Getting Through Hard Times with TRACE
When times get tough, I turn to music to help me through it. It’s a universal language that has the power to bring us all together. And that’s exactly what we need right now. Fittingly, TRACE has just released her new single Hard Times. And better yet, she also agreed to an interview with Ciao Amore, which I’m happy to share with you all today.
The Little Things
Originally from Orange County, TRACE has lived in Los Angeles for the past seven years, which she calls home. In times like these, it’s important to hold on to the little things in life that bring us joy. I wanted to know what those are for TRACE. “It might sound silly but I love going out for a cup of coffee. It’s a nice ritual to wake up, get coffee and go for a walk. I also love cooking and find that to bring joy too. A nice text from a friend out of nowhere can also bring a lot of unexpected joy“. You know that friend that you’ve been meaning to check in on? Pick up your phone and send them a message, it’ll make their day!
TRACE tells me she has always liked to write, but started to create music in a serious manner five years ago. “I had a song I wrote in college, I decided to get it produced to make it sound less acoustic and more electronic“. She tells me that it’s tough for her to describe her genre – “I would say pop-synth meets bedroom pop meets indie-ish?” Sounds like a good combo to me!
When it comes to inspiration for her work, TRACE looks at the lessons she’s learned in life. “Lessons learned. Relationships with friends and beyond friends. Heartache and longing“. And you can really see that in her work, it’s like peeking into someone else’s thoughts and feelings, which makes TRACE’s work very raw and honest. “When I need inspiration, I try to make sure I’m connected to my body and I try to eliminate distractions“. When it comes to writer’s block, TRACE tells me that it can come out of nowhere so sometimes you just have to ride it out.
To be able to work on her music, TRACE needs to wake up in prayer and meditation, waking up her body and mind. Coffee and breakfast come first before she can sit down and start working on her music. “I need to make sure I’m spiritually, mentally, and physically aligned to create from a pure and free place“.
A State of Being
TRACE tells me what’s challenging creatively is getting stuck in her head, overthinking or feeling that you’re forcing something. I can definitely relate to that, creativity can’t be forced and I think we can all get stuck in our heads sometimes. “Just “being” sounds impossible but it can happen. I enjoy confessing things. Getting things off my chest. It makes art feel selfish in that sense, but I enjoy that feeling of lightness. I also enjoy creating something that can heal. Myself and others“. I don’t think it’s selfish, I think it’s what makes TRACE’s music truly authentic. And knowing that the music comes from an honest place, gives it more depth and realness.
When it comes to the themes TRACE likes to explore with her songwriting, she tells me that the topic of mental health is very important to her. “Also longing and desires are definitely prominent themes. And I would add self-reflection has been a bigger theme lately“.
TRACE’s new single Hard Times is out now and I wanted to learn more about it. She tells me that the song felt timely and is pretty straightforward. “When I wrote it, initially it was about living in a city with people who don’t really care about you. And how it’s hard enough to go through life. But when you go through it around crowds of people who don’t care to know about what you’re going through, it’s exhausting“. And I think that’s very relatable, we’re mostly surrounded by lots of people, but can still be very much alone. “It then evolved into a song about how we can sometimes all bond over bad things or fleeting things. Sometimes it’s irresistible so I’m trying to resist it“. We’re all definitely going through a shared experience together right now, which hopefully will bond us closer together as a society.
Asked about if there’s an album on the horizon, TRACE tells me that it’s the dream and she’s working on a lot of songs right now. So let’s keep our fingers crossed!
Lastly, I wanted to find out what is something TRACE wishes more people were talking about now. “I’d love more conversations about identity and family and the places where we come from. I’m finding myself going back to my childhood lately and there’s just a lot of trauma I didn’t know existed. I’m the first person to be so anti-the past and I’m all about the future, but there’s value to looking back. Where we come from is crucial. Along those lines, it would be cool to hear people continue to talk more about mental health, stigmas around it and also culture and race. We have a lot to learn about each other…” That’s a very powerful message. And this is the perfect time to reflect on the past, to help us move forward. Stay safe and stream Hard Times!