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Interview: Rising Dream-Pop Artist Yana Unveils “Don’t Want Your Love”

Rising dream-pop artist Yana released her first single of the year, “Don’t Want Your Love.”

“Don’t Want Your Love” arrives only a few months after Yana shared her debut single, “Like It,” in September. Both songs are actually the first taste of Yana’s debut EP, coming later this year! So, if you haven’t listened to her music yet, you need to do so! Her splendid vocals, accompanied by heartfelt lyrics and touching music, are a flawless combination. Her vibes offer a little bit of pop, R&B, and even some Soul! 

Get to Know Yana

Born in Varna, Bulgaria, and raised in Long Beach, California; 23-year-old Yana captures the intimacy of poignant pop lyricism and ear-wormy melody to create the dream-pop of tomorrow with her smooth and sultry vocal tone. After emigrating with her family from a post-socialist and economically corrupt Slavic Europe and finding refuge in the United States, Yana fell in love with the creative freedom that music provided and dedicated the majority of her growing years to developing her sonic style.

In early 2019, she teamed up with Halsey drummer/producer Franco Reid to begin writing her EP Hindsight. The second single from the project, “Don’t Want Your Love” describes the unfulfilling end of a relationship; the kind that leaves you only with questions. Yana is able to encapsulate the feeling of post-breakup confusion and yearning with a hooking melody you won’t be able to forget.


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Interview Time! Yana’s Beginnings

What made you want to start making your own music?

“Growing up, I remember listening to songs on the radio and finding ways to change them in my head. Messing with the melodies, choosing different lyrics, anticipating the chord changes. I had a background in classical piano and vocal training, so I’ll admit that some of it was out of habit; but I couldn’t shake the feeling of wanting to make something on my own. Once I started putting pen to paper (figuratively, I suppose) it all seemed to fall into place. It started as a way to bring the melodies in my head to life and soon became a fulfilling and liberating form of self-expression.”

The Meaning Behind “Don’t Want Your Love”

Yana, can you tell me that’s the inspiration/meaning behind “Don’t Want Your Love?” 

“When I was 20, I was in a complicated “situationship” that left me confused and moderately heartbroken when it ended. It didn’t last long enough for me to see the full picture, so I ruminated about what could have been for a long time. A few months passed, and I still felt the longing but also recognized that what we had together wasn’t strong enough to keep holding on. The first idea I had for the song was the line ‘I don’t want your love so I don’t know what I miss that much’ and the rest unfolded from there.”

“I wrote the chorus in my bedroom and left the song untouched for months before I felt ready to write the rest. If I was meant to finish a song about finding closure; I needed more time. In early 2019 I posted a clip of me playing the song on piano on Instagram, and it caught the attention of someone who soon became my close friend and collaborator, Franco Reid, who asked to finish it with me.” 

Her Debut EP Hindsight is on the Way

Is there anything you can tell us about your upcoming debut EP Hindsight? 

“As an homage to my cultural roots and musical influences, Hindsight is made up of four songs total — three laid-back pop tracks and one modern interpretation of a well-known traditional Bulgarian folk song, “Zaidi, Zaidi.” I chose the name because it felt true to the themes explored in each of the four songs. In “Like It,” the first single release, my attempt at rationalizing loneliness leads me to discover that it’s just a front for self-preservation.”

Don’t Want Your Love looks back in time for closure, recalling memories from a relationship long gone. The EP, coming later this year, explores the feelings of nostalgia and self-reflection, and captures the intimacy between the piano and the voice in a pop-inspired structure with minimal arrangement. Three out of the four songs were recorded in Los Angeles with producers Franco Reid and Jon Joseph. We teamed up with producer Charlie Stavish to record the remaining Bulgarian song at the Clock Tower Recorder in Joshua Tree.” 

Yana’s Dream Collaborations

Lastly, who are your musical influences? Which artist would you love to have a collaboration with?

“I think I’ve always been particularly pop-oriented in nature, with a little pop/r&b, so I have a soft spot for early albums from Justin Timberlake, Rihanna, Usher, and Nelly Furtado, among others. I find myself thinking of their music when I’m writing my own, probably because I’m chasing the feeling that their songs give me. While recording the EP, I was influenced by artists like The Japanese House, The Fray, and Imogen Heap, whose arrangements all inspired various elements of production in my songs. In the future, I would love to collaborate with H.E.R. or Lennon Stella, both of whom catalogues I adore.”

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