Ana Maria Botero of RottViolent Interview

10405442_712094898867779_3392257374574041023_nEve’s Scene talks to Ana Maria Botero about how the band started, what inspires her and how she and Pablo Carlosama left everything behind to chase their dreams to start the band  RottViolent (Formerly Portrait): Eve’s Scene: When you began the band I read about your starting off with Pablo. It seems you have found a pretty great partnership. How did that come about? Ana: We met back in 2005 at a university in Bogota. We were both working on our individual musical projects. Then we met up in the studio and found out that our projects had many similarities in style. I was also looking for a new guitarist because I was not happy with the one in my project. I thought he was perfect for what I was looking for and we mixed our projects and that is how Portrait began. Eve’s Scene: How did you come up with the band name? Ana: The band name is his (Pablo) idea completely. I’ve asked him many times where it came from. The answer is as simple as he just came up with that word in his mind one day. He has always thought that is the name he wanted for the band. I stick with that idea and that is why the band is named Portrait. Eve’s Scene: When you develop music what is your process? Ana: Pablo writes the songs and builds up the guitar riffs and basic drums. The drummer builds on what Pablo started and after that I make the vocals and do all the lyrics and that is how it works. Basically Pablo is the main focus of ideas and that is where every song starts. Eve’s Scene: What is the scene like in London? Is it competitive with you being a female lead as compared to a male leads? Ana: It is very competitive. The amount of bands that are here is overwhelming and I have seen many bands with female vocalists. I would have to say it is really hard to win a place in the London scene. The reason we ended up here is because the producer, Russ Russell, is from England and has many contacts. We wanted to be near the people we know to gain our band success. Eve’s Scene: When it came to your dreams as a musician and a female lead singer who was your biggest supporters when you were starting out? Ana: I would have to say I didn’t have much support from my family. I started in Columbia when girls were not much in the music scene and I started in a metal band. I was a female vocalist in a metal band which was completely new in that time which was 1995 or 96. It was new, I was on my own, I didn’t have much support from my family and I was very independent with my musical projects. I wanted to move on with a more mainstream project and started on my own. I had support from my friends and that is basically it. Eve’s Scene: Are there any female lead vocalists that inspire you? Ana: I have been singing all my life and it has been a part of my life since I have been little. If I have to name a person or girl who was my inspiration I would say Anneke van Giersbergen from the Netherlands and was in a band name The Gathering which is very well known in the metal world. It’s more of a progressive rock sound. She is amazing and has the most amazing voice I have ever heard and she is my inspiration. Eve’s Scene: Tell us about the first song you wrote. Ana: I started singing in the school choir and then in the university choir. My first creative piece of music was back in the band I was singing for in Columbia. I have never been too much into creating the music. Just the lyrics and the voices and I love making different voices and arrangements. That is my field and I am really not interested in making the whole song. I like to have a basis or somebody who can make the basic cords for a song and I love to build from that on the voice. Eve’s Scene: What is your most memorable performance? 533990_510897872320817_1086863791_nAna: I would say two. One with Portrait here in London at The Underworld because it was amazing and a perfect night. Another one would be when my band, back in Columbia, opened a show for Megadeth and it was a huge concert with many people. Being the supporting act for a band like Megadeth is pretty impressive. Eve’s Scene: That leads into my next question. If you could tour with anyone who would it be and why? Ana: That’s a tough question. There is many and I would love touring with Nine Inch Nails. We are not the same kind of band but Pablo’s huge influence is Nine Inch Nails. It would be like a dream come true and I really like the band. Another band would be Flyleaf and I would really love to be a supporting act for them. She is amazing and I completely admire her. Eve’s Scene: In the article I wrote about three songs but wanted to save Becoming for the interview since along with Buried Alive it is my favorite. Would you like to share a little aboutBecoming and even Buried Alive as to how those songs came about and what they mean to you and the band? Ana: Buried Alive is the EP and the lyrics reveal a girl which is very angry with somebody who has caused her so much pain. She feels like it is her time to make him pay for everything he has done to her. It is loaded with anger and inner strength. All of our songs are about feelings, emotions and situations. Becoming is nicer because it is not as Buried Alive. It’s more of a redemption song of two lovers. The girl wants to feel like heaven when she is around him and a feeling of wanting to become one with her lover. It is a very inspirational song with love even though she is not getting the same from him. It is about the very passionate and mortal love that the girl is feeling. Eve’s Scene: On the site it says Portrait is currently looking forward to recording a long awaited new album by 2012, as well as signing their first record deal. Ana: We have not found a record deal and are planning on releasing an album independently. We are going to start the pre-production process in November. Then we will start recording by next year. We would be really happy to find support from any record label mainly for distribution. That is what we are going to do our next album. We have been doing everything ourselves and using money from our own pockets. It is very expensive paying for the recording sessions. We are not from here and to make a life here is very expensive but we hope to keep going on this. It is really hard but worth it. Whenever I write a song I’ve tried to write something different but I can’t. I write about my emotions and what about the song makes me write. I don’t think about social issues because it doesn’t flow naturally. I go with my feelings and with what I feel about the song and mostly it’s about love, fear, anger, beautiful feelings, redemption, forgiveness. This is what the songs are about. Eve’s Scene: What are a few of the most unique songs/artists I would find on your MP3 or in your cd collection? Ana: Unique artists, I would say The Gathering. It’s unique because they have developed a very progressive and unique sound. Eve’s Scene: What is the biggest challenge as a band? Ana: Every day is a challenge because we basically left everything that we had and were able to build in our lives in Columbia. We are trying to build up everything every day. Leaving your country and trying to chase your dreams in another is a huge challenge. Being in a foreign country you try making money off of any job you can find and trying to as well succeed in the music scene is a huge challenge and is not as easy as it sounds. Eve’s Scene: Is there any advice you can give other aspiring female artists? Ana: Music is a very competitive scene. More than you can imagine. My advice would be to keep going, be strong and patient. I believe there is no easy way and I really admire the girls getting out there singing in a band. I was pioneering back in my country and it was a really big step and I encourage the girls to keep doing it and I believe us girls are the souls of bands. Eve’s Scene: Is there anything else you would like to add? Ana: I would really love if everyone would listen to our EP that is available on Amazon and iTunes. We also have our web site InsidePortrait.com. I would like to encourage people to listen to the new project which, to be honest, I love it because I think it has the perfect mixture of all the things I’ve ever liked. It has strong guitars, very powerful and catchy voices, electronic and industrial sounds. It is the perfect mixture of what I like. Thanks to you and Ugly Scene for the support. You have been amazing. I have seen what it’s published on the site. Thank you so very much and in our situation and every bands situation it’s very valuable all the support and you guys have been amazing to us and we are very grateful. Eve’s Scene: Your welcome! It was lovely speaking to you and thank you so much for your time. I had a great time speaking with you. - Michelle Lynn For more information: Facebook iTunes  Amazon  Spotify 

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