Tina Arena is bringing her blend of sophisticated pop to Brisbane.
We were all thinking it, but Tina Arena has gone and said it. Pop music just isn’t what it used to be.
There is still the odd catchy hit with a rockin’ beat and meaningful lyrics floating through the airwaves, but on a whole today’s chart topping hits are often a little lacking in the depth department. In Arena’s words there has been an “institutionalised dumbing down of popular music” in recent years, with the acclaimed songstress and ARIA winner claiming that today’s music lacks heart and emotion.
“What I mean by that is, that I guess I’ve found that popular music in the last decade is just simplistic and doesn’t talk about much,” she clarifies. “Most of it doesn’t mean much, it’s not discussing topics that are relevant.I grew up in an era when pop music was about experiences. With my music I’ve never considered myself to be somebody who is incredibly shallow so I can’t help but be honest. I just go with the songs I have and I think that a sense of calculation never works.”
It’s a big statement to make, but in fact Arena is now putting her money where her mouth is and funding her own national tour in a bid to bring her music to the masses. Following the release of her album RESET last year Arena is now touring her new material across Australia, material that she has labelled ‘sophisticated pop songs with real and empathetic narratives”.
“It was just a natural evolution to be able to do this at this stage in my life, it just felt right,” she answers, when asked why she has taken on such a big financial and creative undertaking.” Yes, it does make me nervous but you have to believe in what you do. Nothing ventured nothing gained. That’s my philosophy, you have to have a go.
“Being on any kind of tour is a big responsibility and there is a lot of pressure, the show’s are constant and that’s a lot of work. But being on stage and hearing people sing my songs with me is incredibly gratifying. Feedback to the album was incredibly positive and I was very pleasantly surprised.”
Work on RESET began in late-2012, coinciding with Tina starting work on her soon-to-be-released autobiography, Now I Can Dance. While working on the album she traveled to Sweden where she collaborated with the celebrated songwriting team of Mattias Lindblom and Anders Wollbeck.
“Here I am, this mad Aussie-Italian woman sitting in a room with these two Vikings,” she says with a laugh. “Big beautiful men that just embraced me.”
Some may wonder why one of Australia’s highest selling female artists would let more than 12 years pass between original releases, with her last offering being 2001’s Just Me, but according to Arena she’s been anything but idle.
“I did release records,” she says. “I did French and English records and I was working and doing other things that were taking my priorities. I then felt fresh coming back to Australian music after taking that break.
“The hardest part of this career for me has been the constant scrutiny, I just have to remember that it’s about staying true to yourself and never veering away from what you do. My advice to anybody wanting to enter this industry is to be clear about your intentions and be motivated by the right things. Because if you’re only motivated by being a celebrity, then you’re going to have a hard time.”
Tina Arena’s RESET tour will come to the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre on Sunday 24 August, for tickets visit www.premier.ticketek.com.au .