A taste of Spain in İstanbul

Could You Have Resisted Becoming An Artist In A House Full Of Art? In Your Terrible Twos, Perhaps. But Later, When You Realize You Haven’t An Iota Of Resistance In You, No Way.

A household name in Turkey these days, Monica Molina came to İş Sanat on February 28 and captivated us once again with her elegant splendor

It’s lovely to see you in Turkey again. What brought you here this time?
Istanbul is a fascinating city. People in Spain have been asking me about it ever since we did the shoots for my Self Portrait album in Cappadocia and Istanbul. Pasion Turca, who manages me and is also responsible for the Culture Ministry’s public relations in Spain, is behind the project, and since I’ve worked with the same team for years I feel like they are my family in Istanbul. On the evening of February 28 after a long hiatus I appeared once again at İş Sanat in my beloved Istanbul, which I had missed very much.

Why do you like Turkey so much? Is there anything other than our being a Mediterranean country?
I think I capture an extraordinary energy with music listeners in Turkey. Every time I come here the audiences at my concerts make me feel they love me so much. And thanks to our cooperation on the shoots we did in Istanbul and Cappadocia, where I was a guest of the Culture Ministry, I feel as if I have forged a very special emotional bond with Turkey. I didn’t feel at all like a stranger last year either when I was vacationing on the south coast with my daughter.

Would you like to sing a song in Turkish or work with Turkish musicians?
Leman Sam and I shared the same stage in Istanbul in 2006. I listened to all her songs, and Ağıt (Lament) was my favorite. It really moved me even though I didn’t understand the words.  Later when I found out what they meant and learned that it was a sad song a mother sings to her son, I could feel that myself as a mother. Leman Sam and I worked together on my best known song, Pequeno Fado. I remember that there was a tremendous energy between the two of us and with the audience. There is also a Sezen Aksu song that I sing at my concerts, and I know that how much the audience loves that song and Sezen Aksu.

As a person who grew up surrounded by art, do you think you were free in your choices? Did it ever cross your mind to do something that would surprise people?
I’ve been working with my brother Noel ever since I got into this business, and since he knows me very well his lyrics always seem to me as if I’ve written them myself. I consider myself free in that sense, because Noel knows me and writes songs that are suit me as a singer. Apart from that - and I don’t know how surprising it would be for people who listen to me - but singing the songs of my father, Antonio Molina, for me means taking responsibility for a very difficult project. My father’s songs are very powerful and difficult songs. I go to such lengths to be able to represent my father and his songs in the best possible way that I think everybody is going to be surprised when the songs and the album come out.

Motherhood and music. How will you pursue your career after you have raised your daughter?
My daughter is almost like a friend to me now. We go together on my concerts abroad. When she was smaller I always made sure I set aside time for her, but my job as a mother is a lot easier now. We even take a vacation together in the different countries I go to for my concerts. My career is continuing with her as a friend.

Do you believe in the importance of English for becoming an international artist? Do you think there are people who like you without understanding you?
I believe more in the magic of music. To my mind it doesn’t matter in what language you sing your songs. The feeling and the melody of the song are very important. But the feeling in the words of the songs are equally important in my opinion, and a good singer is able to make that emotion felt even in a listener who doesn’t know the language.

Your daughter is only nine years old. Do you sing your songs to her? Does she have opinions about your music?
My siblings and I grew up in a house full of the songs of my father, Antonio Molina. And now Candela is growing up with the songs my brother Noel writes and I sing. We do talk about the concerts that she comes on with me, when she is with me backstage. She shares my excitement, and that is a very special feeling.

DISCOGRAPHY

Autorretrato (2007).
A vida (2006).
De cal y arena (2003).
Vuela (2001).
Tu despedida (1999)

Spot: Molina’s Vuela album was nominated in the category Best Female Vocalist Album at the Latin Grammy Awards in 2002.

FROM ACTING TO MUSIC
Monica Molina began her artistic career acting in films and television series. Not long ago in 2009 she had a role in a series about the Spanish Civil War. She describes her views on acting and TV series as follows: “I played in a TV series in 2009 and enjoyed it immensely. I had the role of a secret agent who was a singer. If another good project comes my way, I would take part without hesitation, but what really makes me happy is being on the stage and singing songs.”