On Thursday September 20th, Label Music had the fantastic opportunity to conduct a phone interview with Marina Lambrini Diamandis, otherwise known under her stage name “Marina & the Diamonds”.

After reaching number two on the BBC Sound of 2010 poll list, Marina has gone from strength to strength releasing two successful albums so far: “The Family Jewels” and more recently “Electra Heart” in April of this year, which debuted at number one on the UK Album Chart. Label Music Editor Ella Stanbrook reflects on her chat with the singer:

After reading into Marina’s background, I discovered her interest in music started at a young age whilst in school. I was interested in finding out what gave her inspiration to pursue this interest into a career.  Marina talked about how at school she was always very creative, with interests not only in music but also other arts, including design, fashion, photography and, particularly, writing. It was therefore her creative flair combined with the classic lure of being a pop star that gave her the drive to pursue a career in music.

Marina described how in her early years, the biggest challenge that she faced when starting out was fighting criticisms from people calling her ‘crazy’ for her choice of career. While she had the unconditional support from family members, others who had not heard her sing thought she was mad for following this career path.

When asked to give advice for those student bands around campus struggling to make it in the industry, Marina said aside from making full use of the internet which “makes the music industry a lot smaller” and finding and utilising key contacts, one of the most important things is to keep going and “never stop writing”.

Marina cites American singer-songwriter Daniel Johnston as her biggest musical influence, saying she was lured to his work and his “cult status”. Along with Kylie Minogue, Britney Spears and Nirvana, Marina cites Madonna as another one of her biggest influences describing her admiration for the singer. As well as those who influenced her, I asked Marina how she was affected by these artists. She stated that it was not specifically her music that the artists influenced, but was that of a psychological nature instead. Marina observed them to see how they did what they did and how they got where they were and attempted to emulate it.

Her favourite aspect of her career she said is that she is able to do what she loves for a living and without financial worries, choosing the writing and creation of the music videos as her most favourite area. Unlike some artists who aren’t fond of touring, Marina claims it is a big part of being an artist and that she loves it, despite the ups and downs: “Sometimes when I’m at home I wish I was out touring but, at the same time sometimes while touring, I wish I was back at home”.

While researching Marina & the Diamonds and the success of their albums, I noted her significant success abroad as well as in the UK, particularly around Europe. I, therefore, asked her if she spends a lot of her time promoting abroad. To this she replied that indeed she did spend a lot of time establishing themselves abroad, saying that she probably spends as much time promoting in Germany and America as she does in the UK.

With regard to her latest album “Electra Heart”, Marina spoke about the main themes that run through it including love, heartbreak and identity. While she tried to be specific about the message she wanted to deliver with her album, Marina stated that as with all pieces of art it is open to the interpretation of the listeners.

So what can we expect from Marina & the Diamonds in the future? Marina is touring at the moment and will be performing at the Leicester O2 Academy on Monday November 8th. New single “How to be a Heartbreaker” is to be released soon, and following the end of her tour we can look forward to more great singles and albums to come!


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