Lorely Rodriguez is a former Allstonian who now lives in Brooklyn and sings with experimental pop group Celestial Shore. Most recently, she has also started a solo recording project, EMPRESS OF, posting 1-minute YouTube videos she calls “colorminutes” -- snippets of her gorgeous, ethereal pop songs set to different color screens. Rodriguez's project is an intriguing approach to recording and releasing music; a rare instance where the manipulation of social media feels like a refined element of the artistic process, rather than just an easy mode of self-promotion. "Colorminutes" are only teasers of forthcoming tracks. The song below, "Don't Tell Me", is the first complete 3-minute Empress Of single; its slow-building, atmospheric refrain is captivating. (There's a matching "colorminute" demo version, too.) Since hearing this song a couple of weeks ago, I've found myself on more than one occassion listening to it on repeat for hours. I wanted to learn more about this entire project, so I asked Rodriguez a few questions about it -- read on for our interview, and to stream some of her excellent sound-bites.
Can you tell me about what inspired the "colorminutes" you've been posting online? It seems like an interesting way to capture listeners in our culture of short attention spans. Did that factor in to the idea for colorminutes at all?