Canadian Singer-Songwriter Profile: Andreea the Narrative

Updated on November 17, 2017
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Karl has been a freelance writer for over 10 years. He's passionate about music, art, and writing!

Andreea the Narrative
Andreea the Narrative

Andreea the Narrative is a Saskatchewan singer-songwriter who explores her reality and the world around her through her songs. Writing songs is a form of therapy and a creative outlet for her. She says, “I studied music and I played guitar but at a certain point I figured, ‘Why don’t I start writing, expressing myself and having my voice heard?’ ”

She elaborates, “What shapes my songwriting is a lot of personal experience and things I see happening in the world today. Right now, the political climate is quite troubling and this is a pivotal point of change in society. It’s definitely worth writing about.”

Canadian indie musicians have been a strong influence on her. Andreea says, “I’m influenced Emily Haines who is the front individual of Metric and part of Broken Social Scene as well as a solo artist. I also admire Ron Sexsmith. He’s a great Canadian songwriter and he’s been at it forever. Tegan and Sara are another influence because they came around at a time when they were needed.”

The process of writing a song starts with an instrumental melody for Andreea. She explains, “I start very bare bones and write with my Canadian-made Norman 12 string. I’ll just kind of work on it from there and see what fits into the mood I’m writing in lyrically. A lot of times I’ll write a few bars of a concrete song idea and I’ll abandon it and come back to it months later. I’d say most of my work right now is unfinished and unpolished. Eventually I’ll go back and tighten it up, make it into something that’s usable and performable. As a songwriter, the goal is to share your work.”

Working at the process of songwriting is something that’s important for her. Andreea says, “I try to set aside some time each week to write whether it be an hour here or an hour there. Whether or not I make any progress is another story. I think most of the battle of songwriting is just showing up.”

The recording process is something that Andreea has enjoyed over the making of her two previous albums. She says, “It’s an interesting process. I worked with a different studio for each project. The key is working with people you trust and people that will help bring out your best. I enjoy being in the studio. It’s a warm, creative environment. I also like inspecting all the gear because I’m a secret gear junkie!”

She adds, “I definitely recommend making that investment for any young artists wanting to get into it. There’s things that studio professionals know how to do that you, as a home recording enthusiast, have no idea how to do. It creates a better product and one that you have more people than you working on it.”

There are two main challenges that Andreea identifies for her career. She points out, “Everyone has a laptop and a recorder these days and can get their music out there. I think the point is that it’s difficult to distinguish yourself from everyone else in the market who is equally, if not more talented than you are.”

She continues, “Another great challenge that I face personally is financial. I’m working two jobs, I have normal human responsibilities like family too. It’s hard to fit it all in and set aside that hard earned money towards making music happen. Right now, I’d love to be able to go on a tour and share my music, but financially and normal human responsibility-wise that’s not an option at this time. Hopefully in the future it will be.”

The Saskatchewan music scene comes in for high praise from her. Andreea says, “There’s a vivid music scene in Saskatchewan with great acts like Kacy and Clayton, the Garrys and the Sheepdogs.Also noted the long standing musicians of The Northern Pikes. Saskatchewan has potential to create the next big indie act. It’s very competitive in terms of who gets the grant funding and who gets their name on the bill. There are a lot of places that you can play that don’t necessarily pay you money but they get you some great exposure.”

Andreea is in the process of expanding her career while balancing all of her other commitments. She says, “These days I’m playing free shows, smaller shows and the odd paid show here and there. Eventually, I’d like to work on getting my music featured in TV and film, but with the current state of the Saskatchewan film industry, that’s somewhat problematic.”

She’s also interested in fostering young talent. She says, “I see myself as being blessed with the opportunities I’ve had so I’d like to pay it forward and help out other young artists.”

In the longer term, Andreea has set herself several goals. She explains, “I’d say my goal is to get touring and get my music out there to a wider audience. In the next ten years, I’d like to have another album or EP under my belt and get something in some kind of film or TV. Hopefully by then I’ll get to work on my side project and bring that to fruition.”

The side project that she’s talking about is creating music for cats and dogs. Andreea points out, “It’s a market that has a lot of science behind it. There have been studies showing that animals respond well to music. Music is supposed to calm and enhance a dog’s time while they’re home alone.”

There are a number of ways in which Andreea replenishes her creative wellsprings. She explains, “I like to take creative breaks from music. I cook a lot. I’m a vegan so I like to experiment with vegan cooking. I started making a little YouTube cooking show as a break from musical creativity.” When she isn’t cooking, she's checking out her local spot, Nosh Eatery & Tap, as it’s her favourite spot for a creative atmosphere and excellent plant-based cuisine.

She adds, “Something that really pushes me to being more creative and helps me to connect with the music community is volunteering at music festivals. This year I volunteered with the Regina Folk Festival. I was checking gear in and out which was great. It was a good opportunity to meet people, check out the gear which I love and see a bunch of my peers from all over Saskatchewan get up on the main stage and play. It was quite encouraging because if my friends are doing this, I can do it too.”

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