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Anduze is a soul artist from St. Croix, US Virgin Islands in the Caribbean. He is one of the two lead singers of Parov Stelar’s band and they are working together since 2011. Recently we heard their new song “Don’t You Forget” which also features Lilja Bloom. Anduze and Parov Stelar have a great interaction with music and this is the beauty of working together, as he said.

If Anduze had to choose an artist to collaborate with, he would choose Sade, who is one of his main influences. But who is this new generation artist he would also like to work with? His love for our country -including food and people- is endless and that’s the reason he chose to live in Athens for the last four years. Also, Anduze recalls that last year he had an amazing time at Faust, where he performed with Stix (Keith McJimson) by his side.

Apart from his avocation with music, Anduze has also experimented with direction and cinema, since he directed his documentary about his own musical journey, entitled “The Lone Wolf Odyssey”. For this project he received an award, a great honor for him.

So, what are his future, professional plans? Is it the appropriate time for his first, solo studio album after ten years? What is his message for this global pandemic due to COVID-19? If you want to learn more about his musical career, read the interview Anduze gave to SounDarts.gr.

Would you like to introduce yourself to the greek audience. What is the story behind you as an artist? 

I’m Anduze, originally from St. Croix, US Virgin Islands in the Caribbean. I’m a songwriter, soul singer, and one of the two lead singers of ParovStelar Band.

Recently, we heard from you the single “Don’t You Forget” a collaboration with Parov Stelar and Lilja Bloom. Where do you receive inspiration from while writing a song?

“Don’t You Forget” came about as an idea I had for a great track ParovStelar sent me. I wanted to write a present poetic memoir about the romance of being on the road touring, and all the emotions that can evolve from it.

Since it is not the first time that you collaborate with Parov Stelar, how did this collaboration occur and what do you have to tell us about him? 

Marcus (ParovStelar) and I have been collaborating since 2011. We have a great friendship and working relationship. He sends me tracks and I write lyrics and melodies to them. Most of the time we find the direction and go with it, but sometimes it doesn’t fit. That’s the beauty of working together, putting a lot into the pot, but only taking what feels the best. This is our process.

As an artist, you manage to combine a retraux style of soul and funk music with post-modern elements. Is this a combination that concerns your personal style or did it arise over time and the need of the times?

I’ve always been a lover of so many genres of music. At my core, I’m a soul/funk artist. And I’m grateful to reside in a genre that can fuse together with so many other types of music. You can put a soul vocal almost anywhere and make it fit somehow.

If you had the chance to collaborate with your favorite artist or band, which one would you choose and why? 

Well, Sade would be the top. She’s been a major influence since I was very young. And if she was not available, I’d love to work with Lana Del Rey. I love her vision and the way she’s dictated her career. It’s a coherent aesthetic and musical direction that she’s in control of, and in the age of Do It Yourself, I find it really admirable that she’s taken that to the highest level.

Last year, you played a show at Faust in Athens having Stix McJimson by your side. How was that night? How did you experience your performance in front of the Greek audience? 

Yes! Stix (Keith McJimson) and I have been playing together for many years, since the days I lived in LA. I met him when he was 19 years old, saw him playing with another artist, and let’s say I stole him away! He’s an amazing drummer, and really a big part of the Anduze soul/funk sound. I brought him out to Greece for the show and to record songs for my upcoming album. The show at Faust was awesome, it was packed almost to capacity, and we had a great time with the crowd!

Apart from that, have you ever come to Greece for a cultural trip or vacation? What is your opinion about our country?

I live in Athens. Prior, during my time living in Los Angeles, I would save my money to come here once a year. I’ve always been in love with the country, food, people…and when I had the opportunity, I simply came and never left. Almost 4 years now. I’ve been all around the world, and there’s absolutely no place like Greece.

So, while you are writing a song do you want to do something that is more about creating a mood or setting up a specific plot?

For me, songwriting comes in many different forms. It can start with a melody in my head, a concept, a story I want to tell, or of course, something deeply personal. In the end, I think it just sparks from the moment…whatever may be inspiring at the time.

What is the greatest honor or advice that you have received throughout your career till now? 

That’s a really good question. Hmm. Well perhaps there are two “honors” in my career so far. Having my parents come to the ParovStelar show at The Zenith in Paris to see me perform last year, was very special for me. For them to see a tangible representation of all the work I’ve put in over the years…that was really cool. A year before that, I received an award for the documentary I directed (The Lone Wolf Odyssey) about my musical journey so far. It was very unexpected, and just a great honor to be recognized for something I’d worked really hard on. As far as best advice I’ve received – my father telling me to leave my wedding party to jump on stage with ParovStelar at the Release Festival after I had initially declined the offer to be a guest performer (trying to be the good groom). He told me I couldn’t miss the opportunity. Now, I’m part of the band, and no longer married…so let’s just say he was so right! Best advice!

What are your future, professional plans? Maybe a tour or a studio album? 

I have several releases coming in 2020. Features with Stones & Bones, Art of Tones, Joey Negro, etc. Plus of course, “Don’t You Forget” on the new ParovStelar album out now. Also working on a super cool new project I will announce later in the year. And yes, working on my first solo studio album in over 10 years.

As we all experience a global pandemic due to COVID-19, what are your feelings and what is your message to the people?

This pandemic has certainly been a difficult time for humanity and society as we know it. And of course, one of the industries hit hardest has been entertainment. But I am staying optimistic, and would say to everyone out there, that we are all in the same boat together. Nothing should be about the individual, instead about the collective. The more we work together to solve the problem, the faster we will be able to return to normalcy. Push through!

Do you think that something good will come out of this situation? 

I think the best thing to come from the situation, is the understanding of how grateful we should be in life. We take so many things for granted as we spin through each day. The taste will be that much sweeter when we are able to return to all the social activities we cherish.

Interview: Elektra Limnios

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