ZouZou Mansour of Soraia Chats With Us About Touring and More!

You guys have done a lot of touring.  How do you get ready to head out on the road?

We rehearse a ton. We run the songs a ton, and try to write at least one new one. Not only to keep things fresh for us, but also to keep us trying new things on the road, so we are developing and playing new material. Keeps us on our toes and creative and it keeps us a little more in the moment.

Other than that, I train vocally every day to keep my voice strong and healthy for the type of singing I do, and I’m sure the band does the same. Usually by the time we’re really in the flow of it, it’s time to come home.

Name one thing in your tour bag that nobody would think you’d have.

I don’t want to make anything up, but I’m finding it hard to think of anything that surprising in my bag. So I’ll just tell you a Rumi poetry book and a ridiculous supply of mismatched black socks. You never have enough. Sometimes a coloring book to keep my brain occupied with not much effort when I’m tired but can’t sleep.

What is your favorite part about going out on the road?

I don’t have to think about anything at all. There’s no time to do anything but focus on what you’re there to do. Also, I get incredible focus on my voice when I’m touring. There’s something about having no other job than to get to the next city on time and not knowing what you’ll be met with—I really love that. Keeps me feeling more alive.

And I love movement. I hate being stuck in one place. As much as I love the creature comforts of home, nothing beats movement.

Which venue is your favorite place to play and why?

I’d say Berlin in New York City – mainly because I have such great experiences there and feel connected to a different time; an alive musical time. I’m a big fan of 70’s music and fashion and artists, so I feel that energy in that room.

What is the song fans ask you to play the most?

Usually our cover of “Jolene”, or our song “Beggar”. They LOVE that song live.

Which song off Dead Reckoning do you believe will be the next fan favorite?

I really think “Why” and “Monster”. I just think that’s two sides of us that are very different, yet still us. I love listening to “Why”, and I love listening to and performing “Monster”. It just makes me want to throw myself around. “Why” is more tender, which is another side of us our fans haven’t really seen since our 2013 album,”In the Valley of Love and Guns”. I think they’re hungry to hear that tenderness, and it’s been missing on our last few releases.

If you guys could add anything to your stage show, what would it be and why?

I think I’d really like us to do a gospel-type song a cappella. We all have good voices that blend well, so I think that would be different, but really beautiful. I really like the idea of showing all sides of us. I think it’s interesting, and freeing, and I believe our fans want to hear us explore deeper, and share more deeply, all sides of ourselves. I love it when the bands I love do that, so I think that’s gotta be the way we go.

Collaborations are a big thing.  If you could collaborate with anyone alive or dead, who would it be and why?

Oh boy. I think it would be Otis Redding. This answer changes all the time because there’s so many. But Otis was such a  talent, and if you ever watch him and his band’s “Shake” performance at Monterey–you will witness Otis’s intensity and the electricity of music reaching through him. He turns me on musically, his voice, his movement—I would love to perform with him. Plus that soul. I love mixing soul and rock. It’s just so good.

If you could go back in time and give yourself advice, what would it be?

Don’t let the small things frustrate you. There will always be bad shows and worse experiences, but keep going, because there’s a light at the end of the tunnel. And it’s better than you could have hoped for or imagined.

You guys are in the middle of a tour right now but after the tour, what’s next for you?

More writing and recording. And more touring. We plan on recording a new single with a B side in January, too. We’re trying to go overseas more in our touring, and I think after touring this year, we’ll have a lot of new experiences to draw on for more music. After tour is a great time to write.

You can catch ZouZou and Soraia at Spacebar THIS Thursday.  Check out the event on Facebook for more details!

Follow Soraia on social media: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram 

Check out the video for Quicksand below!

Pre-Order Dead Reckoning now from by clicking the album cover below!


Post Author: Misty Rayburn

Misty has been doing photography since she was 18 years old and most of it has been concert / band related. In 2005, she was forced to quit due to chronic spine issues. Now she's back behind a camera and couldn't be happier!

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