Monday, August 25, 2014

The Music Maven's Music Monday #15: Getting to know Gemeni

The Nerdy Girlie introduced you to the twin sisters duo Gemeni after the SherlockeDCC Party at this year’s San Diego Comic Con – we instantly fell in love with their witty Sherlock inspired songs and beautiful harmonies.  I recently had a chance to interview Lisa and Gina Gomez about the challenges of the music industry, their musical influences, their sisterly bond, and maybe just a little bit about our shared love of Sherlock…
Can you tell me about the name Gemeni – does it have special meaning?
Lisa: Funny story. There was a talent show on our college campus one day. While we were filling out the form, it asked for our act's name. We had to come up with it, right on the spot so we looked at each other and said Gemini. However, the spelling...we spell it differently. There was a band in the 80's called Gemini but we love the name so much that we stuck with it and misspelled it so we wouldn't run into any copyright issues. But the real answer...We've always been branded "twins" and not as individuals and we thought it'd be ironic that that would be our band name as well.

According to your bio you’ve been performing together from a very early age – was there ever a time when you thought you’d go your separate ways and perform as solo artists?
Lisa: Absolutely not. I always knew if I wanted to do music, I'd never want to do it alone. There was a time in college that Gina had given up on music altogether and I was pursuing it alone and it was an awful few months. I eventually convinced her to join me again and I'm forever grateful.
I think people are fascinated by twins – do you think your special relationship is an advantage/disadvantage in the music world?
Gina: I've always thought of it as an advantage. There are a few twin bands out there, and a few sister bands, but it's still something that sets us apart. Not to mention our harmonies... :) However, since that alienates us, it can be tough trying to find other acts to play gigs with, whether we’re opening for them, etc.

Tell me a bit about your debut album “More Than  Me.”
Gina: More Than Me is a good mixture of the first few songs that Lisa and I had ever written. What I hope listeners get from it is that we're two vocalists who like edgy themes in pop music. A Stake in My Heart is sexy, but still different in the fact that it is very contained, very mysterious. It's asking a man to come and prove his worth. 21st Century Society is subtlety making fun of pop songs and the nature of the music industry. Goodbye is a song about betrayal and how it's not okay to hurt someone you care about. More Than Me, which our album is named after, is our ballad anthem about believing in yourself and your destiny. Not that these themes haven't been used in pop music before, but I hope it gets people to think a little more than when they listen to songs on the radio now.
You have a wide range of musical influences – who are you listening to now?
Lisa: Andy Grammar. That man is one of the nicest people I've ever met and he's a killer songwriter. I've joked to Gina that he writes the songs I wish I could write. His lyrics are just so honest. He has a song called "Holding Out For You" that talks about virginity and how he held onto it until he met the perfect girl. Wow. That takes guts to be so honest and he can sing and write a catchy melody too. He's the perfect example of a great pop artist to me.

The Nerdy Girlie Team discovered you through the Sherlock community – can you talk a bit about what Sherlock means to you and how your Sherlock inspired songs came to be?
Lisa: Sherlock is my favorite still running show. Buffy the Vampire Slayer is my favorite show ever, but, I never thought another show would take some of its attention away from Buffy, and that was Sherlock. Sherlock came to me in a very stressful part of my life. I was having severe stomach issues for several months last year and watching Sherlock was the only thing that made me calm down. I felt so indebted to that show that I even got a tattoo! I got Moriarty's "I O U" apple, not just because he's my favorite character, but because I felt like I owed that show for getting me through that awful time. But yes, Gina and I loved Sherlock's and Moriarty's relationship so much. They're completely different, yet frighteningly similar.

I've always tried to find the most complex and wonderful hero/villain relationship in any fandom that I'm in, and I finally found it in Sherlock. Not only is the writing amazing between them two, but Benedict and Andrew knock it out of the park. Their chemistry only adds fuel to the flames. In honor of that, we decided to write a song based off of that relationship. It took months to figure out the melody of the chorus of this song...the struggle to write it gave me nightmares. I wish I was kidding. I just wanted it to be perfect because I love the relationship so much. The melody finally came to me one day and then writing the song probably took 30 minutes. But of course, I can't not write a song about Sherlock and John. I love them as well. I think Moriarty and John complete Sherlock. I don't think he's entirely happy if one of them isn't in his life.

But back to John. I love the dynamic because Sherlock and John are so different, yet they find solace in each other. An unlikely pair, an unlikely duo but when they're together they make perfect sense. I really wanted to highlight the positive aspect of their relationship in the song "I've Just Got One."  What they do for each other, how they make the other's life better. We've only written two Sherlock songs but hopefully they're not the last!
Can you speak to your writing process – music or lyrics first, do you write independently?
Gina: We used to write independently a lot more but now we write together. Melody is first and foremost. Once we get a catchy hook or chorus out, then we put lyrics to the melody. Once we figure out the melodies in the verse and bridge, we put lyrics to that. And then finally, we add the music underneath all of that.
We have been experimenting lately with writing lyrics first… Some of those songs might make it into our next album!

Your hopes for Gemeni – are you working on any projects at the moment?  Do you play certain venues regularly – where can people see/hear you?
Gina: We hope to sing for as many people as humanly possible. Whether that means a recording contract or managing ourselves independently. Fame isn't the objective; it's the ability to perform as much as possible. If they go hand in hand, so be it, but we really wouldn't like that lifestyle. We’re not materialistic people or attention seekers. Right now, YouTube is where people can look for us as we plan to release more than a few music videos by the end of the year. Who knows? Maybe a super secret, super cool Sherlock video coming out soon…?

Final question – how do you think Sherlock faked his death? 
Gina: I originally thought it had something to do with the bicyclist hitting John with some of the H.O.U.N.D. gas and making him think of his greatest fear, which is to see Sherlock dead…
But when Series 3 aired the first episode “The Empty Hearse”, the second it was over, something clicked with me… I had a thought that every explanation was correct. I feel like there is some truth to every “fake” theory that was shown in the episode. I think if you combine all of them, that’s the right theory!

After Series 2, Lisa and I have always thought that Sherlock and Moriarty had this secret plan that they both were aware of. What if Sherlock thought Moriarty’s plan was brilliant, and thought it was so brilliant, he had to end the game by jumping off the roof?  What if they were both aware that they were both going to fake their suicides, and had to go through the motions of doing them? Time will tell…

Interesting theories ladies!  Huge thanks to Lisa and Gina for taking some time to answer some questions – I hope you enjoyed getting to know Gemeni a little more.  Give these fabulous ladies a listen and stayed tuned because good things are to come from this up and coming duo!

You can find Gemeni:

All photos were taken by The Nerdy Girlie at the SherlockeDCC party 2014.


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