InterviewLocal

Danny Schiller fuses Spanish and American cultures in his music

From jamming in a car with the family to singing in his high school choir, Brown University graduate Danny Schiller has been singing for as long as he could remember. That being said, it’s hard to believe he only broke into recording music with his first single “Lo in Between” in May of 2019. 

Schiller was born and raised in Chicago but identifies a lot with his Spanish origin. Growing up, he traveled back and forth from the U.S. and Spain with his family, which profoundly affected his views on music. Because of it, Schiller writes and sings in English and Spanish. Whenever he is writing music, he explains he is not purposefully trying to include Spanish, but it simply comes out. 

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“I will be speaking English and sometimes there are words that fit better into the space that happen to be in Spanish,” said Schiller. “If it comes out in Spanish and fits better, then why not.”

Even if people do not understand, he said, they might like how it sounds and it could be used as a learning opportunity for those who do not understand the language. “It is more inclusive and more acceptable to other people as well, so it’s kind of like a win-win,” said Schiller. 

Start in Music

For most solo artists, it’s definitely scary to take that leap into creatively working on your own, but for Schiller, he was willing to make the jump to fulfill his musical cravings. He started making music while at Brown and has since been dedicated to continuing that his journey through the quarantine and post-graduation. Although Schiller did not study music, it was imperative for him to give himself some time to perfect his craft. 

Schiller studied international relations at Brown and believed that studying music would be counterintuitive since music was his escape, and he did not want it to be the source of his stress. Schiller said it would inevitably become his source of stress because at the end of the day, that’s what school is; an obligation for him to get through. Now that he is taking music more seriously, it’s becoming more of an obligation, but it is something he loves to do naturally. He said he wouldn’t be getting the same enjoyment out of it if he had studied it at school. 

 “Studying music on my own terms and listening to the music I want to listen to, I think that’s most useful to me as an escape mechanism and having more cathartic experiences,” said Schiller.

“I reached a point where I was tired of seeing other people’s things. . . I wanted to have the experience of creating something with my own mind and my heart.” — Danny Schiller 

With the right connections and communication through Rhode Island’s music scene, he believed he could find a proper style he was comfortable with and one that he thought other people could enjoy too. He was committed to finding producers that fit the same vibe he wanted while also figuring out how to utilize the studio and the technology he needed to accomplish it. 

“Anywhere you are, other people are on the same creation wave that you are, it’s just a matter of finding them,” said Schiller. “If you are putting yourself out there and going to shows and concerts, communicating with other people about your love for music and art, you will eventually find someone. Everyone does art in some way.”

Schiller’s fanbase is growing rapidly because of his artistry and music. Although he only has a few singles out, he’s working to build a proper release. Schiller’s music style includes a mix of different genres such Latin pop mixed with R&B. Songs like “Verocai” have Daniel Caesar vibes but with a Spanglish twist in the lyrics—paired with a falsetto touch and dreamy feel. 

Influences

Schiller lists Caesar and others as influences to his music, describing his sound as a crazy mix between Caesar and Spanish singer-songwriter Rosalia. Schiller’s also inspired by a lot of R&B music and said he focuses his music and vocals more toward that genre. He explained it as a combination of different sources of art. His instrumentals are a mix of some Spanish influences with percussion styles to bossa nova Brazilian influence in guitar. A culmination of sources that work well with each other.

All things considered, Schiller’s music varies by mood. You could dance to his tracks “Reina” or “Lo in Between,” or just simply vibe out to “Verocai.”  The latter was released with a lyric music video, where you see Schiller calmly riding his bike throughout Providence. It really instills a pensive state of mind, and just puts you on another comfort level. 

While Schiller continues to move forward with his music, he is learning to play the guitar more and is writing with different people to improve his art. He plans and looks forward to releasing more music and you can stay in the know through his Instagram @dannyschilla. His music is available on all streaming services. 

Even though it’s a crazy world right now, Schiller encourages daily consumption of music and art to get through it. It not only keeps us entertained and informed on new music, but it helps support the local musicians around us.

Cynthia Munrayos
Cynthia is an incoming junior at the University of Rhode Island, and is a double major in English and Journalism. She currently is a contributing writer for the Entertainment section at URI's Good Five Cent Cigar. She has an eclectic music taste that stretches from hip-hop, R&B and soul/jazz to punk, alternative rock and even a little ambient, electronic music every now and then. Apart from school, she sings on the side and contributes her vocals to the URI-based alt rock-R&B-fusion band, Nakamarra.

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