Was there something (an experience) or someone in your life that was the "catalyst" for you to start writing music? Tell us about it:
When I was a very young child, I discovered the piano via our 80s Casio keyboard. I was enthralled and taught myself several songs by ear, including The Entertainer and Somewhere out There from the Children's movie, An American Tale. One day, I got the opportunity to perform the songs live at my elementary school. When I realized I could understand the piano even without any instruction, it made me realize anything was possible. I was hooked.
Let's get this out of the way. What is the CRAZIEST thing that has ever happened to you in your music career?: Once when I was performing at Avalon on Hollywood and Vine, I was doing my Time Travel show, and when we arrived in Ancient Egypt, I changed the music to deep progressive with middle eastern elements. As a part of my costume, I put on a custom-made Anubis head with LED eyes (It kind of reminds me of something from the movie Star Gate). This amped up a middle-eastern man in the audience and he got so excited, he jumped on stage and started dancing with joy. Security had to come and take him down. It was hilarious!
What has been the high point of your music path?
Along my path of being a musician there have been some incredible high points, such as playing the Olympic Stadium in South Korea. Another high point was opening for Darude at Avalon - that was definitely a (surreal) dream come true. The best moments for me, however, are those times when people I've met over the years tell me how I touched them. I am a believer in PLUR, peace, love, unity, respect - and I always try to send unconditional love out. There are some people who remember the exact moment I met them, and the loving energy we exchanged. That's what I'm here for.
So, how do you approach songwriting or what is your creative process like? I like to hit the gym and get some sunshine early in the day - and then if possible, I go to nature. Nature is my greatest equalizer and inspiration. Then, I usually tuck myself away where I can be alone for hours, and go deep within my own spirit to connect with source. Music is a mystical experience for me, and a connection to the divine. The creation process is powerful and it gives me such a rush when I channel a new melody or lyric from beyond. Sometimes the ideas just flow into me, from the future, or from another dimension.
What do you see as the biggest challenge facing Indie Artists today? Or, if you could ask the music industry to change one thing, what would it be? I definitely feel like women are still not treated right in the music industry. I have endured a lot of sexism over the years. In this industry, they assume that if you are an attractive woman, that you somehow cheated to get where you are. It rarely occurs to my male peers that I actually have spent over a decade learning how to produce in Ableton, and that I genuinely am the composer of my songs. It's frustrating when I spend so much time in the studio composing and then am still usually referred to as merely a "singer", when I am so much more than that. But the fans know, and the fans are amazing, so it makes it all worth it.
If you could share the stage with one other artist or band, who would it be and why? I would love to share the stage with one of my favorite bands from the 1980s.- like Depeche Mode, Duran Duran, or Oingo Boingo. I'm a huge 80s freak and I really look up to the pioneers who developed New Wave. It would be a dream come true to have a famous New Wave band like SoftCell onstage with me during the time travel segments where we go back in time. I'm envisioning it now and I can't stop smiling at the thought.
What are your rehearsals generally like? Or, how do you prepare for a live show? Last summer in Crete I began working with a team of backup dancers, and that was a really fun experience. It was also a unique challenge because I had to stand out in the front of all the dancers and each move had to be perfectly timed, or else it wouldn't look right on camera. It was an insane amount of pressure, and only now can I fully appreciate how hard it must be for people like Britney Spears who have intricate dance segments that go on for hours at her concerts. The more you practice, the better it goes. It takes a ton of dedication and time.
Pick one song that was your greatest challenge to write. Tell us about it! My forthcoming release SPIRITUS I and SPIRITUS II is definitely the most challenging piece I have ever written. It is a renaissance-style choral piece with Opera mixed with Trance. I guarantee it's unlike anything you have ever heard before. This one song was so length and complex, I decided splitting it into two. Still each song is filled with dramatic musical changes and classically-inspired vocals that take you soaring up to heaven.
What's coming up in the future? I'm moving to Greece this April, and from there I plan to make my next moves as an artist working primarily in Europe. I'm releasing my album "Passages of Time" this Spring. From there, absolutely anything is possible- I would love to do a world tour with my Time Travel Show, and become resident on one of the Greek islands as well. My dreams are big - someday I'd even like to have my own music festival.
Tell us where fans can access your music!
About Amanda Darling
Is she from the future, or from the past? Amanda Darling is music producer also known as "The Time Traveling DJ." Enchanting audiences with her classically trained vocals, Amanda Darling conjures up musical magic at every performance. With raw passion and unrelenting energy, she stands out as a unique artist within the Trance paradigm.
Having built a loyal following in the Los Angeles through her residencies at Avalon and Exchange LA, Amanda has also performed worldwide at ULTRA KOREA, EDC and also in various clubs and festivals around Europe including the UK and Greece. Amanda's latest two musical releases "Mystery" and "Captured" both landed at #1 on the Beatport International Trance Releases Chart. She collaborated with Shardad Rohani, on her song "My Love", and has also worked with producers Aressa, Adrian Alexander, and more. Her radio show "AXION" broadcasts around the world every week from the Unites States, Italy and the UK. Amanda has opened main stage for some of the top names in the industry, including Darude, BT, Hardwell, Bobina, Omnia, Heatbeat, David Gravell, Omnia, Orjan Nilsen and radio mogul, Judge Jules.