When I first heard Vita Jazz live, I was mesmerised from head to toe. Her deep husky voice and that strong feminine power sparkling from her on stage was something I hadn’t witnessed in a while. Naturally, I was drawn to the story behind Vita’s EP ‘Complete’ and her inspirations.

Vita studies BA (Hons) Popular Music Performance at Southampton Solent University.

Watch: Four key things about Vita Jazz

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How did you get into jazz?

I’ve always been fascinated by jazz music, and I’ve dreamed of becoming a professional jazz singer. Especially, when everyone was telling me that my voice sounded so deep and jazzy and that I was good at improvising. Although, I was only singing what I really felt in my heart. I think that’s why people recognise me as a jazz singer. I was also named Vita Jazz at one of my performances, because I couldn’t stop singing for three hours when I started to improvise. However, I haven’t actually become a jazz artist, not yet, maybe because of the pressure of being the best scared me the most.

I was named Vita Jazz at one of my performances, because I couldn’t stop singing for three hours when I started to improvise.

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I considered studying jazz when I was 18 years old, but I realised how strict education and environment can be. The competition is enormous. I am not a perfectionist. I would describe myself as a free soul wandering in music.

Besides jazz, I love rock, pop, funk, blues, electronic music and especially the possibility of creating something completely new.

I would describe myself as a free soul wandering in music.

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Jazz is such a lovely genre. Which jazz (or any other) artists do you look up to?

I have many inspirations from many great bands and artists of many different styles, of course jazz comes first. I can’t stop listening to Ella Fitzgerald, she is my number one artist. I also love Billie Holiday and Nina Simone. I love the shading technique and low solid vibrato, but I try to combine this with power notes and a little bit of aggression that comes from listening to rock. I think one of the greatest current female rock singers is Hayley Williams from Paramore.

I can’t stop listening to Ella Fitzgerald, she is my number one artist.

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Vita Jazz video ‘Complete’

Also, I’m working on my high pitch and Ariana Grande inspires me with her technical vocals abilities. I know it’s hard to achieve every technique, but I will never stop trying to sing her songs.

There are few Lithuanian singers that probably have major influence on my like Justina Starinskaite from Saules Kliosas (Funk) and Justina Arlauskaite – Jazzu (Electronic). They really inspire me to become a great Lithuanian artist.

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What are you listening to at the moment?

Recently, I’ve been listening a lot of Mabel, Zara Larson, everything that is recorded by Flume and The Weeknd and of course there are many more artists: Gabrielle Aplin, Jess Glynne, Jessie J, Lana Del Rey, Slipknot, Deadmau5, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Coldplay, Melanie Martinez, Nirvana, Doors, Sia and so much more.

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Tell us about your latest EP ‘Complete’. Is there a story behind it?

I think EP ‘Complete’ is about the inner conflict and of course feelings that are inflicted in that particular moment. Over the last 4 or 5 years I had many troubles that were bothering me and the only way I could let it all go was through music. ‘Complete’ contains six tracks and each of them has a bit of a dramatic story.

For example, I would describe the song ‘Complete’ as an unexpected love story that suddenly finishes and then takes off again. It’s like going back and forth and never knowing what’s real.

EP ‘Complete’ is about the inner conflict and of course feelings that are inflicted in that particular moment.

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‘Different road’ is about choosing the right path without getting hurt. I think everyone has that difficulty of choosing what they want to do with their life, which is why ‘Different road’ listeners like the most because it is easy to relate to.

 

‘Fading’ shows a real inner conflict. I tried to show how fragile humans can be. It’s about being someone that’s always judged. It’s about changing yourself, trying to be someone else and it’s all because others would like you. When it’s all over you can’t recognise your true self.

I tried to show how fragile humans can be.

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In ‘Blanket of Faith’ I describe how I feel about ignorance, especially ignorance of humanity when probably most of the population don’t care about what’s going on in the world. It’s also about war and poverty. There are some powerful personas that do nothing. These days it’s so easy to turn your back to everything, because we’re so used it due to internet and most of us are self-involved. Maybe it’s only my opinion and maybe it sounds harsh, but whenever I am performing ‘Blanket of Faith’ I hope that people get my intentions and think, even if just for that moment, that faith is powerful and probably the only true thing we have left these days. This song makes me feel powerful on stage, because I know what I sing is right and when I see people listening intensely to it, my heart beats faster.

I hope that people get my intentions and think, even if just for that moment, that faith is powerful and probably the only true thing we have left these days.

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Vita has a degree in fine arts. Art by Vita.

‘World’ I wrote couple of years ago when I felt very blue. Before starting university I had some emotional troubles to deal with and writing this song was like therapy. I wanted to leave that sadness behind me, it was holding me back and I made it look like it was all in the past so it’s like a story. I’m basically describing my own world that surrounds me and affects me.

Writing this song was like therapy.

‘Strong’ is about abuse against women. I don’t really want to go deep describing this song because it’s quite personal, but to have a better picture imagine a little girl that is holding her mom’s hand and singing the song for her.

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In the future I hope to make more recordings, but different from these. Finally, I have my band and I feel very positive about it. I can’t wait to share my new music with my listeners.

 

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Photos by Anete Hiie, from personal collection & from the official video for ‘Complete’.