May 21, 2011
Straight from the pages of the new special Brasil edition of RAGGED, we’re thrilled to give you an exclusive excerpt from our feature story with Danielle Barbe! Catch us on Vans Warped Tour all summer long and download the entire issue featuring more photos with the band for free right here.
“This felt like just a couple of girlfriends talking!” exclaimed Danielle Barbe as our interview was coming to a close. I agreed and said goodbye, but as I put the phone down it really hit me how right she was.
At 23 years old, Barbe is an energetic force of goodwill and wit that loves vintage fashions and Pinterest. See? She’s just like any other friend. That is, if one of your girlfriends just happens to have an unbelievable singing voice and is joining the Warped Tour in July.
The Pittsburgh native released her self-titled debut album in 2010, but thanks to several battle-of-the-bands wins and the unbelievable support from her online fan base through Facebook and Twitter, Barbe has skyrocketed to a level of popularity that she could never have imagined while growing up singing show tunes and hymns.
Here, Danielle talks with RAGGED about keeping up with fans, fashion, how not to take criticism personally and how bribery is obviously one of the greatest way to start a career.
When did you start singing?
Danielle Barbe: When I was about 6. I was incredibly shy when I was little. My parents basically bribed me to sing in the school play. My best friend had a rabbit and I wanted one, so my parents said, “We’ll get you a rabbit if you sing in the play.” And they got me the rabbit.
What made you truly decide to pursue music as a career, as opposed to just being bribed for a new pet?
When I was about 14 or so, I started singing in my brother’s band and then it just evolved from there. It got more serious as we grew up and the band names got a lot better as well!
So you had a very musical family growing up?
Yeah, my grandmother was an opera singer. That has to be where I got my voice; no one else can sing in this family at all!
You cite powerful, iconic musicians like Carole King and Marianne Faithfull as muses. What draws you to these women?
Well, I always loved The Rolling Stones. I was so fascinated with Mick and Keith growing up, and with all these male frontmen like Steven Tyler, Chris Robinson and Scott Weiland. It started out that I was more interested in guy-fronted bands than woman-fronted bands. As I got older, I started to listen to and like Carole King, Sheryl Crow…Alanis. Fiona Apple. I started to find women who were inspiring and angsty!
It’s been widely said that you have a large amount of stage presence for a solo artist starting out. How do you maintain the energy?
The guys in my band just laugh at me. I’m up at 7:00 a.m. every morning. They’ll sleep late because they’ll be out late, but I’ll still be up at seven! I have my coffee, go for a run, I answer all of the emails and I’m still wide-awake and ready to go!
(Continued in the new issue of RAGGED…)
posted by Staff