FARA: New release on its way

By Chris Tyrone Ross

Reprinted with permission from
Saskatchewan Sage - July 1999 - pg. 4

FaraWho is Fara? If you don't know she's Saskatchewan's own Native pop diva. At only 26, she has made a career out of singing and has become quite successful. Here is an interview that reveals the beautiful woman behind the beautiful voice.

She has found singing as a way to send a positive message to First Nations youth. For example, listen to "Walk Away" on her first album, This is my World.

"It's a song about never walking away from your dreams and your beliefs, standing up for what you believe in and sharing that with others. And following a path that's true to your heart," explained Fara during the beginning of the interview.

Born in North Battleford, raised in Vancouver, and now residing on the Saulteaux reserve, Fara has lived a life where singing has become her career. Her first album received great reviews when it first came out. She has performed at the National Aboriginal Achievement Awards, and for many National Basketball Association games in the past two years.

In the summer of 1999 her second album, Pretty Brown, is expected to be released. Sage received a copy just before press time. A review will be available in a future edition. In the months to come, people should expect to hear a lot more about Fara. She is soon to be in the spotlight as a nationally known Native artist.

Sage: Would you date someone younger than you?

FARA: No, because I'm already taken.

Sage: During the production of Pretty Brown what did you do differently as opposed to your first album?

FARA: Last album I wrote 80 per cent of all the songs and co-wrote the rest. This album I only ended up writing four songs, the other ones are written by my producers. The reason for that is because I ended up liking the songs they were giving me.

Sage: What kept you motivated to pursue your singing career?

FARA: Well, I loved singing so much that it's always been a dream and that fire has never really died. There's times I've put a lot of energy and focus into my work, and there's times that I don't, where I lose my focus and I dream about it. The major motivation is just that I love singing so much that I'd never wanted to give up.

Sage: Let's talk about the way your music sends positive messages to the Native youth. The next album is dropping soon. How is it different from your first?

FARA: It's more mature. The first album was very experimental. I wasn't exactly sure of the sound I wanted yet. I wanted to reach the community and share my voice too, but the second album I put more energy and focus into it. It's more persuasive and it's more to my taste. My second album has two songs that touch on Native issues which are "Pretty Brown" and "To Bring Back Yesterday." "Pretty Brown" is my personal experience growing up in a community where there was a majority of non-Native people and how I overcame my feelings of lack of pride. The second album has inspirational messages. There's a song called "Beautiful Spirit." There's songs of heartache, laughter, rejoicing, healing, fun dance songs. It's a very positive album.

Sage: Are there any other artists that you or others compare your music to?

FARA: Oh, of course. One person said that I sound like k.d. lang. Another said I sound like Celine Dion or Whitney Houston or Toni Braxton.

Sage: What about Cher?

FARA: Nope, never heard anyone say Cher.

Sage: Did you hear her last song, "Believe?"

FARA: Yah, she's actually No. 1 everywhere. I just read Billboard Magazine.

Sage: What do you think of Lauryn Hill?

FARA: I like Lauryn Hill.

Sage: So are you going to drop a new video soon?

FARA: I have a video that's ready to be released. It's still promoting my first album. We're in the process of finishing my second album so we can have the final project, and based on that, we can decide what single and what video to release first. Hopefully the first single will be, "Pretty Brown." As of now, we are still not sure of how things are going to happen.

Sage: Where do you see yourself in five years?

FARA: In five years time, I'll probably have released five albums, be on the Juno nominations and get a couple of those instead of just getting nominated, travel all over Canada, brake into the States. That's five years time. That's possible. If I put in three years of hard work, I think I can accomplish all of that.

Sage: Do you value education?

FARA: For sure, I think education is great. It's good to get an education, but not everyone is gonna use that education. But our Native people are going to have to survive on into the future in order to maintain a stronger nation.

Sage: Have you ever considered another field of work?

FARA: Of course, after I finish with music, I want to be a teacher and teach music and my own history or get a degree in music and teach it out of my home, teaching it to other youth coming up. I'd teach them singing lessons as well as the business itself. I really wouldn't mind having my own studio and just being a writer, writing music and then shopping it to other artists.

Sage: Finally, do you have any positive messages that you would like to share with the youths?

FARA: I'd say, believe in yourself, believe in your dreams, don't let anyone stop you. Follow your heart, try to search for the truth in all things. There's a lot of awareness that needs to be raised out there and myself . . . I looked at life, not really looking at things roughly. In regards to career and ambition living your life. The best thing for me has been to follow my heart and try and live the best way I can. I would say to the youth trying to be singers, actors, chiefs, doctors . . . is to surround themselves around positive people who will tell them how to succeed. If you can have perseverance and persistence and really try hard, that's another good thing. Another thing I would like to say to youth trying to pursue a dream is . . . don't stop dreaming, wake up and do it.

This interview originally appeared in Generation X. It is reprinted with permission.

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