Ana Lua Caiano: "I have this huge ritual before each concert"

Dec 20 / 2023

15 nominees. It's quite the number. How on EARTH are you going to know which artists to vote for, for the Public Choice Award? We've got you covered. In our 2 min read, you'll learn about their pets, favorite artists, funny stories and listen to their inspirations. Next up: Ana Lua Caiano.

What is your name and where are you from?
I’m Ana Lua Caiano and I’m from Portugal.

Tell us how you started making music.

I started composing music when I was around 15 years old. During that time I was studying jazz, so I started to play and explore songs that I composed with other musicians from that music school. And for a long time I was used to playing with bands with several instruments (piano, guitar, double bass, drums and more).

But it was during the pandemic that I started to compose music that explored the mixture between traditional Portuguese music with electronic music and ‘sounds from the daily life’. After that, I started to play alone, because it wasn’t possible to play with other musicians.

I fell in love with composing, producing and playing the songs by my own. So despite it being a very tough and lonely time, the pandemic gave me the time and the ‘silence’ to explore the music that I make today!

Tell us a little secret (almost) nobody knows about you.

Before entering the stage I have to imagine exactly what I’ll do on every single music note. I have to think about the beginning of every song, about the loops… So I have this huge ritual before each concert.

Open question: tell us something you want to share about yourself.

I wanted to share that a very important thing to me that really helped to compose and to explore different ways of thinking, was to participate in every little course or workshop that could be related to music — any kind of music!

So in the last few years I participated in a Brazilian percussion course, in a course of group improvisation, I took classes of the Portuguese instrument “adufe”, I participated in a cellphone synthesizer ensemble, I took a course of concrete music and more.

Whenever I can, I try to learn or to get in contact with very different types of music. And for me, this constant need to explore and to learn has really helped me to expand my horizon and the way I think about music!

Tell us the last song you’ve listened to, and tell us something you like about that song.

The last song that I listened to was ‘Good Girl’ by The Legendary Tigerman, a Portuguese musician. This song is from the last album he released this September. I love this song because it mixes a lot of different genres, including rock and electronic which gives this song, and this album, a very interesting intense and groovy ambiance!

What's the best gig you've ever been to?

Luckily, I’ve been to a lot of amazing concerts! But I think the most recent one that really took me by surprise was the concert of Feist in Lisbon, the presentation of her latest album ‘Multitudes’. It was an immersive, surprising and interactive concert as I’ve never seen before! She has this amazing capability of being able to make you cry with her songs and in the next minute make you laugh with something she said! It was a beautiful show.

Which song of your own is the most significant to you and why?

The one with most significant to me is “Se Dançar É Só Depois”. This song reflects on the habitation crises that is now happening in Portugal, mostly in the major cities. It’s a song that talks about a woman that works too much and because of that doesn’t have time to dance and sleeps with her feet on the floor so it’s easy to get up.

What album (or albums) have shaped you the most as an artist and generally as a person? What impact did they have on you?

There are a lot of albums that marked me a lot and really influenced the way I think and make music. In terms of Portuguese influences, I would have to name Zeca Afonso’s album ‘Com As Minhas Tamanquinha’, Fausto Bordalo Dias’s album ‘Por Este Rio Acima’ and Sérgio Godinho’s album ‘Pano-cru’.

In terms of electronic and more experimental music, I would have to name Portishead’s album ‘Third’, the 1968 album of Silver Apples, ‘Selma Songs’ by Björk and ‘Big Science’ by Laurie Anderson. Also, albums from Chico Buarque such as ‘Caravanas’ and the 1967 album from Caetano Veloso have also influenced me a lot, mostly because of its lyrics.

Is there a song people wouldn't expect you to like?

I’m not sure if it’s expected or not, but I don’t think I’ve shared yet. I really enjoy listening to Stromae’s most recent album ‘Multitude’. The song that I most like in this album is ‘Mauvaise Journée’. I really enjoy this song because despite having a lot of rhythm, it’s a really sad song about depression.

Any new music you are listening to right now?

It’s not completely new, but I discovered Marina Herlop’s music this year. ‘Pripyat’ is an amazing experimental and beautiful album that I’ve been listening to a lot in the last months.

Who is your dream collab with and why?

This is such a hard choice, because making a collaboration with every single artist that I named in this interview would be a real privilege! But maybe I would choose Chico Buarque because he is such an amazing composer, writer and singer.

He has this amazing talent of creating such beautiful and seemingly simple melodies, that are actually really hard to sing. He sings them with such naturality that gives me goosebumps. Also, the way he is able to create amazing lyrics that seem to fit so well into the melodies: it’s amazing!

You've created a playlist for us, to give us a peek into your inspirations. Tell us about it!

Usually I get obsessed with an artist and for two or three months I just listen to that artist. So this playlist represents several artists that I’ve been obsessed with in different stages of my life!