“Wrapped in the Covers” is a series that went on all through last year and while I miss it, I’ll be forever grateful it introduced me a lot of talented artists I may not have discovered otherwise. One of them that always stood out was Xandra. She did a stunning cover of Third Eye Blind and when I was thinking about women to feature in this month’s section of the “Women in Music” series, I had to go with her. See, this month is all about female singers and she’s numero uno on the list so let’s get to know more about the songstress from Texas who lives so close to Austin but has never been to SXSW!
Kendra: Mindy Kaling is my muse when I write, who was your female muse when it came time to pen and record last summer’s A Blush of Hot Pink?
Xandra: I guess if Patty Griffin, Vanessa Carlton and Mazzy Star had a baby? They all have qualities in their music that I love. I had inspiration from both male and female artists, but those are the chicks!
Kendra: You’re participating in the Guitar Center Singer-Songwriter contest. Are you writing something new for that, or putting one of your tracks from your latest in the mix?
Xandra: There were a total of five songs that I submitted into the contest, one of which is the second track titled “Anyway” off my EP. The other four songs are fairly new and might make their way into a future album later on. It was really fun participating last year as well as this year. Definitely lots of talented musicians and I wish them all the best of luck!
Kendra: Last year there was this story circulating about a battle of the bands where a group of young girls (maybe the oldest being 14?) was told something along the lines that they weren’t sexy enough on stage. What are your thoughts about the sexism that comes with the music industry?
Xandra: As musicians (and generally speaking) I think it’s important to stay true to yourself. To say that underage girls are not “sexy enough” is wrong all on it’s own. Most of my favorite female performers aren’t overly glamorous women. At the end of the day, I think it boils down to the artist’s authenticity. To me, that’s what should be sexy. Music that’s for the ears not the eyes.
Kendra: Have you ever felt like you’ve been treated in such a way since starting your career?
Xandra: I’m happy to say that everyone in my life has been very supportive of my ambitions!
Kendra: Flipping the page, let’s talk about home. Is the San Antonio scene as vagrant as Austin?
Xandra: Austin is definitely a one-of-a-kind and diverse music town, but San Antonio also has some great talent if you know where to look. Oh, and delicious tacos too.
Kendra: You just dropped a new song, “Cold,” in January. Were you inspired by the winter weather?
Xandra: I would say so. I was actually bedridden with a terrible cold when I began writing that song. The first verse “Wishing for December, scattered in the glitter gold” just came to me, so I rhymed that up with cold and the song just evolved after that point.
Kendra: Can we expect more seasonal songs throughout the rest of the year?
Xandra: Since the holidays have passed, I’ve been doing quite a bit of writing and hope to produce some new music for spring/summer.
Kendra: Other than music, I noticed you do enjoy a good book. One of the last you read was a sci-fi tale. If you had the opportunity to write a song for a sci-fi show or movie, which would it be and why?
Xandra: One of the latest sci-fi movie soundtracks I adored was the score from “Interstellar” by Hans Zimmer. He’s one of my favorite movie composers. Aside from being a singer, I love instrumentals and think it would be cool to produce something similar in sound to that film. Any movie that’s set in space or even underwater like “The Abyss.” intrigue me.
Kendra: Back to the music real quick, other than possibly hitting up SXSW, will you be playing any shows in the coming months fans can check out?
Xandra: No set dates as of right now, but keep checking back!
Kendra: Our readers first got introduced to you thanks to your amazing Third Eye Blind cover. So if you had to make a mixtape of future contenders of songs you’d like to cover, what five would be on there?