Five Questions With LEVELSEVEN

Guelph, ON-based alternative R&B artist LEVELSEVEN (aka Nina Platiša) has unveiled her brand new video for “I Wove A Garment For You”.

The track is accompanied by playfully edited archival footage from the 1957 film A Dancer’s World, featuring dances conceived by iconic modern dancer and choreographer Martha Graham.

Recorded in Los Angeles in collaboration with co-producer Jonah Mutono, “I Wove A Garment For You” was originally written during a trip to England. Platiša was inspired by a visit to the island of Lindisfarne, home to the ruins of a medieval monastery, and was stirred by the idea of monastic living and lifelong devotion; Platiša explains:

“I thought about how the act of creating something for someone is in some small way an act of devotion. For several years I have woven textiles on a wooden loom. Once woven and washed, the threads of fabric unite to become one garment. “I Wove A Garment For You” is the song of a weaver who has woven a garment for someone she loves. The garment is the embodiment of the weaver’s care and commitment. She sings to the wearer: “and if you outgrew, I’d measure, I’d measure”, pledging to adjust the garment as they grow together, never apart.”

Check out the video for “I Wove A Garment For You” below, and find out more about LEVELSEVEN via our Five Questions With segment.

Care to introduce yourself to our readers?

My name is Nina Platiša, I was born in Belgrade, Former Yugoslavia, and I’m currently based in Guelph, Canada. There are two main strands to the music I make. Firstly, under the moniker LEVELSEVEN, I am the songwriter, vocalist, and producer of music spanning the electronic, pop, and R&B genres, of which my new release I Wove A Garment For You is an example. Secondly, as a composer and lifelong pianist, I explore storytelling through solo piano. With the generous support of a Canada Council for the Arts grant for Research and Creation and Ontario Arts Council grant for Music Creation, 2020-21 is seeing me create Za Klavir: For the Piano, a collection of 24 original compositions blending minimal, contemporary and classical roots with elements of Balkan folk.

Tell us a bit about your music and writing style.

Whether making music for LEVELSEVEN or my solo piano compositions, I find many different routes to composing and building a song. The first and most important step is to feel inspiration, which comes in a myriad of forms. For me, inspiration can emerge from encountering artwork, sculpture, film, novels, music, or more abstract things like light or the texture and shape of an object. I have a dog and often find when I go for a long walk alone, melodies and concepts materialize.

It’s one thing to get inspiration but another to catch it. I’m always learning to recognize the feeling of inspiration and then to make the space and take the time it needs to flourish and materialize. Ideas arrive on their own time and it’s my job to be ready to receive them. Luckily, I’ve often got my phone on hand to capture ideas in a note or voice memo. If I’m at home, I’ll work at the piano or on the computer to record a long session of improvisation – I love giving things a chance to find their way out before imposing too much structure on them. I remember life before smartphones, when I had to play my ideas over and over again until they were memorized. I still believe now as I did then, any idea worth remembering always reappears. I often find myself humming a melody I created months earlier and realize it’s still waiting to be formed into something more concrete.

Do you have any upcoming shows?

No upcoming shows planned yet due to COVID-19.

If you were asked to suggest only one of your songs for someone to hear, which would it be?

My latest single I Wove A Garment For You.

Canadian Beats is all about Canadian music, so who are your current favourite Canadian bands/ artists?

Arcade Fire, Feist, Charlotte Day Wilson, Chilly Gonzales.

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