Alasdair Lambart interviews dance legend Luciana, famous for her successful featured-vocal tracks, about going solo once again with her epic new single ‘I’m Still Hot’
While dance music is often regarded as more ‘disposable’ than other genres of pop music, in recent years one lady has returned time and time again to great success with her spunky, punky vocals – Luciana. Ms Caporaso has featured on so many successful dance anthems, such as ‘Yeah Yeah’ and ‘What Planet You On?’ with Bodyrox, that she had to plonk them all together on a bestselling album in 2008. And now she’s back! And although this time she’s going it solo for the first time in years with her new single ‘I’m Still Hot’, as she tells So So Gay, she’s left none of her trademark attitude behind…
SSG: Hello Luciana. What important thing have you been dragged away from to answer So So Gay‘s annoying questions?
Luciana: I’m doing a Violent Lips photoshoot. I’m just chilling, getting my foundation done.
Dance music finally seems unstoppable; the charts are full of it. Did you ever anticipate what you do best becoming as mainstream and trendy as it is right now?
I never anticipate anything, I just try and be in the moment as much as possible. If you can see the bandwagon, it’s already left! I never thought that dance would ever become mainstream, no, so it’s an amazing opportunity to get my music heard and for America to dance their arses off!
But you’re not at all worried that you’ll wake up tomorrow and all Radio 1 will be playing is Bhangra-influenced ballads because that’s suddenly in vogue?[Laughs] I don’t worry too much about what is in vogue; whats important is really whether I like something. Whatever your passion is, I love lots of different types of music. I mean I am a punk indie girl singing over dance tracks right? I guess one day I will be the height of all things unfashionable, but I will enjoy that just as much!
What did you want to be when you grew up?
A lollipop lady! You got sweets as thanks, so I always thought that must be a great job!
How did you end up becoming ‘That woman wot features on lots of genius dance songs we’ve heard when slightly worse for wear’?
Well, I never meant to get hooked. I thought, just one little featured vocal, and then it was two and before I knew it I was all over the place. You do one track, then one thing leads to another and before you know it…
Nowadays you live quite the transatlantic lifestyle; here in the UK one minute and off in LA the next. What’s your favourite and least favourite thing about each?
I hate the blanket of grey with our London skies; it’s like a white, heavy stuffed blanket squashing you like an old pillow. But then it has such a vibe, a mixture of cultures and styles; you can’t beat that. LA has the sunshine, but you can’t walk anywhere; everywhere is a car ride and I miss the hustle and bustle of small crazy streets.
You’re most famous for your many brilliant collaborations with different producers and artists – which is your favourite?
I think my favourite is my first big breakthrough with Bodyrox, ‘Yeah Yeah’ – that was three years ago and it still resonates now with people when I perform as much as it did then… ‘I can teach you a think or two!’
Do you see yourself returning to recording solo material like your first album or steaming ahead with featuring with other people?
I would love to. I have been working on my solo material here in LA for some time, but it’s a windy road and there are so many distractions and so many great people to work with. My first solo single in ages, ‘I’m Still Hot’ is just out now though!
What was it like writing for Kylie Minogue’s last album (the track ‘Cupid Boy’)? Did you feel under pressure?
I love Kylie and I always wanted to write a song for her. When we got the instrumental track from the Swedish House Mafia we all knew it was special straightaway. We tried to have fun and picture her performing it and that’s how the song came about; what would Kylie do on stage. I love this song so much and am so proud of it. It was so great to see her open her set with it in Pacha, Ibiza; a very special moment for me. I cried!
Aside from the epic ‘Cupid Boy’, which ended up on the album, how many other tracks did you record and what did they sound like?
Around four or five. They were a little sweeter and probably more what you would expect from her. Who knows? They might still come out one day…
Have you nabbed them back for yourself from the clutches of Parlophone?
Nah, they are floating in the songwriting ether and I am preparing to make a sneak attack when no one is looking and find a new release for them. I think of songs as my babies and I get very protective over them. They may not always get immediate releases but I never let a good one slip away; it’s just finding the right moment for them.
Who’s on your collaboration wish-list?
Basement Jaxx, please!
So, the new album. How close to being finished is it? Describe the sound of it to us.
Well it’s me doing my thing with electro beats. More singing here and there than some people are used to – I started this life as an alternative indie artist! Different beats and different shades of me. It’s something you can sing along to and dance to when you are getting ready to go out, when you at the club and when you come home.
When can we first expect to hear stuff from it?
Early June in the US. If you are in Australia, possibly sooner. We’re figuring it all out now. It’s an exciting time!