Noa is back on the road, presenting “Genes and Jeans”, a new album that combines actual fusion and her Yemeni and Hebrew roots. Born in Israel, she was very young when her family moved to New York. Back to Israel on holiday, she fell in love with Asher; they have two children, Ayehli and Enea. She lives in Tel Aviv, well, that when she’s not touring around the world…

Fannybrice: “Genes and Jeans”. It’s like going back to “Manhattan-Tel Aviv” plus Yemen; we all wear jeans but shouldn’t ignore where we come from, among other things, can we?

Noa: Yes 🙂 we can ignore, but why? There is so much strength in learning about your roots and accepting them, in embracing your family, in understaning that you are only part of a chain. Especially in today’s global village, full of facebooks and myspaces and youtubes and whatnot. I think learning the depth of your own voice is important, lest you get swept away in the avalanche!

Fannybrice: These songs sound to me more like the first albums published in Israel, with a wonderful production. Where do they come from, how did you and Gil work on them?

Noa: Thanks. they are ‘homegrown’. We worked at home, and produced the material ourselves with no external intervention. That’s probably what we should have done long ago, but record companies always insisted on external producers form the US or the UK. The only exception was Pat Metheny, who was our choice, not theirs. Now that the record company presence is almost gone, we are free to do as we please. Gil Dor did an amazing job with the musical production of this album.

Fannybrice: The record business has changed very much during these last years. Now the music reaches every corner of the world in a few seconds. Aren’t the real charts now in the online download statistics?

Noa: Yes, things have changed and there are many repercussions, like what I wrote in the last answer. There are lots of problems but also lots of opportunities. We feel lucky to have come to the public’s attention when there was still a record company to support us. We worked very well with the Spanish office of Universal, Jose Puig, Alicia, Marta, Carlos Ituinio..these are people to which I owe my career in spain. Now I am strong enough to continue somehow alone. If I had to start today, I don’t know what I would have done.

Fannybrice: Noa, to means a perfect mix of voice, music, lyrics and, of course, Gil and Zohar (who doesn’t take part of this tour). And, most of all, you never disappoint in a concert live, even working with the flu… Any magic potion for stage work?

Noa: Yes. It’s called LOVE. 🙂

Fannybrice: A night in May 2005, eating “pinchos” and mushrooms around the Old Hood in Donostia, the Solis, Gil, Zohar and Asher around; do you still enjoy meeting friends before or after the concerts?

Noa: One of the great gifts of my career is the friends I’ve made all over the world. In fact, I judge a town by my friends there, not the architechture or the landscape, not even by the food I love so much! 🙂 You, for example, are one of the reasons I love Donostia 🙂

Fannybrice: From the Pope John Paul II to Clinton. You’ve been with people we ordinary citizens will never be able to reach. Are you aware of the responsibilities of being an icon of peace?

Noa: Yes. I am very aware. I admit the horrible things that have been going on in the middle east for the past 2 years, from the last Lebanon war to the Gaza war have made me very depressed. Sometimes I lose hope, I lose faith in humanity, I see so much brutality and hatred everywhere it’s appalling. And so much ignorance. I just close my eyes and sing.

Fannybrice: The Middle-East was a bit more relaxed before the last Bush era. Will Obama and the Democrats bring back calm and dialogue, or at least some hope?

Noa: I sure hope so! I believe in Obama. He is a great man.

Fannybrice: A milestone; at the Palau in Barcelona, the encores; Serrat entering the stage for a duet, singing “Es caprichoso el azar”. From Joan Manuel to Stevie Wonder: You’re a privileged artist, aren’t you?

Noa: Very privileged.

Fannybrice: You’ve travelled many tours with Asher and the kids, but I’m sure this cannot happen this way all the time. Is it easy to combine your international shows with motherhood?

Noa: It’s the hardest thing in the world, combining a career with motherhood. I am constantly manoeuvring, planning, producing, improvising, compensating. I couldn’t do it without the help if my husband asher and my wonderful parent, david and tamar. It’s crazy. But it’s worth it!!

Fannybrice: Three show-stoppers: Mishaela, Keren-Or and Child of Man. They’ve improved with the years and spread some contagious optimism. Which are your favorite songs anyway?

Noa: Ooh, no answer for that one. Many songs I love! My favourites change with the mood, with the tide, with the weather, with the news, with the years. 🙂

Fannybrice: Thank you very much, Achinoam. See you in Donostia!

Calle 14 © 2009