Hailing from the DMV (D.C., Maryland, Virginia), April + VISTA consist of singer, songwriter, violinist and pianist April George and bassist, producer and engineer mattVISTA. Their wide-ranging influences have helped them set a foundation in creating immersive, lush soundscapes through heartfelt storytelling combined with unique production and instrumentation. Their music compels the listener to listen, feel and take a pause.
We talk about what it means to be genre-defying and how their music is centered on the theme of overcoming things in life–to feel and address pain in order to push forward and grow–best exemplified through the release of their critically acclaimed EP You Are Here.
Plus, April and Matt share how they manage their anxiety, what role spirituality has played in their lives, the power of dreams, tips on lucid dreaming, and more.
As April + VISTA get ready to share new music they’ve been working on, stay in touch with them on Instagram and Twitter. If you haven’t seen their COLORS performance of “FOMO” from the start of the year, it’s a must.
I first met April backstage at GoldLink’s show in San Francisco in 2015. I remembered her coming off stage with her violin and immediately saying hello and introducing herself to me. Good energy from the start, I remembered.
We kept in touch online, and when I moved back down to LA from the Bay in 2016, I wanted to expand my music journalism skills, so I reached out to interview her. I wrote a profile on April for OkayPlayer about her musical upbringing, her significant contributions to GoldLink’s past projects, and the special music she’s been focused on creating with Matt in April + VISTA.
We eventually reunited when I was visiting D.C. in 2017 and I got to meet Matt for the first time too. We hit it off and the rest is history. I brought them out for my first music showcase I organized last August, and I’m grateful for these two stellar individuals.
You Are Here is a project that has personally carried me through my own heavy transitions last year. The two have played a significant role in my own path in sharing my voice and following my heart in this wild industry.
April + VISTA are in their own lanes, challenging the status quo and sharing messages in their music to guide people along their own journeys.
Episode liner notes:
2:53 - what it means to create genre-defying music
4:43 - learning to embrace how low the barriers to entry are in music today
5:31 - what it means to create music that speaks to the lightness and darkness of the journey and trusting the process
7:37 - how they learned to cope with different emotions when growing up
8:24 - how pain is overlooked in music, compared to love
9:20 - we dive into some of my favorite lyrics from You Are Here e.g. “resilience is a dangerous thing, it can turn you into a fossil…”
13:31 - talking about the ego and having awareness of its presence
16:00 - creating music in the “Stresswave” period they called when creating 2016 Note to Self
20:00 - how You Are Here formed their identity and is the main foundation to grow from
20:30 - April on reflecting on how collaborating with artists like GoldLink and Sugg Savage and taught her
21:60 - reflecting on 2018 and different milestones hit–Little Dragon tour, BBC1Radio, going abroad for the first time, performing on COLORS
22:23 - grappling with anxiety with ups and downs and the pressures of holding down a day job and music
27:36 - “Think of every toxic thought or person as a pimple”
28:03 - what does their spiritual life look like
31:00 - Matt recalls one of the most powerful lucid dreaming experiences he had that taught him about the importance of boundaries
34:15 - tips on how to lucid dream
38:00 - not comparing themselves to others and more thoughts on approaching 2019
40:53 - April and Matt share their gratitude list