Marie Claire Giraud ” I sang before I spoke”

Can you share your musical journey with us, from when you first discovered your passion for music to where you are today as an independent musician?

I would say that my passion started from birth , I sang before I spoke so I thought everyone could sing till I discovered that everyone could not sing while auditioning for my school choir.
Today I stand as one who works hard and through my hard work has the honor of living my dreams, performing The Great American Songbook, singing opera, acting in plays and in movies and being a full creative force.

What motivates you to create music, and how do you stay inspired to continue making new and unique music?

New York City inspires me, people ask me all the time, ‘ Marie-Claire are you in a relationship and I respond yes with New York City’.
Where else can you be anything, do anything put in the work and your dreams are yours to be lived.

As an independent musician, you wear many hats – from composing to marketing. How do you balance these different aspects of your career, and what challenges do you face in the process?

As a singer of genres and a songwriter I find I have to compartmentalize, plan my day which consists of time management and making lists that I then check off when tasks are completed.
From visiting venues, sending out emails to club owners, managers and bookers, following up, once the gig is booked making the set list or lists, organizing rehearsals with the band, in communication with the club regarding my theme (lighting, music before and after the gig), promotion (the venues and my own which will include email blasts, personal emails, text messages and all platforms on social media) .

Could you tell us about your creative process? How do you come up with new ideas for songs, and how do you go about turning those ideas into finished tracks?

My creative process varies, I can a song in my head and sometimes start with a melody, or the lyrics can come first, or I can be listening to a track or an instrumental piece of music and can get an idea from there so it really just depends on where my mind at any given time. But I would say the running theme to my process is to be open and fluid to the muses .

Independent musicians often face financial challenges. How do you manage your finances to sustain your music career while also covering your personal expenses?

I take from Peter to pay Paul which is basically how I manage and it usually always works out because at the end of the day I have faith in my gifts, my talents and the continuous work I put in.

Can you share a particularly memorable or challenging experience from your journey as a musician that has had a significant impact on your career and personal growth?

Whenever I sing in another city, state or country I reach out to children’s homes, basically anywhere children are disenfranchised and I tell them my story of overcoming, thriving and achieving. I believe it not only helps but motivates children and young people when they see someone who likes them and have achieved success despite everything. When I connect with them I can see the spark in their eyes and the change of tone in their voices, sharing helps and I will continue to do so.

With the rise of digital platforms, the music industry has changed significantly. How do you navigate the digital landscape, including streaming services and social media, to promote your music and connect with your audience?

Thank the maker for my manager Ana Gibert who has over the years coached me on self taping, perception and lighting. Yes it’s tedious navigating the world we live in which is dominated by social platforms but once one gets the hang of it it becomes easier and can be fun when you make it your own.

Collaboration is a key part of the music industry. Have you worked with other musicians or producers, and how have these collaborations influenced your sound and career?

I have collaborated with Spragga Benz on a opera/dancehall version of Bob Marley’s, Rastaman Chant and John Harbison on a four song cycle where he wrote the music and I wrote the lyrics and melody.
Both of these collaborations though vastly different have fueled my creativity and no matter the genre I can express myself within it.

Your music likely reflects your unique style and perspective. Could you describe your musical identity and what makes your sound stand out in a crowded industry?

What role does live performance play in your music career, and how do you approach planning and executing your live shows, especially in light of recent challenges like the COVID-19 pandemic?

I believe in staying authentic and speaking one truths, “ build it and they will come “, I believe in being like water, flowing no matter how still the surface there is constant movement, change and within that a calm.

Performing live is everything, I love connecting with my audience and sharing the fantasy that I bring. Because of COVID we have experienced extreme hardships so when people come to see me I want to give them something very special from what I am wearing to the songs I select, really give them an experience they will remember.

Many fans are interested in the stories behind the songs. Could you share the backstory or inspiration behind one of your recent tracks that holds special meaning to you?

CHASIN’ RAINBOWS is a song about never ever ever ever EVER giving up on your dreams no matter what because of course there will be storms, trails and tribulations but after the storm there is always a rainbow. So never give up.

Looking ahead, what are your future goals and aspirations as an independent musician? Are there any upcoming projects or exciting developments in your career that you’d like to share with your fans and the audience?

I will be recording my jazz album which will include original songs and standards and recording my opera EP this summer in addition to performing live, I have recently signed with a booking agency for both genres of Jazz and Opera so I am excited for the future and what it holds. Follow your bliss.