SUNDAY, AUGUST 21 • 5:00PM • GRASSLANDS STAGE
"I want to be as real as I can," says rising pop hero Anna Sofia. "I don't want to have to try and hide anything from anyone -- in my music, on my social media, it's all the truth."
At just 17, the Canadian singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist has won critical acclaim, millions of streams and legions of dedicated fans for one simple reason: she's being herself. Her music is not the result of focus groups, marketing or following trends. There's no hindsight and no lecturing. She's just an artist living in the moment, reflecting life back to the same people coming of age and navigating the drama of becoming an adult -- with sophisticated but immediate indie meets R&B bangers that are totally free of pretense and bullshit, singing directly from the heart of the Gen Z experience.
Following the success of 'Self Aware Bitch,' Sofia returns with the 'Broken Perfection EP' -- a boldly promising next step for an artist coming into her own. "I'm falling in and out of love with you, we've been on pause but now we can resume," she pines of the effortless N.E.R.D.-esque groove of the title track, while there's a touch of The Cure with some streetwise pop thrown in on the summer-bop of 'Happy For You.' 'Don't Play Pretend' meanwhile, perfectly captures Sofia's bittersweet approach to pop: "I like my days with a little rain, I like my ways a bit insane, I prefer some gloom to boost my mood."
"On this EP, I'm really starting to explain my stories and open up a lot more," she says. "It talks about relationships, breaking up, being in bed and not wanting to go anywhere. It goes from one extreme to the other, from not that deep to super deep. It's just a sign of me becoming a lot more comfortable."
While determined to reach as many people as possible, Anna Sofia has no manifesto or mission statement -- just to stay true and speak to others. "I don't have a message. It's just real life," she admits. "One day, I hope to fill stadiums all over the world. I want to have fans everywhere and have some way of helping them or guiding them through my music. My confidence comes from being myself and connecting with people."