INTERVIEW: Oakland Singer/Songwriter Safia Mafia

Hi Safia, welcome to VENTS! How have you been?

Thank you, thank you having me! I’m doing great, and I just released my first full-length album Love Kills!

Can you talk to us more about your latest single “Weed & Wine”?

“Weed & Wine” is a light-hearted depiction of an “it’s complicated” relationship. You know the fire’s hot, but you touch it anyway.

Did any event in particular inspire you to write this song?

I was inspired to write “Weed & Wine” by actual events. I was broken up at the time and… my ex turned into my “it’s complicated.” Then I wrote a song about it.

How was the filming process and experience behind the video?

The video was a riot! Super fun. Most of the kids in the video were folks I know and kick it with in real life, so it was like a house party that was caught on tape. Shooting with Guapdad 4000 was super fun too. His energy is palpable. He’s hilarious and has a natural charm, which fit perfectly with what we were trying to portray in the visual.

The single comes off your new album Love Kills – would you call this a conceptual record?

Love Kills is absolutely a conceptual album. The story behind the title is layered. Love Kills initially came to me as a song before I finished the album or even had a concept for it. The song is about wanting to love honestly and being fatigued by the idea of pretending to feel any differently. Once the album was nearing completion I started to notice a story developing that unified all the songs. The story was my journey through the different dimensions of love from loving someone wholeheartedly to me loving myself wholeheartedly.

What’s the story behind the title?

When it came time to pick a name I chose Love Kills because it addresses the spectrum of love. On the positive end of the love spectrum, love kills the negative. On the negative end, love kills the positivity in your life. My journey has included both ends and I now find myself in the middle of the love spectrum, which is rooted in self-love.

How was the recording and writing process?

The writing and recording process was actually easier than I’m used to! I’ve been doing a lot of self-work, which is making it easier to write more honesty and openly than before. I had a story to tell and I told it without shame.

What was it like to work with Bedrock and how did that relationship develop?

I love working with Bedrock! We’ve known each other since before we each moved to LA years ago, so we know each other well. He’s my best friend so we work very well with each other. He knows my sound, what kind of music I like, and he knows how to pull magic out of me.

How much did he get to influence the album?

He produced or co-produced every song on the album, so his influence is all over Love Kills!

Do you tend to take a different approach when you are collaborating with someone else rather than in your own?

Thereʼs definitely a different approach I have to take when working with others because everyone has their own process. Iʼve found that if I take my time with folks and observe the energy in the beginning of the session, I can more easily navigate how to approach.

How Kings of Leon and Jimmy Eat World has influence your writing?

Kings of Leon was in heavy rotation when I first moved to LA. I really vibes with the lyrics and the honesty in his vocal performance. I donʼt feel like Jimmy eat world has influenced me

What role does Oakland play in your music?

Oakland is the backdrop to everything I do because Oakland raised me. So much of my story is rooted there so it has and will always influence my creativity

What aspect of love did you get to explore on this record?

All aspects of love are present in this album. The good, the bad, the ugly, and everything in between!

Where else did you find the inspiration for the songs and lyrics?

I pulled inspiration from my story. These songs are all rooted in real life experiences.

Any plans to hit the road?

I would love to hit the road! No set plans just yet, but definitely want to tour.

What else is happening next in Safia Mafia’s world?

Really want to push this album hard and give her a chance to live and thrive. Performances are definitely down the pipeline. Promo. Iʼm in the editing process for my music video for “Drive” which will be dropping soon. Just getting out there and letting people know Iʼm here!

Watch here

Connect with Safia Mafia:




About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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