INTERVIEW: Abigail Ory

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

I’ve been well. I’ve been working so hard on my materials for my upcoming releases.

Can you talk to us more about your latest single “Waves”?

Sure! Waves was a song I wrote when I was 14, the beginning of my sophomore year of high school. Even though I wrote it so long ago, it has always stuck with me, and I’ve tweaked it over the years. Before I recorded Waves, I did a major re-write with my mentor Donna Lewis. It was the first song we worked on together, and also the song that introduced me to producer David Baron and to the world of studio recording. It was also one of the first original songs that I sang live.

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

I was asked to write this song for a dance production based on a book (“The Invention of Morel” by Adolfo Bioy Casares). However, as a very existential teenager, I was already thinking about the fleeting nature of relationships and life and all that.

Any plans to release any sort of video for the track?

Yes! I am in the process of producing a predominantly animated music video with my co-creator, animator Arturo González Barrios. Excitingly, a progress shot of the video was included in a video about him published by the Secretary of Culture of Tampico, Mexico. The live action part of this video is especially fused into my brain right now because I had to stand in the cold Maine ocean early in the morning several days in a row. We shot this a few weeks ago, and I’m still thawing out.

How was the recording and writing process?

The writing process was two phases: One when I wrote for the dance show, and one when I revised it. Revising the piece was a fascinating process. I’d hardly ever co-written a song before (never mind gotten critiques from an established artist), so it was a very vulnerable experience for me. The recording process was crazy– recording Waves was my first full day in the studio, and it’s something I’ll never forget.

How did you come up with the concept for what you call “weird pop”?

I had been searching for an artistic direction & identity for a while when I began recording. People would always ask me what kind of music, exactly, I played. David Baron and I even had trouble finding a genre to describe what we were making as we sat in the studio. I kept revisiting an artist called Sloppy Jane throughout this search, and I read an article about frontwoman Haley Dahl where she was referred to as the “Queen of Weird Punk.” I thought, that’s cool. I’m not exactly punk but I’m definitely weird– what if there was such thing as “weird pop”? That is a perfect descriptor for me, so it’s what I decided to call my music, and people seem to get the concept.

How did “The Invention of Morel” influence the writing on this song?

Mainly I wrote this as a song to accompany a scene in the dance production which was inspired by this book. In the dance scene Morel discovers the woman he is in love with is essentially just a hologram as he spends time with her on the beach (though I think in the book this doesn’t happen quite the same way). It was inspired by our fleeting perceptions of reality and how different circumstances can drastically change our view of a person.

What role does Boston play in your music?

I’ve been inspired by the New England landscape, the seasons, and the folk culture here for a long time. I am inspired by places I’ve been and the places my family is from (including the deep south), but having grown up in Massachusetts definitely influences the imagery that accompanies my music – from the farmlands you can see in the Doomsday video, to the barn in my All I Want for Christmas is Emotional Stability video, to the cold Maine ocean featured in the upcoming Waves visuals. My dry sense of humor is definitely Bostonian, and that permeates so much of my writing.

Does the new single mean we can expect a new material – how’s that coming along? Any tentative release date or title in mind?

Glad you asked! Yes! I have an EP coming out later this summer, tentatively titled Don’t Mind Me. The songs are done (THANKFULLY), and I just wrapped (socially distanced) shooting on the video that will accompany the release. There will also be a music video for Waves released later this month (July).

Any plans to hit the road?

COVID-19 makes that particularly hard right now, but the goal is to build my fanbase through music and videos who would want to see me live. I’ve got my fingers crossed!

What else is happening next in Abigail Ory’s world?

Sleeping. For the next 24 hours. After that? Back to work on music, and rolling with the punches as they come. I’m pondering a visit to Los Angeles in the next 6 to 12 months, but we’ll see how that goes. I’m also hoping to find to time to revisit painting. Maybe there’ll be a painted album cover coming up, who knows.

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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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