We caught up with the evocative artist to find out about her new music and life in Rome during Covid-19

BY SOPHIE GRIFFITHS

Christine Herin, known professionally as Dolche, is an Italian-French singer, songwriter, composer and record producer who already boasts a 20-year music career. She composes, arranges and plays all of her music and she’s recently caught our attention with her eclectic and powerful music videos. 

In her new single, Big Man, Dolche sings about a symbolic creature incarnating all differences and outcasts. 

Dolche said of the song: “All white supremacists, homophobes and fundamentalists will hate this song” but declared her hope is to inspire them to think differently. 

Dolche wrote this song because she felt inspired and outraged by the spreading culture of fear and hate promulgated by too many political representatives. “I love the Big Man” she sings in the joyful tune as a powerful response to that. 

The video, created and directed by the talented Chris Shimojima, tells the story of a “disease” that spreads around people in the streets of New York City (keep in mind this was before we’d even heard of Coronavirus).

This contagion generates fear, violent reactions and derision for the first two characters getting infected in the beginning. But it is then embraced and celebrated by the following characters. The faces of the many actors mix into a superior, wild creature that symbolises the power of diversity and union. 

Big Man comes after the release of Dolche’s first single Roma, from the new album Exotic Diorama which will be released in October this year. We caught up with Dolche to find out about life in lockdown and the inspiration for her wild and poignant music videos. 

Catch our exclusive premiere of Dolche’s video for her new single Big Man below!

DIVA: How have you been finding quarantine? Have you still been continuing to make music?

DOLCHE: Luckily there is no virus that can stop music! Music has been the best cure for me during  quarantine. We have all been deeply hit by this crisis. I had to cancel my concerts and a promotional tour that I was organising. But I noticed that people needed more art than they did before to overcome their isolation. My fans asked me for more music and I’m glad that I could do something to help. There have been moments when I felt useless because I was no doctor, no nurse or no farmer. How could I do my part in helping others, apart from respecting lockdown rules or donating to hospitals in need? At that moment I decided to release a song, that was not planned called Roma. I made a video and published it and, from the feedback I received, I felt that this was something that truly gave a bit of pleasure in a moment of pain.

How do you think the music industry has changed over the last few months?

Would you go to a concert tomorrow, even if it was The Rolling Stones and you had a free ticket? This is the answer to your question. The music industry is facing such a deep crisis that most of us independent artists, whose only income was from live concerts and merchandising sales, literally will last a few months before we need to give up music and find a different way to sustain ourselves. Yes, there are live streaming concerts and yes there are some online festivals but it simply does not work for now.

Your album comes out in October – can you tell us a little bit about what we can expect?

A lot of people keep telling me that when they listen to a song of mine they envision scenes in their heads as if they were watching a movie. Well, if this is true, you shall expect a Wes Anderson movie that turns into Tarantino, passing through Fellini, Godard and Spielberg.

Your music for the first single Roma is super powerful, where did you get the idea from?

From the city itself! The real sounds of the city (chirping birds, traffic noise etc) are recorded in the track too. I came to Rome 10 years ago and I immediately felt home here. Not that I fit in or that my lifestyle was similar to the Romans, but in the sense that Rome is like a wise, irreverent, charming and practical mother. She accepts everyone, no questions asked. And the warm embrace that I received was a big life lesson. Everything comes and goes. Love, beauty, life itself. They all end and begin again and this is the eternal beauty of it. If you can accept it and watch the spectacle you will understand the soul of this city which saw empires come and go and loves each and everyone of its scars.

What did you want the music video to reflect? 

I wanted it to show what would otherwise been impossible to show If we were not in total lockdown. Rome itself, bare and pure. Under the absurd circumstances that we are living, we had the unique chance to see it for the only time in thousands of years. The time-lapse videos of the empty city and projecting them on my body. I wanted to whisper this love song to Rome in her ear, as if it was just me and her, both naked in a magical instant. I couldn’t go out and tell her…so I invited her into my living-room.

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