner, Ricky, always work on the music. We are co-creators so we created this sound from the ground up but it is great to know that we found our sound. We invented neo-ragtime together.
What is your process to writing music?
This is already our sound so sometimes the songs just come. Most of the time, Ricky will just start playing something and I will create our melody and then put lyrics to it. Sometimes it comes easier than other times. Other times, I will have a sketch for a melody in my head and Ricky will build around it. But yeah, the style is ours. When we sit down to work, it just flows and isn’t too hard to find what we are trying to create.
How long does it take for you to create and smooth out a track before going to production?
Sometimes it is a lot quicker than others and other times you create something and put it off to go back to later. Sometimes, because of our centralized sound, it could take 10 minutes and everything is done. Other times, it takes a week or is put off for months. It doesn’t always flow but most times it does. Some tracks we have put off for two years. It all depends on the rate of flow.
How long have you guys been writing together?
We have been writing together since 2004. Lately, he has been rehearsing for that Madonna tour but we will be performing side by side in conjunction with that show.
Do you have any shows coming up?
Yes! If you check online, we have many shows coming up and all of the details are on our website. Our website can be found here at http://www.dessydilauro.com/. You guys can even sign up for my newsletter and you get some special perks for signing up for that.
Check out Dessy’s previous single below!