Falon Sierra: A Capitol Hill Block Party Highlight

There are those performers that you see for the first time and you instantly know that they are going to be a big deal. It’s more than the music— it’s an effortless ability to create an experience for the audience and evoke emotion from otherwise guarded first-time spectators. In the dimly lit basement that is Barboza in Seattle, Falon Sierra did just that. With the smooth sway of her figure rocking to the powerful melodies of her vocals the entire room swayed with her— until the mic went out. This is when most artists would freeze and the mood would be lost, but not for Falon. She didn’t miss a beat. Bellowing each verse with an intensity that could be felt all the way up the stairs and showing everyone in attendance just how incredible her vocal range is. Falon Sierra kept singing as someone from the venue popped on stage to fix what had caused the disconnect.

After a performance like that we knew we had to find out more about this inspiring artist and you should too. Check out what she had to say about her past, present and future below!

RIZE Entertainment: So first and foremost, what an incredible performance! There was one moment where it seemed as though your mic was turned off and you just kept singing/performing until someone came up and fixed the issue. What went through your head in that moment?

Falon Sierrra: I was like, “Holy shit, whoops.” I don’t know. Sometimes mess ups happen and I’ve always just been taught to just always keep going, always keep performing, because I’d done a lot of musicals as a kid. So, it was kind of drilled in my head to never stop and never let them see that it was kind of a mess up, kind of make it look like it was was on purpose. So, I just tried to just keep going.

 

Your song Mr. Prez has gotten a lot of attention. It’s not secret that our current POTUS is racist. Let’s be real. What was the breaking point for you that inspired you to create this song?

I definitely think the breaking point was him winning the election. At that point, I was really, really, really angry, like, “How did this happen? How did people not vote for Hillary?” I was in shock, so I think at that moment, I was like, “Wow, the next four years are going to be horrible.”

Then, I got a beat from somebody and I didn’t know what I was going to write, but thought I heard gunshots outside right as I was listening to that beat. That’s kind of like how I thought the whole world was going to be for the next four years, so then I started to write that song that night. I think it wasn’t too long after his election that I wrote that song, but I didn’t release it for a few months.

 

You produced your song Zero by yourself on Goodwill bought keyboard (taking Macklemore’s Thrift Shop to a whole other level). Is production also something that you’ve always wanted to do? Have you ever learned how to produce from friends or school?

Yeah, I’ve always wanted to do it. I never knew how or how to go about it, but luckily, my engineer at the time had told me, “Yo, whatever you want to play, I can help you translate what you’re playing and then put it on the computer. You can tell me what you want exactly,” so he kind of gave me the inspiration and the hope that I could actually do it, because I’m not really computer savvy at all.

So, I got the keyboard. I could play stuff on the piano and keyboard. I could play a little bit of acoustic, but I never knew how to put that onto a computer. So, once he said that I could do that, I was like, “Okay, I’m going to try.”

Photo by: Evergreen Dazed

You were in a lot of musicals until high school. When you were a kid singing in these musicals did you ever see a future in musical theatre for yourself? Was that a goal?

Yeah, yeah. I really, really wanted to be on Broadway. I thought it was really cool to sing, act,  and dance and do a local production. That was really amazing to me. I got out of it because I started to just want to express myself more, but recently I’ve been kind of wanting to do another musical. It’s been a while, but I kind of want to do one.

What musicals were you in?  

The Waves and this show called How Do You Like a Child was one of my first shows and Oliver. Oh, it was so long ago. I was in Ida, and Hairspray, Dream Girls. Oh yeah, Little Shop of Horrors. There’s a lot. I don’t know.

You’ve said that your whole family sings including your sister and brother— is there any chance fans will hear a song featuring you and your siblings in the future?

Yeah. I think there’s definitely a chance. I think the biggest chance is hearing a song with me and my son and possibly my sister because we sometimes mess around. The other day, I was messing around and I was like, “Oh, we should definitely make this into something.”

Photo courtesy of Falon Sierra

In interview with KEXP you mention created own visuals. Can you tell me more about that?

Yeah. I’m really interested in creating in my own way. When I got my laptop, I instantly downloaded a video app and I just started recording a lot of stuff on my phone. I kind of just started making videos and I was like, “Hmm, this isn’t that bad to me, I guess.” So, it makes it more interesting I think when I post random videos than just a picture, so I think it’s cool to have … I don’t know, because always in my mind, there’s always a big visual, so I try to just recreate that with my cheap phone and cheap video app as much as I can.

You’ve said that you “don’t practice that much because you can’t practice how you’re going to feel on stage.” For most people it takes practice to become that comfortable on stage but for you it seems effortless and people love it— so what’s next? Are you working on anything new? Any shows or other festivals coming up? Where can people catch you?!

Yeah. I just started to work on an album that I’m kind of nervous about, but I think it’s going to take a long time because I’m really slow at writing, and then until November at Freakout Fest in Ballard, which is a part of KEXP I believe. So, yeah, I’m expecting this album to release late 2019.

Luna Reyna

Luna Reyna (she/ella) is the founder of RIZE Entertainment. She has worked in radio, in print for multiple magazines and with too many digital media platforms to count. She is deeply invested in shifting power structures and centering the work and voices of marginalized communities within the industry.