Ital ‘n’ vital: prepare the popwaves for Giulia.
Taken from the Summer Issue of Wonderland
As soon as the majestically named Giulia Donà dalle Rose walks into the room, I know we’re going to get on. Petite and unassuming upon arrival, it takes about two seconds flat for her to take command. Rifling through clothes samples, trying on shoes — boot on one foot, stiletto on the other — calling out what she wants to the make-up artist and hair stylist next door, Donà dalle Rose is a woman in charge.
“I like that you know what you want!” I encourage the 26-year-old singer as we sit down to talk while the glam squad fuss over her. She stops me from time to time to show the team reference pictures of blonde and bronzed goddesses illuminating her iPhone screen. “I really know what I want,” Donà dalle Rose grins. “The most important thing for me is that [my music is] 100% me, and 100% what I really like.”
That ethos explains the eclectic vocal style which she’s been honing since aged 11, when she first convinced her parents to enrol her in singing classes. The family followed her polo player father all over the world whilst Giulia Donà dalle Rose was growing up, skipping from Rome to Buenos Aires, back to Italy again, before landing here, in London. It’s her time in Argentina that holds special significance for Donà dalle Rose though. “It’s such a different country,” she sighs, “it’s a huge country, and their way of living, it’s very, very passionate and out there. And it imprints on to you when you grow up. I think that the way I am today is because of that imprint, for sure…” She concludes, “I’m a citizen of the world!”
It’s a change to discuss music in terms of the crossover of geographical influences rather than genres, so Donà dalle Rose lays it down for me. “I’m not an Italian artist… My sound is an international sound. I always say I was born as a country rock singer-musician. [My sound’s] from Argentina, it’s very Americanised because I grew up in the countryside. Then, the pop-ish, more commercial sound is from Europe… It’s a mix, like me!”
2014’s single, “Radio Junky”, is Donà dalle Rose at fully-fledged country queen, harking about good ol’ fashioned rock ’n’ roll with a hint of a twang in her voice set to syncopated beats. Her inner pop diva shines through on 2015’s balladic track, “Turn Your Light On”, the video to which sees Donà dalle Rose brandishing fluorescent bulbs like lightsabers. This year’s release, “Addictable” is closer to electro-pop. In the track’s video, she is pictured running down Ridley Road and grabbing some WKD from the offie before finding herself in Dalston basement club The Nest — the kind of night out we can all relate to.
“I want to be faithful to who I am, and my style, but I’m constantly changing,” Donà dalle Rose expands when I outline her musical evolution. “My humour changes all the time, and my music tends to change. But I’m still me… Adele’s album — she’s great and her music is great — but it’s all the same, more or less. Same mood, same lyrics, same songs. That’s not me. I could never do an album like that, just because I don’t feel the same things all the time.”
“I think I’ve always had performing in me,” she grins. “I like making people laugh, I like to talk a lot! I kind of like the attention, in a way.” She hastily adds, “in a good way!” Donà dalle Rose will have to bask in attention just a little while longer following the release of the deluxe edition of her debut album, Raze Me To The Ground, out on 20th May. Five years in the making, the record chronicles Donà dalle Rose’s transition from adolescence into adulthood. “It’s been such a long process because I grew up so much in these years. Some of the songs on this album are from four years ago, and some are songs I’ve written that are three months old… So it was re-produced, and some of the songs are more mature, more foolish, some more sad and happy.”
“I don’t want to sound arrogant with it,” she pauses, for the first time looking a little bit coy. “I really think it’s a great album… Raze Me To The Ground is also a title of a song… I thought, and it is, going to be so strong on the market, like a bomb that it will raise all the competition to the ground!” Giulia Donà dalle Rose laughs and shrugs, “Kinda, like that… I want to raise everybody, like an explosion!” Watch this space or duck and cover, Giulia’s about to take off.
Cream floral print dress by ANNA SAMMARONE
Black cotton jumper by AMERICAN APPAREL
Black cotton jumper by AMERICAN APPAREL
Photographer: Megan K Eagles
Hair Stylist: Sven Bayerbach at Carol Hayes Management using KIEHL’S
Makeup: John Christopher at Carol Hayes Management using MAC COSMETICS
Fashion Assistants: Abigail Hazard and Owen Mooney