Tatiana Eva Marie Jazz’s Rising Star
Fashion and music are one of those pairings that function fine separately but whose value greatly increases when combined with the other. After all, both are forms of art and the best kind of expression. FashionEdits had the pleasure of sitting down with a talented rising star whose music is as much her own as her style. Tatiana Eva-Marie is an accomplished artist, actress, and activist, who was recently acclaimed by the Wall Street Journal as “one of the best young singers around” and included in Vanity Fair’s list of rising jazz stars, alongside Cyrille Aimée and Cécile McLorin Salvant. Give her a listen: https://youtu.be/N4zOi8h-Uds
What drew you to jazz music instead of other genres?
My parents were huge fans of old movies and musicals, and the old Disney films too, so that’s how I got into jazz at a very young age. It was the soundtrack to my childhood, really. I just found it more fun and moving then anything else. I loved the feeling of being part of a different time and reality; jazz was always an escape into dreamland for me. What artists—not limited to music—would you consider major influencers/ inspirations? When I was a child, I was obsessed with Marilyn Monroe, both as a singer and actress. I thought that everything she did – the way she moved, sang, spoke – was at the same time charmingly awkward, graceful and powerful. In jazz, I could name Tommy Dorsey, Louis Prima, young Frank Sinatra, Lee Morse and Rose Marie… to name just a few. As for inspiration in a broader sense, I was always inspired by anything that emanated from the College of ‘Pataphysics, such as the writings and art of Boris Vian, Max Ernst, Jacques Prévert, Man Ray and other French existentialists/surrealists.
Given that jazz is a more mature sound, in what ways is your music relatable to various age groups?
Actually, I’ve noticed in the past few years that my audiences are always very varied. Following the exposure of younger generations to jazz through popular series like Boardwalk Empire, Mad Men, or films like Woody Allen’s Café Society and Midnight in Paris, or even The Great Gatsby and Lala Land, I’ve been seeing an ever increasing number of 20-somethings at my shows. I think many young people want to find other ways of socializing that don’t include tinder or clubbing, so they have turned to live music venues and swing dancing. I think we are all in need of more romance right now, and jazz is a perfect type of music for that: it is ageless and has never really gone out of style since its creation. It remains hip and accessible to all age groups, which is fabulous because it bridges a gap between generations and brings us all together. That’s actually what I love most about it: it’s a party and everyone is invited.
If you could collaborate with any popular artist today, who would it be and why?
I don’t keep in touch with top 40 pop culture, because most of it doesn’t resonate with me, but there are many less famous artists, or locally famous artists that I respect and admire. I would love to collaborate with Vince Giordano and The Nighthawks, who won a Grammy for their work on Boardwalk Empire. I’ve had the pleasure of singing with his band a couple of times and it was always a thrill. In visual art, I’ve had my eye on the work of the CANADA collective, which created music videos for popular bands such as She & Him and Oh Land. I love their dreamy, surrealist style and I would be very inspired to explore that kind of aesthetic.
How would you describe your personal style? What’s your go to look?
I am a no-fuss kind of girl, so my “go-to look” in the more clement months will be prairie dresses and flower patterns, something I can easily slip into and be out the door, but still has the vintage 1930s flair I love without too much trouble. I will usually add a big hat or bold colorful sunglasses. In the cold months, I can indulge in my obsession for vintage wool and fur coats. I also enjoy creating a more androgynous look with a suit vest, jacket and bowtie. I make my own bowties on my 1952 Singer Ambassador sewing machine; I have around fifty, probably, with different patterns. I rarely wear black, I always prefer anything big, bold, bright and garish, with patterns, and anything that would seem mismatched at first glance but somehow works. That’s my heaven right there.
Where are your favorite places to shop?
I’ve hardly bought anything brand new in the past couple of years. I get most of my clothes from vintage stores. In New York, my favorite spots are Beacon’s Closet and Urban Jungle, where I get my performance outfits. When I am in Europe, I visit Blackout II in London for 1930s dresses and I get my perfume from Serge Lutens in Paris. When I want to splurge for something special, I look through the Manoush catalogue; I am in love with that designer.
Finish this sentence: I never leave the house without__________________.
My red lipstick! My mom is a hippie and doesn’t believe in makeup, but my grandma was adamant and taught me that bright red lips jazz up any outfit anytime, from pajamas to ball gowns. Lipstick has been my best friend since I was thirteen.