Interview – Florie Namir

Florie Namir is a talented musician who released a track titled I Wanna Be In Love With You back in November of last year. She’s got a really diverse sound, mixing jazz and classical music in fantastic fashion. I wanted to find out more about Florie so decided to conduct an interview – read on below to find out more!

By Jane Howkins

You recently released an EP titled I Wanna Be In Love With You, which we reviewed. What can you tell us about this song and where can it be purchased?

Like my other songs, I Wanna Be In Love with You is a personal piece. It’s about a situation where one person feels less emotionally bound even though they wish they weren’t. I will leave it at that. The song and the rest of the EP can be purchased in either a digital form or as a CD on my Bandcamp page: https://fl…far-away-2

Has the pandemic hindered your work much?

In some ways, yes. I moved from Boston, MA to London, where I had to start over musically speaking since I didn’t know many people in my field in London. Before the pandemic started escalating, I secured a few interesting performance opportunities. And then everything vanished into thin air. I missed performing, so I recalculated my path and figured out a way to broadcast performances from my home, which led to a weekly online concert series with guest musicians. Instead of crying over spilt milk, I drank tea. It ended up being a busier time than ever. These strange times also bore a few new songs in terms of writing. The conclusion is, always look inside yourself to see if and how you can change a situation.

What is the writing and recording process like for you?

For me, writing is excitement. When new songs flow on a good day, I feel like I just discovered the moon and I can’t wait to share it. The last recording I made was more self-aware. It was meticulous work to deliver a performance in the best way to suit the songs. In earlier days, I used recording to simply capture the music so I wouldn’t forget it. I would add more vocals and synths once I had the essential voice and piano parts laid down. It was a sense of discovery. I used to email those recordings to my friends as I finished them, and we would all get excited together. These recordings are DIY sounding in quality, but they have magic because they came from a pure and raw place. Eventually, I released a few of these songs in a 3-song EP, called In My Room, also on my Bandcamp page.

You’ve got quite a unique sound, with both jazz and classical influences heard in your music. How do you manage to combine them together so successfully, and which genre do you prefer to perform?

Oh, thank you! I don’t do anything particular to tie genres together. I’ve trained in classical composition for many years and learned all the tricks of the trade, so when I write songs, I can’t avoid including some of those classical elements. I’ve also performed in many genres, from rock to soul, Eastern European folk, Israeli art songs and Russian Operas. What I loved about all of them was the ability to connect emotionally to what I was singing. Expressing the meaning of a song, regardless of genre, is very satisfying and moves me. One of my songs, which I have yet to release, has a reggae beat. It just felt suitable for that particular song. I let songs be what they need to be.

Do you plan to release any singles in the near future?

Yes! I have many songs in the drawer that I would love to record. Whether I release them as singles, an EP or an LP will depend on the funds I can raise. I hope to release the best from these songs and some new ones soon.

You’re originally from Tel Aviv, but are currently based in London. How does living in London compare, generally and in terms of the music scene?

Tel Aviv is a tiny place compared to London, but it comprises of different vibrant music scenes. There is indie rock, hip-hop, electronic and a more mainstream scene that fills out large clubs. But it’s hard to make a living as a musician.

What/who influences you most as an artist? What have you been listening to recently?

I think it’s a combination of different types of music that I listen to during my transformative years. Those included very poppy songs and ballads that would play on the radio, which I would record on cassette. Also, music that I learned as a piano student, like Bach, Mozart, Beethoven and Chopin. Alongside, I would listen to The Beatles, Björk, dEUS, Pink Floyd, Pearl Jam, and later on Ella Fitzgerald, Jeff Buckley, and Stravinsky. I’ve been teaching a new course this term that introduces a different genre each week, so this week I’ll be listening to a lot of EDM (electronic dance music).

Do you have any tour dates lined up?

Not at the moment, though I do have a gig coming up 18th May at The Bedford in London.

What can people expect from one of your shows and why should people come and see you perform live?

I’m kind of old school – I play live on the keyboard and sing. There’s always some improvisation, so each show is unique. I’m a shy person, but I’m not afraid to be exposed emotionally on stage. I love that we can acknowledge an array of feelings. It creates such a powerful, almost therapeutic experience.

Any last words for the fans?

Thank you for taking some time to listen. Thank you for making the music part of your world. Thank you for your support. I’m looking forward to meeting you in person at one of my shows!