TIFFANY GARRETT SOTOMAYOR, AKA THAT GIRL WITH DARK EYES. PHOTO COURTESY OF FMPDMM
Taking cues from electronic, melodic and notable musicians of the past and present, Barcelona-based musician Tiffany Garrett Sotomayor—better known by her stage name That Girl With Dark Eyes—creates music that she describes as “a dinner party where Daft Punk sips Blood Orange champagne with Prince and Chromeo.” Brian Eno heavily influences her moments of ambiance, while the catchier hooks bring her music into a more contemporary realm.
“I wanted it to feel modern,” TGWDE says. “Like an addition to the Drive soundtrack.”
Her single “Balloon,” which we are pleased to premiere here, feels like just that: the electronic, love-based song urges listeners to ride a balloon and go higher, evoking similar notions to Drive‘s central themes of loneliness, isolation and underlying urges that are impossible to repress. For TGWDE, there was inspiration to be found in more than just love. She found inspiration in word “balloon” itself: “There’s the celebratory side, the one we associate with parties and happiness. Then there’s the romantic [and] dreamy part, like when someone fills your bedroom with balloons,” she explains. “Finally, the freedom and anticipation [of] watching them drift into the sky.”
After many years of writing, home recording, and a few strokes of luck, TGWDE met her producer Julian Saldarriaga, the guitarist for Love of Lesbian, after a performance in a local bar. “One day in a moment of music career turmoil, I messaged him. I wanted to learn from him and to learn the reasons behind his success,” TGWDE remembers. The two had coffee and soon thereafter, Saldarriaga decided he wanted to not only produce her music, but also help with advance recordings and introduce her to the engineers behind Love of Lesbian’s Gold record. (“Balloon” was also produced by Stanley Gabriel, who’s worked with Ladyhawke, Kate Bush, and Little Boots.)
“Everything about this has been somewhat of a ‘pay it forward’ experience, made by the generosity of people in my life,” TGWDE says. “I also did a crowdfunding campaign which helped with additional costs, so it’s a collection of songs made by the people. I feel very loved and very grateful.”