It was a great honor to have a chat with talented miss Nalyssa Green. Apart from her mesmerizing voice and ethereal appearance, I was happy to discover a girl who has a mind full of dreams and two feet firmly placed on the ground. Not only is Nalyssa a truly sweet person that makes you want to listen to her music again and again, but she is also a very humble artist, who serves music in the best way she can and has fully understood her role as an artist in a society that is handling with a bit too much right now. And I feel optimistic, because it is by meeting people like her, that I know it’s all going to be fine.
How did you come up with the name Nalyssa Green? What is your real name?
My real name is Violetta. Nalyssa Green used to be my screen name at this game I was playing online, Line Age.
You are currently studying Mass Media, but somehow music has gotten your full attention.
Yes, when I was younger I wanted to become a journalist and report straight from the war zone. Then that changed, and I wanted to cover political issues through journalism. Then everything changed, and I no longer wanted to be a journalist, all I wanted to do is write and sing and play music.
You currently have your own band / collaborators and have a new record on the way.
That’s right, with me are Spyros Livanis, who is also my producer, and Vaggelis Aslanidis. My new record will be out by the end of the month, and it is going to be called ‘the Seed’.
That’s an interesting name. Any particular reasons why you are naming your second album like that?
It actually is named after a song in the album, which is called ‘A Seed’. It all started a while back, when I visited this island to camp there. And that was one of the most beautiful and amazing things I have ever experienced. I somehow got closer to myself and closer to nature, found myself million miles away from the city and all its neuroses and started appreciating the simplicity of the environment and the amazing fact that everything is somehow connected and we are all made of the same basic elements.
As opposed to your first record…
Which was a lot more esoteric. It was like standing in a room and just pouring out al your thoughts and emotions. My mood was much more melancholic I guess back then.
Is it hard, to put your emotions and thoughts out there? Do you feel exposed?
No, because everything in the end is just a song. When you are singing about your thoughts, it feels like wearing a mask that lets you express yourself, without putting yourself out there too much, without having to be shy or scared, you know?
And you also have a thing for fish. You recently had a tattoo done on your wrist picturing a fish.
I love fish and the way it can be perceived as a symbol. My tattoo pictures a bream, which is I guess the most common fish. It’s the first kind that jumps into your head when you think of fish.
Is the way people relate to music different than it used to be?
For sure. People are much more exposed to information nowadays and you hear something and don’t even have the time to digest it and make up your mind about it. It’s funny, we used to listen to records a few years back over and over again, and even after the 100th time you were listening to it, it still had something to give to you.
How much is your industry affected by the mass media?
Too much! The only way I can get my music out there is through the internet, and most importantly through facebook. It’s not the radio or I don’t know what, it’s just the internet. But you know, I can’t really have an overall view on this, because I started producing and making music in the internet age, so I have no idea how things were done before.
You used to collaborate with many different bands. Was it hard to go solo and make your own album?
No, not at all. It came out naturally. It was something I just had to do. There were so many songs I had written and never got the chance to properly present. It was something I had in mind for a long time, and then suddenly it was the right time to make the next step.
Is it hard to perform in front of an audience? Do you ever get nervous? And also, how important are visuals or special effects during a concert?
It’s not hard, it’s what made me want to sing in the first place. To just stand in front of people and communicate with them. Sometimes I do get nervous, but only until we start playing and then it’s all over. As for visuals or lighting or anything complementary to singing during a concert, I think it is truly great if you can collaborate with other artists and combine different practices. After all a concert is a show you are giving and sometimes it becomes theatrical. So everything has its own significant role in the feelings and the impressions you are trying to generate. The lights, the music, the volume, the clothes. Everything.
Your time spend camping on a Greek island really influenced you and inspired you in your second album. Yet we live in a city that turns its back to the natural and that offers very little ‘un-touched’ areas. What would you change in the city of Athens?
Athens is beautiful, but it need more green space, more public space and more free space. I think I would tear down all the ugly apartment buildings that prevent the light from coming down the street level and hide the sky and I would preserve and take care of all the beautiful old buildings there are in this city. But, unfortunately, it is also because of our culture that we are lacking of beauty and public space in Athens. People are spending all their time, energy and money on making their private spaces decent and even luxurious and completely forget about the common space they use. Things are changing though. People are changing, the economy now is making it a bit hard for people to spend their time at a cafeteria where a cappuccino is sold for 3.50 euros and slowly, but steadily, public spaces are becoming live again.
Can music lift our spirits during the recession?
Yes it can. Now that everything is going downwards, everybody want to fulfill their basic needs as persons. And music can help us get to that point. It is the most popular form of art and it can reach straight to our hearts.
A few comments on the things pictured above: Nalyssa Green loves green. You can see it on her walls, her clothes and her toe nails. / The white dress she wore in her first album cover was a dress she made herself. It is actually her living room curtains attached to her body. / The wooden frame pictured with her John Lennon sunglasses is actually laser-cut. / She fainted when she had her tattoo done. Nalyssa loves fish but hates needles. / The dress she wears in the first pictures is by Holy Mustache Vintage Shop.