We caught up with Italian musician Dolche and her wife Chiara to chat about all things lyrical, spiritual and maternal.
U: Thanks for chatting with us, first of all do you want to give our readers a little intro to you and your music?
Dolche: Thanks for having me! I was born in the Alps in northern Italy, close to France, in a tiny village called Vignil. There’s about 40 people, mainly farmers and no kids, only me and my brother enjoying being in nature. No one played music in my family or village – my passion for music was clearly a system error haha!
I played professionally during the last 20 years. Dolche is a new project that’s totally me. I am proud, I could pick every aspect of my music from social media to videos, music to live shows. I am very proud to be Dolche.
Dolche – where did you come up with the name?
My name was inspired by a very beautiful movie that I love. It’s La Dolce Vita, by Fellini.
That means beautiful life right? – My Italian isn’t great but I’ve heard that phrase before I’m sure.
Sweet life yes. I love the romantic and the decadent vision of Italy that you find in this movie. It reminds me of my music, Dolce in italian means sweet. I took the word and added the letter ‘H’ in the middle. Do you like my name?
Yeah I love it and even more now I know the meaning behind it!
You said in the village you grew up in there wasn’t much music played, where do you find your musical inspiration from?
I have always been inspired by artists who change things and who had the courage for their ideas. For example Bowie, Joni Mitchell, Bjork and many others. Today I admire Jacobe Collier, Billie Elish, Stormae. My inspiration comes from what I live, what I eat and what I see in my life. Everything has music inside, I just listen to it.
Have you been inspired more during the pandemic to write more / produce more songs?
Haha bad times. I already had a lot of songs ready and an album to release. I’ve been inspired to work on videos and releasing as many as possible for these songs as I could.
If the pandemic is stopping live music, but it won’t stop music circulating and reaching people. I was able to adapt and get out there – even if we couldn’t actually leave the house. Music has this power.
Did you write any new songs?
No. Just some ideas for the new album and some lyrics. I mainly focused on the existing stuff.
You released your song “Universal Gloria” during December, how did it go?
My fans covered me with love and still are. This time I decided to give them an unusual song for Christmas. It reflects the truths of 2020 Christmas that should inspire. I’ve received lots of feedback from radio stations who were enthusiastic to play meaningful songs.
The video for the song is a strong, emotional reminder for all the beauty this world has to offer and for our duty to fight for it. Can you tell us about how you came up with the video concept?
Universal Gloria that talks about the biggest form of love – a universal one. Chiara and I, we wanted all the important things and battle to be present in the video. We always work together on the production. This year has put the entire humanity in front of their weaknesses and in front of important matters of the world. We’ve been forced to redefine our priorities.
This video simply reflects all that and is a call for universal love.
You have a cover song coming out in February, can you give us any sneak peak details on this?
Hahaha. Yes. When I make a cover, I never play the song as it was originally written. I try to make it mine.
I take the lyrics, the melody etc and put it all together again with my order and my style. My biggest first success was Psycho Killer – a cover from the Talking Heads. It was a big challenge, because nothing is more far from my music than a punk song. But it was super fun and I did in a couple of hours. I like unexpected results.
This new cover I think will be as surprising and absolutely weird as that first cover. I promise.
We also heard you and your wife have recently become parents, congrats. How’s it all going?
Thank you! For Chiara and me – this is the end of a long journey and the beginning of a new one.
Everything is going super good and we are truly happy. The baby is sleeping now. He has a spanish sperm donor and a mother who (me) has mountain blood in her veins. He was conceived during the first way of the pandemic and arrived during the second wave. He’s already an interesting person to me. Do you have kids?
Oh no, I don’t think I’ll be considering them for another few years yet!
Chiara– We did it late, so don’t worry you have time.
That’s exciting though for you both. Not many people can say they were born in a pandemic.
Chiara – Yeah he already has a story to tell!
Also absolute powerful imagery of you and your bump for your album, where did the visual idea come from?
My persona comes from my childhood and origin – every summer the cows come down to the valley from the mountain pastures. They are like pagan goddesses for us and people cheer for them.
Chiara – Yeah they really do!
Dolce – We play music, we adorn them with beautiful flower crowns – like the one I wear on stage. This is my homage to my culture based on nature.
Chiara – Dolche always wears the horns and the flower crown (different ones created by different designers and artisans!). When she was pregnant she wanted to communicate a powerful image to stand up as a woman musician and show that it is possible to have babies and to be able to work and create art.
The music world is very male dominated and extremely ruled by men. Dolce didn’t receive any help by the state, and her category in Italy is not even recognised as one.
She worked the entire time, and keeps working because the State doesn’t support her. She simply wanted to make a statement to remind the importance of the presence of women in the music industry. They need to be sustained and not to be afraid to be pregnant.
Final question, what does 2021 have in store for Dolche?
OMG 2021. The pandemic asked all musicians to redefine our schedules. I was supposed to tour and promote the album back in May. But of course all concerts have been cancelled.
So I will take this time to work on my next album and ideas. So when we’re out of this difficult moment, I will be able to tour and begin the recordings for the next projects. I’m a musician. I’ve faced many hard times but music is always the solution for me, the pandemic won’t stop me.
We’re excited to see what you do next!
She / Her
Dolche was interviewed by Lucy Everett