Interview: "Night Bus" - Caitlin Lavagna
‘Night Bus’ is so relatable, and I love the melancholy vibe it has! What is the story behind the track?
Caitlin: Night Bus is about being a young creative in a big city with life getting in the way of that creativity. Working 40 hours a week, burning money on everything apart from your career, going around in circles and seeing the worst of a city you thought would give you your big break. As a young Welsh Actor Musician, I experienced this when deciding to finally leave London and move home to the Rhondda. It was a difficult time, because after all, everyone says you won't be successful unless you're in the City. That was not my experience at all. I was so tired. When I did have time, I would be burnt out from work or supporting other musician and actor friends in shows and gigs I couldn't really afford to go to. It's as much about imposter syndrome, not feeling seen and feeling empty as it is a celebration of picking yourself up, getting off the night bus and making that leap back home to reset and allow yourself time to find your passion again.
How did growing up in Wales influence your music?
Caitlin: I have been constantly surrounded by music. My grandfather sings weekly in Pendyrus Male Voice Choir, my Grandmother also sings in a Rock Choir, my mother plays Cello, Piano and loves everything music has to offer. Wales is commonly referred to as the land of song too, so when you add that with my more eccentric musical upbringing (from my Gibraltarian side) with Bob Marley, Sting, Melon Diesel and Breed 77 - I have been spoiled. Having musical icons like Shirley Bassey, Tom Jones, Charlotte Church and the Stereophonics paving the Welsh Music scene, it makes sense to me to listen to all genres and to take interest in specifically Welsh artists. Lots of my favorite songs by these artists talk about shared experiences and themes. The beautiful landscape and people I have been brought up by have definitely impacted my creativity and it is therefore reflected in my songwriting.
What made you decide on the red theme in the photoshoot for this track?
Caitlin: Other than the obvious answer which is, London buses are red, I saw, heard and felt red when I was writing the single. Red is a very patriotic, Welsh colour, it symbolises our dragon, our flag and it also reminds me of a phone box whereby someone would call home. When I was struggling in London, all I wanted to do was go home, to turn the night bus in the direction of Wales etc. Red has always been a colour I have loved so it makes sense that it has ended up symbolising the single. In the music video I hope to incorporate the colour in contrast to the blue and stormy Welsh sea and dark green mountains. I think it works alongside the theme of the song and connects London and Wales visually and dramatically.
Who is one artist you would love to collaborate with? You can only pick one!
Caitlin: I would give my right arm to work with Florence Welsh (and the machine) mainly because I love her lyrics, sound and songwriting. She is unapologetically unique and although she wears her heart on her sleeve, she manages to maintain mystery in her music. I would also love the opportunity to work with Amy Wadge. I have followed her career for a long time now and it's so exciting to watch her write with so many up and coming musicians and brilliant artists.
What city would you love to perform in? Or a specific venue?
Caitlin: I would love to perform in Nashville or New Orleans. In terms of venues, Wembley, The Royal Albert Hall and Cardiff Castle are high up on a list of places I would love to perform in. Also, St Michaels Cave in Gibraltar would mean a lot to me and is an incredible music venue.
What is some of the best advice you have received?
Caitlin: My drumming teacher Mark used to say to me 'put can't in your pocket' whenever self doubt or laziness creeped into my head. He would also say that if I could do something 5 times, it'd stick (excuse the pun). Although simple, it stuck with me and it's a saying I regularly practice when music/acting become difficult or frustrating.
Interviewed By Kendall Koval