An Interview With Opel Thompson

Q: For those who may be discovering Opelsings for the first time with the release of “Winter Love,” how would you describe your unique style and sound, and what do you hope new listeners will take away from this latest musical offering?

A: I would describe my sound as heavily R&B influenced with sing-a-long type melodies. I get to show my vulnerable side through storytelling which is my chosen songwriting style. I hope “Winter Love” becomes a “cuffing season” anthem for all the hopeless romantics out there who resonate with the egoless act of indulging in love, without any preconceived beliefs or assumptions of the outcome.

Q: How did the concept of “Winter Love” come about, and what inspired you to choose this as the title track for your upcoming EP?

A: The music was my inspiration, the warm feeling of the guitar made me think of wintertime and that gifted me with the melodies for the first verse. The EP is currently untitled but “Winter Love is the first offering from the 5-track project.

Q: Can you share some insights into your collaboration with Terrence “Smokey” Lavell on the production of “Winter Love”? How did the creative process unfold?

A: Growing up in my hometown of New Haven, Connecticut, I would see Terrence “Smokey” Ivory playing the drums everywhere and I always wanted to work with him. When I saw that he was producing I reached out and he sent me the track which I’m so grateful for because it really sets the tone for the project. 

Q: “Winter Love” is described as having your signature harmonies and sultry vocals. How do you believe this single reflects your artistic growth and evolution since your earlier releases?

A: I have always loved songs with a bridge, a B-section, or a vamp with an extravagant end. In my humble opinion, these are some of my favorite elements in a classic song. However, in my previous singles, I didn’t expand myself in that direction because I was trying to keep my songs under 3 minutes for radio. This time with “Winter Love” having a bridge was intentional and the backing harmonies are stacked on a climb, giving me time to display my range and emotions more than on my other singles.

Q: You’ve mentioned that your songwriting is deeply personal. Can you elaborate on the experiences that influenced the lyrics of “Winter Love” and how you navigate the vulnerability of sharing such personal stories?

A: “Winter Love” is autobiographical in the respect that I’m a single woman who enjoys being single. My space and time are sacred to me and I’ve been able to reflect on what circumstances or conditions I would share myself unapologetically. “Winter Love” is my of being able to shamelessly address it in the music, it’s my therapy.

Q: Having released several singles prior to “Winter Love,” how do you feel your music has evolved, and what elements do you think make this particular track stand out?

A: This is my first time working with Terrence so I was already excited about this collaboration and the opportunity to represent “Elm City” my hometown on a song that is an ode to the slow jams we listened to on the Quiet Storm or watched on Midnight Love growing up. The vibe of the beat pushed me to evolve and be more creative in my songwriter so that it stood out from the other music you will hear during the Xmas season. 

Q: The remix of your previous single “WYD” became a UK garage classic. Do you have any plans for remixes or alternate versions of “Winter Love” to explore different musical landscapes?

A: That’s a good question. Firstly, “WYD remix” is one of my favorites and I’ve been really blessed to meet the guys who remixed it, shout out to Krissi B and Mr. Hunts. I’ve been learning to play the bass guitar and I am planning to have a stripped-down live version of “Winter Love” so that is something I’m really looking forward to.

Q: As the first single from your upcoming EP, does “Winter Love” set the tone for the overall musical direction and themes we can expect from the entire collection?

A: The running theme that connects “Winter Love” to the upcoming EP is the different stages of love and when you are in it sometimes it’s not meant to make sense. In these stories of breaking up, feeling the pain, then being single, only to spin the block and make back up again, lol, that is the rollercoaster “Winter Love” sets the scene for.

Q: How do you see your role as an R&B artist in the UK music scene, and what impact do you hope “Winter Love” will have on your audience?

A: I can’t say I have a role yet but I’m working hard and aspire to be named amongst the greatest songwriters in music. I hope that my Blue Flames and everyone who listens to “Winter Love” add it to their slow jams playlist, share it with that special someone whom they rather spend the colder months with, and just let the guitar take them on the same trip it took me on. lol

Q: The release date for “Winter Love” is 11/11/23. Is there any significance or special meaning behind choosing this date for the launch of your new single?

A: The release date of 11/11/23 has spiritual significance because it’s Scorpio season and near the new moon so I felt it’s the perfect time to be divinely guided. It took 3 years to create this project and “Winter Love” stood out symbolising a countdown to the release of the EP.  

Q: Can you provide a glimpse into the visual and aesthetic direction of the music video for “Winter Love,” and how it complements the song’s narrative and emotions?

A: When I was creating this lyric video/visualizer my idea was to imitate the magical Northern Lights, which is one of my bucket list holidays, the blizzard symbolizes the whirlwind romance of winter love.

Q: With “Winter Love” marking the beginning of your upcoming EP, can you offer a sneak peek into what themes or musical directions we can anticipate exploring in the remaining tracks, and are there any surprises or collaborations we should be on the lookout for?

A: I just want to say thank you so much to you and the Purple Lake platform for having me this was fun. I’m extremely anxious, excited, and other emotions anticipating the birth of my first project into the world. I’m very proud to say my daughter is an amazing songwriter and will be making her debut as a writer on the EP. I’ve also collaborated with an artist who has a phenomenal voice that I’ve always wanted to collaborate with but the name is a surprise for now xx.

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