“I felt I needed one project that’s like, ‘If it’s just me alone in a room – this is what it’s going to sound like,'” Tatiana Hazel tells Remezcla in a morning Zoom call the day before the release of her And The World Will Turn EP. “It’s just an entire experience of ‘what would it be if I just did everything myself,’ you know?”
Always on the frontier of pushing the creative edge, the Los Angeles-based via Chicago alternative-pop songstress has brought unity to a multitude of worlds through her creations. From songwriter and audio engineer to fashion designer, Hazel won’t be pegged to just one craft. Instead, she reigns sovereign over many. Dancing on the fine wavering lines of genres, fashion influence, and production roles, the multi-faceted artist has proven time and time again to swim the waters of fluid exploration with ease and refined creative output.
“This is the first time I’ve done a whole thing, start to finish by myself. So, it just felt extremely personal,” she shares. For that reason, Tatiana Hazel’s latest work navigates us through a carefully crafted world that is signature to her style in every faceted way. On And The World Will Turn, Hazel offers us a declarative project that materializes that there’s nothing she can’t do by herself.
Parallel to the pandemic – that halted her initially conceived plans of preparing and producing a full-length album (that remains in the works) – the EP was something that she did not entirely plan. “I started making these songs, and it seemed like the right thing to do before I put out an album,” says Hazel. “I feel it was just me establishing more of my sound and showcasing the things I’ve learned from building up my skills.”
Viewing the unprecedented times as an opportunity to bask — rather than adjourn — in the ability to create everything from her bedroom, Hazel saw this as there is no better time to fully realize her dream project that stems from a fully conceived, produced, and mastered one-woman show.
On her most vulnerable offering yet, she provides listeners a one-way ticket into her inner world. She navigates through looming themes of uncertainty, self-doubt, and higher purpose with resolves that leave her and the album with feelings of inner peace, confidence, and self-assurance. As she processes an intimate coming to terms with her own creative freedom, Hazel hopes that the relatability of the “all too familiar but not often spoken of” feelings will translate to the audience’s own liberation in the process.
Here’s a track by track rundown of what Tatiana Hazel finds to be her most personal collection to date:
First of all, I would say this is my favorite track on the whole EP. It’s the only song that has a really well-built-out intro, so I loved opening it up with how it sounds like turning on a radio. This was also the only track I collaborated with someone on. I had set up a session with my friend Drew Polovick not intending to work on this song. We were going to start something new. I wrote the song the night before and did my own production, but the next day I was like, “I really like this! Can you help me build it out?” We did it virtually through discord sessions, and it just happened really quickly. From the night I wrote it to the next day, it was fully produced and done.
Listeners can interpret the song’s message in a lot of different ways, but it’s mostly a statement on how being happy is perceived by different people. You always think you need this next thing to be happy when you should just be happy while you’re getting to the thing you want. Everything else is sort of up for interpretation.
It’s All Right
This song might have been the first that I wrote on the project, but I wasn’t working on this EP yet. I wrote it to a completely different beat, and it was initially a quick freestyle I had made. Then, later when I made the actual guitar part, the melody came to mind, and I was like, “That sounds familiar!” Then I remembered I wrote it before. So it was like putting together an old demo with a new production.
The track is just saying there are really good days and really bad days, but it’s all going to be alright — which is essentially, you know, life. It just made me feel good when I wrote it and listened to it. And it’s really different from what I do now. I do darker songs or a lot of love-related songs, and this one is more personal. It was also inspired by Sam Cooke’s “It’s All Right.” A lot of people don’t know that it’s my own twist on that song. It sounds very different, but that was the whole inspiration for it.
Tired of Being Myself
‘Tired of Being Myself’ was maybe the second one that I wrote on the whole project and also came together quickly. I don’t want to say the messaging is about being friend-zoned because that’s lame! You should be okay with being friends with people. It’s just about always finding yourself in a situation where you’re just cool with everyone and love is happening around you, but not to you. So you’re just like, “I’m tired of being me!” It’s not a healthy thought, but it’s the honest thought that I think a lot of people have. Sometimes I like to write from that place where it’s silly but relatable at the same time.
I Don’t Give A Fuck
Especially over quarantine, people have had a lot of self-reflection, isolation, and time with themselves. I’ve always been that kind of person. I’ve always liked to be by myself a lot, but I feel I got even more to a place that it’s supposed to be about “I don’t really care what anyone else is doing or thinks about me. I’m going to be centered in what I’m doing and be sure of myself.”
I feel like I had that conversation with a lot of people around that time. I used to care about social media, other people’s perceptions, or compare my own life – especially career-wise. Most people I’ve talked to are just like, “I just don’t care anymore!” I know what I’m doing. I know who I am. The pre-chorus to this is “Shouldn’t I worry about everything they warned me about? Maybe, but I don’t give a fuck.” I think it’s a place that a lot of people are.
This one is the most personal. Everything else is made up of people I’ve met, experiences, or conversations I was having around that time. This one was just solely my own thing. It was about self-doubt and career stuff. It’s just saying while I’m spending all of my life doing music, doing this creative thing, there’s still this fear of uncertainty. But towards the end, I just feel like I really don’t care about the uncertainty because it’s all worth doing what I want to do. So it was personal for me, and everyone interprets things differently, but if I were not me and I was listening to the song – I feel I would want just to do whatever it is that I’m scared about doing.
At the end of the day, I wouldn’t want to do anything else. I also love the song because my main instrument is the guitar, and it always has been since I was 11. I haven’t been playing a lot of instruments in the past, but I just got back into it, and that was the first song where I’m actually playing my main instruments again. It was a good last song that will lead into my next project.