Tell us your real names and country of birth.
Sara Shields-Rivard, Canada.
Tell us your academic qualification.
Studying music in university, specializing in classical/ contemporary voice.
Tell us about your music career, band name, musical background, experience and skills.
I have been in multiple bands over the years, such as Northern Coda, but have finally decided to do my own thing. I currently sing backup for Edwin Raphael and Colin Weeks and have worked on music with NOVA and Pat di Meo. My stage name Artemisia was inspired by one of my favorite female painters of the 16th-17th century, named Artemisia Gentileschi. Her art has not only inspired me, through her unique representation of women at the time, but also through her life story.
Tell us about your genre, concept and idea behind your music video and the song.
I write mostly indie/pop/R&B music about queer love, with musical influences such as Florence & The Machine, Amy Winehouse, Charlotte Cardin, etc.
Tell us how to run a record label independently and successfully based on your experience as an artist.
I think getting good artists and musicians to collaborate and network is important to running an indie music label, as much as social media, promoting, and marketing.
Tell us how you are promoting your music.
I am promoting my music through Instagram, Facebook, as well as through various music blogs. I play live shows around Montreal as well and plan on selling merch soon.
Tell us what makes you happy and what makes you sad.
Love makes me happy, but it can also make me just as sad. Whether it’s self-love, love from your family, your partner, or even your cat.
Explain clearly the story or concept behind the song.
“Girl” is a coming of age story about exploring sexuality and, when I, personally, understood that I didn’t need a man to be happy or complete.
List the radio stations, TV stations and blogs that have aired or featured your new song.
Smoke Radio (London), so far.
Give us links to where the song can be purchased.
Tell us about other members of your band, music producer, crew, or music video director, how the song was recorded, and how the music video was shot.
I worked with Andreas Koliakoudakis at Kingsway Studios in Montreal to record, mix, master, and produce this song. Initially, I wrote it just at the piano with lots of backup vocals and with the intention of adding strings, but he also suggested adding bass, drum, and guitar to it, which took the song in a completely different direction. I’ve known him for a long time and he knows what I like and what I don’t, what I’m good at and what I’m not, etc. I trust him entirely and he always does an amazing job at bringing me to my fullest potential.
Tell us how long you have been in the music industry, your experience and your future goal.
I have been studying music since I was little, but only decided to make my own music seriously this year and take complete creative control of my musical output. My goal is to make music that makes people jam out to, but also chill and make them feel things. I love songwriting, recording, and vocal arranging and would love to work in the music industry for the rest of my life, whether it is in a studio, behind the scenes, or on stage.
Tell us what makes you unique from others.
What makes me unique is the kind of sounds that I blend together in my music. I’ve asked people how they would define my music, and no one could come up with anything. I love orchestral sounds and epic drums, but also pop and rock music. I think the fact that I’m a little over the map sonically makes my music different. I also talk about my queer relationships, which you don’t hear very often.
Tell us your weakness and strength pertaining music.
My weakness is my solo performance anxiety for sure, and my strength is creating vocal harmonies.
List your five favourite songs including the artists.
Currently, my favourite songs are:
“Rhiannon” – Fleetwood Mac / Stevie Nicks,
“Heartbreaker” – Pat Benatar,
“Make Me Feel” – Janelle Monae,
“IDGAF” – Dua Lipa,
“Bellyache” – Billie Eilish.
Tell us your position on “DIY” Do It Yourself” and signing to a major label.
I think there’s advantage to both a DIY approach and signing to a label. There’s a lot more pressure to create content that will sell when you’re with a label, but they also market you and get you exposure, which is crucial to a career in music, whereas you have a lot more creative freedom as an independent artist. Personally, I like being an indie artist because I can explore so many different musical avenues without any pressure or expectations, but I think one day, I might be ready to move up and sign to a label.
Tell us other activities you will like to pursue apart from music.
I am currently studying Art History and enjoy multimedia art, sound art and collaging. I also write poems in my spare time. I’d like to find a way that they can intersect and to do all of them in one space.
List your various works.
“Girl” – Artemisia,
“Something Like Us” – Artemisia,
“Untempered” – Northern Coda,
“Miss the Sun” – Edwin Raphael,
“Kodak” – Edwin Raphael.
State links to connect you on social media.
State your artist’s name and elaborate on it.
Artemisia; inspired by the 17th century Italian painter.
State the title of the song and the meaning.
“Girl”. The song is about queer love and realizing you don’t have to be in love with just one kind of person. Sexuality is fluid!
State the title of the album and the reason for picking the title.
The EP will be self-titled, because it is a debut EP. I want people to know who I am, what I’m about, and what I’ve gone through (self-discovery, long-distance relationship, breakup, sexual assault, etc.), and this EP says it all.