Musical Discoveries: Please would you tell us more about your background prior to the release of Enough.
Claudia: I grew up in Budapest and my first serious encounter with music was when I enrolled at music school. I was seven and I started taking piano and music theory classes. I was also a child actor for several years and did musical theater. After high school, I studied classical voice at a conservatory and took some jazz piano classes as well. This is my first significant release as a singer, but I've been writing lyrics for other artists. [Editor's Note: The Cosmic Remedy is one example.]
Are there any other musical artists in your family?
Unfortunately, there aren't any musicians in my family, but my mom has a lovely singing voice.
Can you tell us about how you got involved with The Cosmic Remedy project and how your contributions to the project evolved.
I got to know Akos a few years ago when a mutual friend introduced us to each other. In 2012 he contacted me and asked me whether I was interested in writing some lyrics for him. I instantly said yes, because I was familiar with his previous work with Yesterdays, for example. I think the result is great, I'm glad I had the chance to work with him.
How did you develop your own vocal style and are there any other artists that particularly influenced you along the way?
I guess that I just went with my intuitions and let my style unfold naturally by itself. Artists are constantly influenced by each other - even on a subconscious level - plus the world we live in - the so called Zeitgeist - is also a major influence. Obviously, there are some great artists I really admire, but my most important influences root from classical music, mostly from the romantic, post-romantic era. I love Tchaikovsky, Rachmaninoff and Prokofiev.
Who else contributed to your album Enough and, in addition to singing the lead parts on all the songs, what else did you do on the album?
I also compose my music, so I took complete charge of the songwriting and the production. Some great Hungarian artists contributed to my album: Robert Ratonyi, Edina Mokus Szirtes, Balazs Bolyki, Andras Bolyki, Viktor Hars and two great vocalists from the a cappella group "Fool Moon," only to name a few.
Please elaborate more on the writing, recording and production of Enough.
The recording process started in September 2012 and it finished in March 2013. I had already chosen 80% of the songs I was about to record, the rest I composed along the way. I worked simultaneously on several songs. Once I had one outlined in my head, I contacted the artists I hoped to work with and then we had it done.
What can you tell our readers about the style of the music they will hear on Enough?
It's hard to put a label on it. I guess it's a mixture of pop, jazz and classical music with melody driven, somewhat bitter sweet songs. Some are monumental ballads like "Everything," while others are soft, gentle, acoustic pieces like "Together." I'm not sure I've got a favorite track; they all seem to have grown on me.
What can you tell our readers about your live performances and your on-stage persona?
My live performances are mostly acoustic. I either work with a pianist as a duo, or I accompany myself on the piano. Each and all of my concerts are dear to me for one reason or another. I don't think I could pick any as a standout.
My on-stage persona is not a particular act. It's pretty much about the songs and the feelings, I'm just channeling the music.
How important do you think image is to a female recording artist these days and what kinds of things do you do to manage your own image?
Image is so many things. It is the packaging of the product the artist that sells--your looks, the visual art behind your albums, videos, shows etc--and it is also your sound and the contents of your songs.
In a dense, globalized and fast changing market an artist needs to stand out. Many female artists put a great effort into the visuals of their project or the story that positions them in the market. Personally, I rather focus on the quality of my music and my message.
How do you use the internet and social media to promote your work these days?
To be honest, I'm a bit old fashioned when it comes to social media. I prefer interpersonal contact in the offline way. But then again, it's pretty wild how some stuff can get viral from one day to another, so it's undoubtedly a ground-breaking tool to get your music out there without geographical or other logistic constraints.
In addition to music, what else rocks your world these days?
I'm involved in many things. Medicine for instance. But that is a completely different story.
Is there anything else you'd like to tell our readers before we conclude this interview?
I think you've been quite thorough. Thank you very much for getting in touch with me. I appreciate the attention to my music.