"BREATHE IT" - LISTEN TO THE SOFT R&B SOUNDS OF J.LAMOTTA.

Singer-Songwriter

For some artists, the challenges of the pandemic haven’t stopped them from creating. On the contrary, the limitations placed upon their everyday lives have made their creative juices flow more freely. 

 

This is the case for Hebrew singer-songwriter J.Lamotta. She’s been working on her brand new single “Breathe It” over the last months, which she wrote, produced and recorded in her own home studio in Tel Aviv. 

 

Having developed her diverse music while based in Berlin for the last seven years, this release presents a new chapter for Jay: “I am in Tel-Aviv now and it feels like a new beginning to me. I did not expect all of this to happen so quickly, and working on this song helped me with embracing those changes.” Certainly one major change is that “Breathe It" is written and sung in her mother tongue, Hebrew – while her productions so far have been in English. 

 

We had a chat with J.Lamotta, who was still dressed up with blue fingernails from the shoot of her music video in January, about her past, current, and future projects, as well as her situation right now during lockdown.

STUCK:

We see you’ve got some fake blue fingernails...

 

J.Lamotta: 

Yeah, I put them on for the shooting of my new music video yesterday. I couldn't wash my dishes the other day, or even open up a can of coke. I was like, fuck, those fake nails are not made for me. So I think I'm just gonna keep them for special occasions – just for the vibes, because it adds and gives energy to the video. I felt like it was really on point.

 

STK:  

Tell us more about the video please.

 

Jay: 

So, yesterday we filmed a music video in a club in Tel Aviv. This club is one of the most famous here and they are closed right now of course. But I know the owner of the place and he was like “okay we are doing it kinda underground”. This music video is going to be next level for me. I was dancing with four mad dancers behind me. For me it took like three weeks to practice this 16 bar routine. And then all these girls show up on the same shooting day, learning the choreography in 20 minutes and nailing every move on the dance floor for four hours straight. Working with such professional dancers is the shit. The whole team was crazy good. I am still on a cloud from the shooting. This is my first release in my mother tongue, Hebrew; the first time I really took it seriously to drop a song in my language, you know.

STK: 

How is it different to your English productions so far? Do you feel more comfortable?

 

Jay:

Because my love for music started with 30s/40s jazz that always included English lyrics, my productions were in English as well. 

And that music for me started with English. So that's how I feel the music in my body. Doing it in Hebrew now is very challenging for me, because it doesn't flow as easy with the Hebrew and its different noises and pronunciations. So it doesn't really flow and you need to kind of play a game to match words with the flow of the song and it's fucking hard to do it. But now I'm starting to feel more and more comfortable doing it. So it's an important step and learning for me.

 

STK:

Tell us how it was to move back to your home in Tel Aviv during Covid? When did you do it?

 

Jay:

I've been here since coronavirus first started, so like the 8th March 2020. I did visit Berlin a few times during that time, but I'm kinda based here at the moment. However, I would love to be back in Berlin maybe in springtime if possible. 

 

It's exciting you know, the whole experience of coming here to my home now and hanging out here again. I've started to feel like working on a full album in Hebrew now, so it obviously has affected my music. I'm also finalizing an album with Japanese producer Budamunk right now. For many beatmakers out there he is a very big inspiration. The first time I moved to Berlin I started listening to him just as a fan. Now it's just crazy that I got to know him personally, visited him in Japan, and I’m now actually producing a whole album with this guy. It's called “Searching Skies,” and it's like a 10-track-album and pretty trippy – like Budamonk style. We're mixing and mastering the album right now and it will come out this year. It has been a real blessing for me. It's a collaborative project between the record label called Jezzy Sport in Tokyo and Jakarta Record based in Berlin.

 

Other than that, my plans got cancelled of course because of the pandemic and the lockdown measures – like all of us I guess. I had plans to stay in Japan for a month at least, be part of a short-movie, go to LA, do more music videos and a Europe tour. But yeah, it is what it is. I'm kind of cool with that.

STK:

You also did a track with Suff Daddy, right?

 

Jay: 

Yeah Magic! That was the first track I've done with Jakarta Records. I was just a visitor at this time and they invited me to hang out. I was like, "let's do some music guys' [haha]. So yeah, eventually we made this track and it took maybe two to three years to come out. It was really long because it came out in a compilation with Jakarta Records. But once it was out, I was like fuck yeah, we got more than 2 million plays on this one.

 

STK:

Your music development is so colorful. You started out with Hip Hop, then you got more focused on Soul and Jazz, and now you ended up in the R&B/pop genre. Is that right?

 

Jay:

Exactly this way. It's super exciting because we are evolving and changing you know. I'm not the same person I was three years ago. Now I can put fucking fake nails on. My projects are super different from each other. I don't have rules you know and I don't care too much about where exactly I'm gonna be in 5 years.

STK:

We think one of your most inspiring projects was the Beats on Road one you did with the ear-sight guys. You need some confidence to do that, chapeau!

 

Jay:

I'm so happy you like this particular video. I was practicing my ass off for this session. I was starting to sing through the power-sampler I took with me. So, we actually had like a mic plan at the beginning. We had a plan that I would grab a mic and start singing. But then, when we arrived and did a test, we found out it wouldn't work with an external mic. Then I said, maybe we can use the mic over the mixer. And then I tried it. And he said “fuck yes lets do it”. Also what I loved about this video was that it happened on the 8th of March which was International Women's Day, and this was actually not planned. They said that I am the first female artist in this series scheduled on this day. There was this one girl in the set saying "Fuck Yeah, lets go, happy International Womens Day". So yeah that added a lot to the special vibes of the session, I loved it!

 

STK:

During the pandemic you also had a release on a little boat right?

 

Jay:  

Yeah. That was for the release of my track ‘Brand New Choice’. I wanted to do at least  something on my release day instead of performing or having a concert with too many people. So, I recorded a live set on a boat of a friend. I think it's also kind of cool to try out new things and be creative in these situations.

STK:

I remember you also mentioned that the limitations make you more creative...

 

Jay:

Totally. I think I'm working with my limitations a lot. Always. I think this is what makes us more creative, gets us more inspired and makes us push the boundaries that exist as far as you can. I mean, imagine we have everything at anytime we want. It's important to not get mad about things you cannot have, but rather use the materials, tools and people surrounding you to create new stuff you know. I guess these kinda challenges get your creative flow going.

 

STK:

Is there something else that keeps you going and inspires you?

 

Jay:

Collaborations are so meaningful to me. If you share your vision and you are connecting with other people on the same level, sharing thoughts and ideas from the deepest part of your heart, it’s kinda divine and gives me a lot of energy. The most satisfying thing for me is like going to the studio, working on a song with like-minded people. And each one brings something unique along, which at the end becomes one piece that couldn't be created without one person inside the team. So that's also how I felt yesterday during the shooting. I had like 12 people around me on the set all wanting to create something – even though we had to kinda hide and the police could have caught us.

 

STK:

So, how have you experienced the lockdown in Israel?

 

Jay:

The lockdown feels like it’s getting more and more political here in Israel, and we don't trust the system here. The relationship between the public and the government is very bad. You can't really trust their words. So whatever they say it's very hard for me to cooperate. In Germany, for example, I feel like the relationship between the public and the government is more healthy. You know, when I heard Angela Merkel doing the press talk back in March it felt like this woman doesn't talk shit and you can trust her. And when I see the prime minister of Israel, sorry "crime minister", he doesn't care about the people and doesn't even try to encourage them to stay strong or whatever. 

 

Well, also this new album I'll release in Hebrew has some relation to that. It's soft and sweet and sexy and cool, but it also has a really strong message to the people here in Israel.

 

STK:

We are pretty sure you can inspire a lot of people out there!

 

Jay:

Yes, I hope so for sure and I’ll be super happy if I can give energy to people out there, especially right now. I mean, that is what we are doing just now, sitting here on Friday in lockdown and sharing energy from far away. I feel it!

Check out her music on Bandcamp and Spotify