Billy Joel stated that, “music in itself is healing”. Whether it is through creating music to express our experiences and emotions, or listening to music to feel understood, music provides us a sense of comfort throughout any human experience we may endure. Songwriter and producer Dezabel’s new single “Tattooed” is a musical haven for anyone who has experienced grief. This song is emotional yet triumphant and delicately laces hopeful lyrics with beautiful instrumentation.
“My father passed away in August 2017. It was a shock, as this happened very surprisingly. Losing him left a big gap in my life. I tried to cope with the grief by writing a song for him, but I was so self-critical that I never felt it was ready to be released. Sadly, my mother died in March this year. Although we had a very strong relationship, it wasn’t such a shock. After my dad’s death I spent a lot of time with her. So, many unspoken words were told over time. This is the key message of my song “Tattooed”. Grief is stronger if one feels that many questions weren’t asked or words unspoken until it is too late.”
Although losing someone you love is one of the hardest things we can go through, Dezabel speaks about how he wishes that “Tattooed” will provide listeners with hope instead of grief.
As the lyrics say, "lost clouds, they wander, they fade, but memories stay".
Siahna: What was your process like when you wrote this song? Did the instrumentation come first or the lyrics?
Dezabel: “In this case I had a movie in my head. So, I wrote the lyrics (more like a framework) first and then I wrote the score of the movie. Finding the right words in such a situation was pretty difficult for me without sounding sorry for myself. It was hard for me to write about the loss of my parents without expressing those feelings, so I tried hard to make sure the message shines through the lyrics.”
Siahna: Who is the singer? How did you find this artist and decide that they were the right fit for this song?
Dezabel: “Her name is Jazelle Rodriguez. Fellow students gave me a few names that they felt would be a good match for my music. I listened to what she published so far and fell in love with her voice immediately. She's great and a very collaborative artist. I hope I can continue to work with her, since she's able to transport my emotions to the stage.”
Siahna: What is the biggest challenge for you when it comes to creating a new song? Do you think that lyrics or the instrumentation comes easier to you?
Dezabel: “For me it's not the lyrics, nor the music that I feel challenged with. It's the combination. Let me explain: today's music often is very interchangeable, so that the story has become subordinated. What I mean is you can change the theme of the story and keep the arrangement as is. For me the key is the groove and emotion. Obviously I'm kind of old fashioned, lol.”
Although challenging, Dezabel skillfully perfected this combination. The story of “Tattooed” can easily resonate with any listener and the lyrics are anything but interchangeable. Music in itself is healing and “Tattooed” is a beautiful example of how this remains true.
Listen to “Tattooed” here