Interview with Yura Madara of Jenlayn

 

- Hello Yura, we are glad to have you! Please introduce yourself for our readers.

Hello, I’m Yura Madara, singer and lyrics writer in a Finnish visual rock band Jenlayn.

- How long have you been with Jenlayn?

Um… I guess from somewhere around February?

- What did you do before you were a part of this band?

I had a solo-project going on for about 4 years

- Have you worked with other groups before, or done any solo work? If so could you please tell us more?

Mostly solo-stuff

- How long have you been singing – have you ever had formal training?

I’ve been singing for as long as I can remember. When I was about 6 I listened to my mom’s CD’s (Madonna and Lenny Kravitz mostly) and sang along to them. I’ve had a few vocal-lessons, but mostly been training myself through sheer hard work!

- You have a nice vocal range – what vocal part do you sing most comfortably?

Thank you! And I’m still improving! Well, not too high and not too low I guess, it also depends on the song I’m singing.

- Who are your musical influences?

Well Madonna from a very young age, then I had my 80′s music phase (like W.A.S.P. and Skid Row) and punk-music phase (The Sex Pistols, Patti Smith, Magazine etc) and nowadays I get most influence from Miyavi, The GazettE, MERRY, Ayumi Hamasaki, Buck Tick and Tori Amos.

- And outside of music, who or what has inspired you?

Disney movies! And I’ve always had great respect for my dad. Mom too, but dad above all.

- What is your favorite part of being a musician – what inspires you to do this?

I’ve always loved to sing and I also like to perform whenever I can, for an audience or just for friends. I’m not that into fame, though I think it would be great to perform to a large audience who really want to be there, to listen to us, be moved by our music and just have fun with us there.

- How long have you been studying music as a whole?

Well I pretty much suck at music theory. I’ve taught myself singing, guitar and piano so I pretty much made my own guidelines. I can’t even read notes! But that’s okay.

- What does music mean to you?

It’s a release from the burdens of the moment. Happy and sad times revisited and shared. It’s such a big part of my everyday life, that I can’t imagine living without music.

- On Jenlayn’s homepage your personal quote reads “I’m a movie freak.” Which movies are your favorites?

Oh dear, that’s a tough one! I like so many, like Miyazaki movies, then “Where the wild things are”, “Memoirs of a Geisha”, “Harry Potters”, “Silent Hill”, “Broken Saints”, “Lady Vengeance”, “Black Swan”, “Inland Empire”, “Mulholland Drive”, “I’m a robot but that’s okay”, “A.I.”, “Let me in”… just to name a few!

- You’ve also described your personality as “pseudo seahorse” – Care to explain that to your fans?

Gosh! Okay, I just got this weird metaphor one day. You know, with seahorses, the male carries the little seahorses, so he’s a pseudo female, and since I’m always mistaken for a girl, I just got these words into my head: “pseudo seahorse”; an androgynous pseudo female. I don’t know if that cleared anything but that’s how it works with me, heh

- Your English is quite good. How long have you been studying English?

Ever since I grabbed one of those Madonna CD’s as a kid

- You’re learning Japanese as well. How much do you know so far?

Very little, just a few words and sentences from here and there. I simply have no time to really study it.

- I hear you have swords. What sort of collection do you have? Do you have any other weapons?

I wonder who told you…… okay well I have a kind of an ornamental short-sword, two sais and a replica of Sephiroth’s sword!

- Are you interested in fashion?

Nope! I like what I like, whether it’s fashion or not.

- What is your favorite song?

Oh my… um.. There’re too many of those as well. But just to name one, The GazettE LEECH

- How do you balance your personal life with your band activities?

It’s sometimes difficult with the little time I have outside work, but so far so good.

- I hear you work with children. Do you ever use music when working with them?

Well I taught some of my class’s boys to play a few simple guitar chords, some really got into it! And last week we listened to songs from youtube.

- If you weren’t a musician, what would you be?

I’ve no idea. An actor?

- Tell us something that many people do not know about you.

I’m a sponsor for an Indian child through World Vision.

- Thank you very much for the interview. Is there anything else you’d like to say to your fans?

Thanks for all your support and compliments! I’ve been really moved by you all!


Learn more about Jenlayn – check them out on their Official Home Page and Facebook


 

This interview was conducted by Kaitlin Maginnis (Rain)