L.A. loves its electronic music, but what would those beats be without a sultry voice riding atop them? L.A. has a small coterie of rising singers spanning multiple styles within the broad category of House music that can bring a sort of delicacy to an otherwise aggressive track. SOFI, Fawni, and Mandy are three names from L.A.’s increasingly internationalized House scene that you need to know.
2010 was a good year for SOFI (Some Other Female Interest). She exploded onto the scene after appearing on two tracks on friend Deadmau5’s latest album, 4X4 = 12. The Greek-born, Germany-raised singer (born Sofia Toufa) has been in the game since her early teens, when she was in a popular German R&B group named Danacee.
More recently, SOFI has been bringing an aggressive, almost rock-style of singing (she lives with her boyfriend Tommy Lee, after all) to dance music. Check out her performance on “Sofi Needs A Ladder” for proof.
This year, she’ll release her own record on Deadmau5’s imprint Mau5trap Recordings, that may surprise fans. I talked to the singer last week and she said “many” styles of music are represented on the album, perhaps even some poppier tracks. Expect the requisite bangers on the record, as she’s been busy in the studio with producer Skrillix. A teaser single from the set should drop by summer, she said last week.
While Toufa shares an ability to speak German with new-ish Los Angeles resident Fawni, their approaches to dance music couldn’t be more different. Fawni is currently making noise in more traditional dance music circles with her new single “Ready When You Are,” which was produced by one of Spain’s biggest commercial house producers and was recently featured on Manhattan radio station KTU’s website.
Not only is Fawni, born Stefanie Pschill, a budding dance floor diva, but also she’s an art world star in the making. The singer boasts shrewd artistic instincts and has a few paintings going up at Bloomingdale’s Soho in Manhattan next month, as part of the “Fashion IS Art” pop up gallery series.
Last but not least is up-and-coming L.A.-based singer Mandy Ventrice. Hardly anyone in Los Angeles has even heard of Ventrice, but she’s already a familiar face in several European countries thanks to YouTube and two club bangers that received play from Berlin to Barcelona in 2010. “Let Loose” showed her vocal range, while her performance on Michael Mind’s German stomper “Delirious” got the attention of the music industry. This year, Ventrice is busy working on new tracks in L.A. with Grammy nominated producer Micayle “Mack” McKinney (Ne-Yo) that may well propel her to greater heights in the U.S.