Natalia Clavier, of Thievery Corporation, talks ‘Trans’ CD, transgender topics

Argentinian chanteuse Natalia Clavier has been enjoying a musical and personal transition and transformation.

Her latest CD, “Trans,” which includes bilingual tracks, portrays a period of deep life change, emotional and spiritual, that started about four years ago, she says.

Musically speaking, Clavier — who also is vocalist with Thievery Corporation and is in the midst of a North American tour with the group — has returned to electronica, a genre she explored on her 2008 debut CD, “Nectar.”

On “Trans,” Clavier blends electronic pop, Latin alternative, and New Age.

“This Feeling,” the CD’s first single, is a sonic cornucopia, and one of three tracks on the disc that showcase transgender themes. The other songs are “1000 Echoes” and “Sirenita.”

In a phone interview with Q Voice News, Clavier, who resides in Brooklyn, New York, talks about her transition and transformation and her ongoing healing process. During the interview, Clavier was in upstate New York filming the video for “Fenix.”

Here are some excerpts.

Her transition, transformation

“What triggered my it was my divorce,” Clavier says. “Every human being who goes through that process can talk about transition and transformation.

“The album theme is transformation and transition. I continue to shed layers. It’s the most emotional body of work for me so far.”

Accepting my voice

“One of the things was about my mission in this life,” Clavier says. “Over the year, I’ve heard about my work. In the Myspace era, I got a message from a male fan who said my music was the best cure for a hangover.

“Another message was from  a female fan who said the song ‘Arburla’ (tree in Spanish) was very healing because her son’s nickname was tree because he was very tall,” she says.

“One of the messages I got from various practitioners was the same — This is not just a pretty voice,” Clavier says. “I never thought I had a good voice. I was finally able to accept my voice. I can help people with the universal language of music and my voice as I heal myself.”

Natalia Clavier Trans

Argentinian chanteuse Natalia Clavier has been enjoying a musical and personal transition and transformation. Her latest CD, “Trans,” which includes bilingual tracks, portrays a period of deep life change, emotional and spiritual, that started about four years ago, she says. Photo: Nacional Records.

More healing

“It’s like an endless healing process, especially when you suffered from long-term physical and mental abuse, as was my case,” Clavier says. “I’m stronger and have tools, coping mechanisms to not fall into deep depression or anxiety.

Wanted to be numb

“I dealt with addiction for many years,” Clavier says. “I just wanted the numbness. I didn’t want to think or feel. I didn’t want to be present.

‘Happily sober’

“I’m happily sober right now,” Clavier says. “I’m way healthier and present. I don’t feel defeated. My pain is my strength.”

Transgender

“Transgender is linked to the teachings about the soul and music. I got a better understanding of what the soul is and how the soul doesn’t have a gender,” Clavier says. “Some cultures only consider there is one soul with multiple expressions, a dog expression, a man expression, a woman expressions, cat expression. We are all expressions of this one soul.”

‘A lifetime of torture’

“In my situation, I am really lucky that I manifested in this physical body, this expression as a woman. I fucking love being a woman,” Clavier says. “In other situations, the soul isn’t in the right way for expression. If someone is a female in a male expression. That sounds like a lifetime of torture.”

Phillip Zonkel can be reached at phillip.zonkel@qvoicenews.com or 562-294-5996.

About the author

Phillip Zonkel

Award-winning journalist Phillip Zonkel spent 17 years at Long Beach's Press-Telegram, where he was the first reporter in the paper's history to have a beat covering the city's vibrant LGBTQ. He also created and ran the popular and innovative LGBTQ news blog, Out in the 562.

He won two awards and received a nomination for his reporting on the local LGBTQ community, including a two-part investigation that exposed anti-gay bullying of local high school students and the school districts' failure to implement state mandated protections for LGBTQ students.

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