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Interview

Q&A With Simply Anne

Image: Ilse Moore Photography

What inspired such a unique concept for your music video, Transcend?

I wanted a video that tells the story of my song above and beyond simply singing along with the lyrics of my song.
Water is imagery that I often use in my songwriting, and the theme of Transcend suited that theme so much. “when it rains it pours”, as I use the expression in my song, it’s almost as if it has rained so much that you are now completely underwater, water from which you need to transcend above. It is also because I wanted to do something different, I suppose, and I have worked with the Ilse Moore Studio before, and I knew it was something they could pull off successfully.

Being shot almost entirely underwater must have posed some interesting challenges. Did you have to go through any special preparation before filming began?

A few weeks before shooting I had to do a trial shoot where I had to practice looking natural underwater, and make it appear as though I am not holding my breath – you know the face people make when they hold their breath? Yeah I couldn’t look anything like that. I get quite anxious underwater, so I was also encouraged to practice deep breathing and then holding my breath underwater in the bath to get used to it.

We also had to rehearse the projector shots, because I had to be in a specific position so that both the projector and the camera would be in focus at the same time. Sean From the Ilse Moore studio also had to build a rig with which to attach me tightly and lower me down sideways for that tilt shot close to the end of the video.

You’ve described Transcend as “an inner monologue and a message of encouragement”. Would this be linked to personal experience, dealing with hardship? And how could a listener take this on as their own words, to themselves?

Yes, I had been battling with a long term lyme disease/tick bite fever which caused many problems until it was diagnosed correctly recently, until then, I was faced with potentially losing everything and had to dig very deep to find the courage to keep fighting. I had also lost a good friend to a crime which made me realise how short and uncertain life is even for the people who are living their best lives. But everyone goes through something in their life at some point which completely changes them, those were mine, and the song is written in a way that is relatable to anyone who has gone through or who may be going through their own battle – that life-changing battle. sometimes though, hindsight is 20/20, so you’ll have to look back to realise that “you need rain for flowers to grow”. No one can tell you that when you are in the middle of the storm, it feels invalidating, but it’s something you can tell yourself to keep fighting and keep you head up.

Given the global issues of politics, and the current pandemic. Do you feel such a monologue with one’s self is something you’d encourage us all to do? An escape, of some introspection, through music and lyrics?

Definitely, many people are currently in a battle of sorts, and I want to encourage people to allow good things to come from the hardships they are in, because it is possible.

Water can be both a giver of life, sustaining us, or it can be a dangerous companion, taking life. Did you create Transcend with much symbolism in mind?

I did. A rainstorm can be scary, it can cause a flood, you can drown in a body of water, but you also need rain for growth to occur. In Transcend, the idea is that it has “rained and poured” so much that you are now underwater. And you’ll notice that the water never really goes away in the video, but at the end of the video, the character I’m playing is dancing in the rain in real life, but her inner warrior is dancing under water too, because this time she’s stronger.

Image: Ilse Moore Photography

Any advice for those entering the music industry?

Diversify your skills, because you will need to wear many hats as a musician, and also because it’s important to have multiple streams of income within your craft. Other than that, be authentic and always strive to improve your craft.

Can you share a bit of what is next for you?

I have some live shows trickling in again, which you can find out more about if you follow my instagram page and Facebook page. I am also working on an album which will be released in the next year.

Read more about Transcend

By Andrew Germishuys

Founder of SAMDB, Andrew has worked full time in the film industry since the early 2000's. He has trained as an actor, completing his LAMDA Gold Medal, and attending many courses in Cape Town acting studios, with masterclasses with some of the international industries top directors, producers and filmmakers.

Working as an actor and armourer in the film and television industry have given Andrew a great balance of skills across the board when it comes to the entertainment industry.

Catch him on Twitter: twitter.com/andrewgerm_za
And IMDb: www.imdb.com/name/nm5390453/