July 25, 2021

Lau: the drummer who, from London, made her way solo

At the edge of the convulsed 2000, she was still Laura Fares (43) and felt that she was surviving, rather than living, while working nine hours in a printing company to pay for her university studies. And like many Argentines at that time, he did not hesitate when he had the opportunity to emigrate looking for new opportunities. To her surprise, London welcomed her with open arms. In that cosmopolitan and gray city she spent the last twenty years, enough time to train musically and become an outstanding session drummer and composer who, in addition to playing for greats like Ricky Martin or Taio Cruz, managed to found her own record label, Aztec Records. But the comfort began to bother her and the frustration of a romantic relationship pushed her to take on new personal and professional challenges now like Lau, the stage name she adopted in this, her solo career, in which she embraces eighties sounds with which she proposes a nostalgic sound trip to the past.

“There were many years playing and composing for other artists, and I felt very comfortable in that role. I think that without knowing it, I was a little afraid to put myself in front, to expose myself and show me how I am. But last year, with a pandemic involved, and after a separation with my long-time partner, many things moved, there were many changes, and it seemed like the ideal moment to compose and reencounter myself, ”she assured in dialogue with EL DIA the Argentine who, as a drummer, worked for artists such as Sam Sparro, Ricky Martin, Taio Cruz and Big Black Delta, and who as a songwriter wrote most of the best-selling albums of NINA, Synthian, Sleepwalking and Control .

“I learned a lot from all the artists I played with, the professionalism, the way to work, how to control my nerves in great presentations, how to put on a good show. I think I have already put aside the fear of going to the front, and of leaving my comfort zone and I am enjoying this new stage a lot, “said Lau, from Barcelona, ​​where she has been based since last year, after having put a brooch of gold to his London adventure.

This new stage began with “Believer”, a debut material that, according to the sound universe that it explores -among retrowave, synthpop and even synthwave-, not only released on CD but also on vinyl and cassette. In this album, Lau tells us, through beautiful and heartfelt songs, about how hard and at the same time necessary that the end of a relationship can be, putting his own personal history in the foreground, something that he experienced as a liberation.

“Age, look, sexual orientation are no longer important. The only thing that matters is the music you make and being honest with yourself “

“At first I was very afraid to open up, to show what I felt, to show my voice and see how the public would react. It is not easy to expose your feelings publicly, you feel a bit vulnerable, but many people connected with the album and that makes me very happy. I think the honesty of the lyrics is what resonated a lot with people. We all suffer in life sometimes, and we shouldn’t be ashamed to say it out loud, ”he admitted.

“Believer” is the literal translation of “Believer” and, in this sense, Lau acknowledged that she had a hard time believing in herself. “For many years it was difficult for me to call myself a ‘singer’. I always sang, but from a more secondary role, or to compose. I was always a drummer, a DJ, a producer. But calling me a ‘singer’ always cost me, I think because of my insecurities, “he said.

In this sense, she revealed that seeing other similar artists, such as LP, helped her to take a clean and jerk and take that step. “Age, look, sexual orientation are no longer important today, and the public is supporting that change. The only thing that matters is the music you make, and that you are honest with yourself ”, she remarked.

As a session drummer he recorded and toured with greats like Ricky Martin or Taio Cruz / Instagram

YOUR BEGINNINGS WITH MUSIC

Lau began to be interested in music as a child and listening to great classics such as Tina Turner or Phil Collins. “I grew up listening to the greats of pop music of the eighties, and that influenced me a lot in the music I make today,” he said about the style he chose to embrace and that offers a nostalgic feeling that he loves.

But it was not until his adolescence when he began to see music with different eyes. “When I was 17 years old, with some friends from school we put together a rock band and I chose the drums. I was fascinated with that instrument and the truth is that there weren’t many female drummers back then. Only once did I see a girl drummer at a show and it shocked me so much that I said ‘I want to play like this’. And I was shaping my life so that music is always my goal. And from then on I didn’t stop ”, he recalled.

Regarding its nostalgic sound, the first material of lau was released on disc, vinyl and cassette

Exercising an instrument traditionally associated with men has caused her the odd derogatory comment but, luckily for her, it never became older. He celebrated, in this sense, how feminism shook the hornet’s nest in his favor.

“At last there is more visibility with the whole issue of harassment in professional situations. It seems to me that a great step has been taken in this regard. I have not suffered harassment at a professional level, but there have been macho comments in my career, and ‘surprise’ when they saw that a woman could play the drums well or talk technical things with the sound engineer. That happened to me a lot on tour. It’s like I had to constantly value my profession. I always had roles that were not common for women: drummer, DJ, producer. So I think that little by little I got used to that reaction. Now (20 years later), luckily the situation is very different ”.

Lau left the country in 1999, “after a difficult economic crisis that my family was going through, like many other Argentines.” At night he studied Graphic Design at the UBA. During the day, he worked in a printing company, “but he felt that it was impossible to survive, the economic situation was increasingly difficult.” And so he decided to go out and find a better life.

“The truth is that at that moment London welcomed me with open arms. Being such a cosmopolitan city, I felt very comfortable as a foreigner and I felt that they were very open and did not judge anyone ”, Lau explained.

Close to Buckingham Palace, he was able to study music, go on a world tour, found his record label, Aztec Records, with his friend Ariel Amejeiras, as well as playing and composing for great artists.

“It was a leap into the void but I always followed what my heart dictated, and luckily everything went well for me,” he stressed, rehearsing a quick analysis of what was his London residence.

Now, Lau’s life unfolds in Barcelona, ​​”a beautiful city, with lots of nature, beach, mountains, palm trees”, where he has also been welcomed. “It was a necessary change. I felt that it was time to look for a new place that inspires me, and to leave behind certain memories that no longer did me good. While I still have a very close connection to London, I feel like I already did what I had to do and achieved what I wanted to achieve there. This is a new chapter and I am really very happy, ”she admitted.

And while he waits for the COVID-19 pandemic to dissipate, with which he can tour hand in hand with his music through different countries of the world, including his native Argentina, which he has not visited for a year and a half, he continues to create. .

After his debut album, which can be heard on digital platforms, he released, together with British producer Zak Vortex, a version of Cyndi Lauper’s classic “True Colors”, which he dyed with melancholy and its characteristic sounds. It is one of his “favorite songs of all time” and in which he found the best way to honor the LGBTQI community, which tomorrow celebrates International Pride Day, something in which Lauper is a great reference and that, Lau said, “it makes me admire her even more.”

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