Maria Chabo and her SFP. Band do not allow themselves to be pigeonholed. They make music as they just feel like it. You write jazz, pop, rock songs – as you just feel like it. Because we are a rock magazine we talk with Maria about her pop – rock album, her influences and what influence the crisis has on her doing as a musician..
Hello Maria, how are you? How do you manage in the Corona crisis as an artist?.
Thank you so much for this opportunity to give an interview for Stalker Magazine! Yes, times are special, it’s true, and difficult not only for musicians but for society as a whole. While in the beginning it was possible to hang on, now I think a lot of people have really reached the end of their psychological and financial possibilities.
I am someone who always tries to see the positive in all situations. I think we all finally had time and peace to go inside ourselves and not chase the extreme acceleration of life. To understand that even if you suddenly do much less than usual, that even then nothing collapses, but life goes on. Just at a different pace.
Personally, I used the time to write. To write songs not according to a certain specification – like a pop or rock album, but to just let it flow. To let myself be surprised. Explore yourself and understand yourself better. The result is 3 albums that are now gradually being finished and released. They actually diverge stylistically, one is pop rock, which we are talking about today; the others are pop and pop jazz. The first two albums come out under the stage name SFP.BAND.
What I learned from that time – I like to produce, and not necessarily just in terms of one genre. However, my focus is pop music, so everything I produce ends up having a touch of pop music 🙂
You/you do a wild mix of pop, rock, jazz with other influences. How would you describe your music and who should definitely listen to your music?
The album we are talking about today is called “What does your love cost” and it is pop rock. The first two songs are already out as singles: Falling and Yearning, can be found on Spotify and all other music stores and YouTube.
It will be followed by another single release on April 21 “Open for Love” and on Aug. 21 the album complete. Who should listen to the album? Everyone who likes soft rock 🙂 But also those who like high quality produced music – on this album really good musicians worked together, who have been successful in the music business for many years. Drums are recorded by Stephan Emig, known from “The Voice”, a really outstanding drummer. Guitar Ingo Hassenstein, excellent guitarist with many own projects (also rock music projects). Til von Dombois, keyboard and programming, without him everything would have been much more difficult 🙂 Mario Ehrenberg-Kempf, bass player and my former teacher, someone who always supported me a lot on my musical way. Mikhail Bugaev, a musician trained in classical music, he’s in charge of recording the strings – and he’s doing it really terrific, even though it’s his first contact with pop music.
Tell and more about you. Who is Maria Chabo and what is your musical career ?
Who is Maria Chabo? 🙂 That’s an interesting question that I may not have an answer to myself 🙂 In my life I have learned one thing – never stand still. However, that means submitting to continuous change. I can say that at this point I am a singer and producer. If I’m lucky, it will stay that way until I’m old 🙂 but in the end, you never know what life has in store for you.
Musically, I’ve always had a passion for opera, though it wasn’t so much the music that fascinated me as the variety of human voices. That’s why it was natural for me to start taking lessons in classical singing.
Later, I graduated from a vocational school of music that focused on pop, rock and jazz, and it was there that I really realized for the first time that I wanted to produce my own music and sing my own songs. The school also gave me a good foundation for that.
That makes it perhaps understandable where I draw my creativity from – my musical path is shaped by classical music, jazz, salsa, pop, rock and jazz influences and the mix of these ends up making up the sound of my music.
Characteristic for all releases, genre independent, is in the end a dreamy, soft, emotional, maybe cinematic pop sound.
What does SFP as a band name stand for?
SFP stands for Sounds for People. On this name I came when I thought about how the label to my music could be called. So now there is SFPMUSIC as a label and SFP.BAND as the performer.
You would actually have an album ready, but you want to release the songs individually. Why do you do it that way and will be a complete album maybe at a later date?.
Yes, the entire album was actually finished and could have been released in one piece, but I decided against it. The main reason for me was that only when you release the singles you can give enough promotion to each song. You have the time and opportunity to shoot a video for each song and promote it, which with an album release is at most after the fact, if at all. I think it’s much more logical if the video is released with the song and not weeks or months later. On top of that, society is changing rapidly and nowadays you have to fight for every second of attention. It’s already hard to get people to listen to one song in its entirety. And the whole album? It seems utopian to me.
What do you want to achieve with your music? What are your plans for the future?
What do I want to achieve with my music? I remember as a teenager I used to listen to a favorite song for hours, especially when I wasn’t feeling well at the time. I think many people do that because they seek and find support in their favorite songs.
Since my songs revolve around a very universal theme, love – one of the most emotional themes of all, I hope to pass on to others with my songs this experience I have had myself – finding support in music. I think that would make me happy 🙂
You’ve lived in the Asian part of Russia, how did it come about? What did you do there and what experiences have you brought from there to Germany?
Yes, I’ve actually been around a bit in life, as the child of a “mixed” couple I spent my childhood in Kazakhstan, then my parents went to Germany and settled in Hanover. That’s why Hanover has become for me a place where I have always returned, even if I have lived many years in between somewhere else. E.g. in Berlin or for a little while in NY and Bermuda.
This traveling back and forth has certainly contributed a lot to who I am today and has strongly influenced my musical taste.
Living in another country brings the understanding of the respective culture, without which you can’t empathize with the people of the country and understand their longings. Understanding longings, however, is in my opinion exactly what an artist does with his music. He reveals people’s longings and puts them into music and words.
If you could live in any other place in the world, where would it be?.
What place would I most like to live? I like the Caribbean and Bermuda, and also Bali. But in the long run it might be too hot 🙂 I am open to what else my life brings. I’m sure there are a lot of places I don’t know yet. I let myself be surprised by life 🙂
Thank you very much for your time and all the best!
Thank you so much for this great opportunity to introduce us!
Maria and the Crew