As I was going through my Twitter feed a couple of weeks ago there was one tweet that caught my eye. I’ve always enjoyed listening to new artists because you never know what to expect. There’s always this exotic sensation I get when discovering new music, especially if it’s good. Something about this girl’s name intrigued me and next thing you know I’m listening to her music on SoudCloud.
Emanuela Drei, AKA Giungla, is an Italian singer-songwriter based in Bologna. Giungla in Italian means “jungle” and it also somehow describes her music as well as her persona. I like to think of her music to be grungy, minimal pop, as well as honest. I found Giungla’s style very unique and was curious to know more about her story. I had the opportunity to talk to her and get some questions answered, and here’s what she had to say:
How long have you been making music, what made you start?
I started taking piano lessons when I was five and I’m very thankful to my parents, since they encouraged me a lot, and yet would never actually force me or anything. Getting this close to music at such a young age really helped me out at a second stage. Once I blew out twelve candles, I started playing guitar and soon, without even realizing it, I was into writing too. I used to record on tape in my bedroom and did it almost unconsciously – it was just natural to me and felt like the only place where I belonged.
I believe one of the reasons that urged me to make music was being a huge fan of it, always listening to a lot of different stuff, always reading every single word printed on CD booklets. But the thing that really inspired me was going to live shows, seeing what music was really about and somehow getting a glimpse of who I wanted to be.
I remember that one time my best friend and I ventured out to see Alanis Morissette and a guy offered to take me in his arms so that I could have a better view of the stage for a few songs; it was my first gig, I was thirteen, and short (and still am). Since then I started digging the music and making new discoveries day by day; it was the moment when artists like PJ Harvey, Kathleen Hanna, Sleater-Kinney, Gossip entered my life one after the other.
If you could describe your music in one word, what word would it be and why?
Tangled. Probably because I think that both my sound and personality are exactly this way. It’s also a word connected with my stage name.
Is there a reason behind your name, GIUNGLA?
Giungla is the Italian word for ‘jungle’. I like the fact it gives you the idea of something you cannot fully understand nor control because of its innate nature. And that’s the way I believe one should approach music: you can’t think too much about it, it’s more a matter of impulse.
Who are your musical inspirations?
I don’t know if there’s any direct influence to my music. I listen to a lot of different stuff and love to give my tunes many different twists. Also, I’ve always had a soft spot for pop music. I like its fresh, open-minded solutions and solid songwriting. When working on my music, I try to “think pop”, still I use a few simple elements and make some sort of translation of them. Of course I draw major inspiration from many musicians of the likes of PJ Harvey, Grimes, Warpaint, Chromatics, El Perro Del Mar. I love the fact they all have a unique attitude and their work feels so complete.
What impact do you wish to achieve in the music industry?
I have set some goals and there are so many entries I’d love to check off of my bucket list, like touring internationally. I’ll just try do my best and I’m ready to enjoy this journey!
What are your future plans within your musical career?
My debut EP will be out on vinyl in a few days and I’m dead excited about that. Plus, this summer I’m going to play some cool festivals alongside lots of great acts in the bill.
Giungla’s EP will be available on May 20th or you can pre-order it here.
Official website: www.giunglamusic.com
Photos by: Giulia Mazza