Measure - Laura DiStasi / by E

See what Measure's Laura DiStasi had to say about her sound and her music being featured by Taylor Swift.

How did you get interested in music?

Laura DiStasi: I guess I've always been interested. I've been writing and playing since I was sixteen and I'm thirty-four now [laughs] so it's been many, many years since being interested and pursuing music and writing and growing as a writer, as an artist.

Were there artists you took inspiration from?

I guess that's evolved through the years. I think there's always artists I'm taking inspiration from, you know, probably starting out in the '90s listening to artists like Fiona Apple and Sarah McLachlan and Green Day and Counting Crows and just really excellent songwriters during that era, there were so many during that era. I think Measure was probably influenced in the beginning by artists like Death Cab, Imogen Heap, and just artists that were doing kind of the electro-pop thing. The Cardigans, Stars definitely. I think I've always been interested in songwriting so just interested in a very wide mix of artists, paying attention to the lyrics and the song content.

How would you describe your sound, either as Measure or your solo work?

Measure is, I think, more produced than my solo work. Measure has also evolved, it started out as a collaboration between myself and David Little who's a producer and we would do really electronic pop music with electronic beats but Measure evolved to have more of a full band through the years. Then it was a mix between indie pop and electronic music - it's so hard to describe your musical sound. I would say maybe it falls under indie pop, as far as Measure is concerned. My music, solo stuff, tends to be a little more stripped down and more organic, minimal production, and I kind of like doing two projects that are so different.

Right now, is your focus more on Measure or your solo work?

Well, I have to be honest that my focus right now isn't really on music. I kind of am taking a little bit of a break aside from just really some behind the scene work to get the music I've released into some TV shows and stuff. I've really been focused on going back to school and I'm a new mom. I'm just taking a little break from music to explore some of my other passions and pursue them.

What was your reaction to hearing Taylor Swift had added your song to her breakup playlist?

[Laughs] It was kind of insane. Because of just her celebrity status and her musical accomplishments, imagining her sitting at home listening to "Begin Again" and feeling connected to the song was kind of awesome and to know that she would want to share it with someone who needed some support, that is awesome. Very cool. I think it's a little validating for a smaller artist, in terms of success, just to know that and just, I'm kind of running with it and for it being shared in so many places, I'm grateful for the new ears that will be hearing our music.

If you were making a playlist which of her songs would you choose to add?

Ooh, that's a tough one [laughs]. Which of her songs? Oh, this is a little embarrassing because I don't know her catalog too well, but I will admit that "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together" has been going over and over in my head since her playlist. I mean, I admire her songwriting, I just took a listen to her new video as well and she's very cool. Maybe "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together"; it's very decisive and I appreciate that.

What was the inspiration behind "Begin Again"?

I think I just, and this is particularly relevant to me right now because this is a song that's meaning has evolved for me and will probably continue to, but just not being afraid of chance and just kind of, when something ends, you can decide to move forward and do something different and it can be better; I think that kind of message is always relevant for people. At the time, I was moving from one city to another and was experiencing the end of a relationship and that was what it meant for me then and, you know, now I see it as kind of that you can change your whole life and you don't need to be afraid to do that. You don't have to pigeonhole yourself into being one thing, you can be many things, many new things.

What do you want people to know about your music?

Music for me has always been about just reaching people and, hopefully, whether it's an upbeat song or a not so upbeat song, people find truth in it and I've always expressed myself very honestly in my music and it seems a safe place, to me, to be vulnerable and emotionally honest, whether upbeat or not. So, I just hope people will connect with it. I guess, in this instance where the song got to be a support for somebody who needed it is wonderful; it's always wonderful to know when it's there for somebody that the song touched them when they needed it. For anybody, that's maybe what music is all about.

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