Photo courtesy of the artist

Simona: A Mountain Girl Finds Her Tribe By the Sea

Singer-songwriter Simona is a trained dancer from Mendoza, in the Argentinean Andes. But since arriving in Barcelona three years ago, it is here in the Mediterranean that she first immersed herself in music-making. “I feel we’re in a queer moment in history; genres and labels only strip us of our freedom, so I would rather not define myself but rather go with the flow,” she says.

In her El Born neighborhood (or as she likes to say, ‘El West Born”), Simona (born Simona Sibilla) has found a crew of young creative conspirators, many of them also hailing from her hometown. Together, they collaborate on visuals, wardrobe, and beat-making as evidenced in her inspired music videos. 

As a mountain girl, Simona admits she still finds it surreal to live so close to the beach (“I couldn’t believe it at first”.) She combines pop sensibility and chameleonic curiosity with grace and cites her grandmother Montserrat, a poet, as an inspiration.

Her trippy, slightly melancholic lyrics are as lucid as they are nuanced. In the song “Perreo y lloro”, she shakes off heaviness and invites us to let it go too; to allow ourselves to shed tears–of joy, or sadness, or both–whilst perreando on the dance floor (or in the bedroom).  In “Bali”, she softly tells it like it is over club vibes: “I think virtual reality is killing us, that’s why I stay home scrolling.” 

But trust, this is feel-good music. Because it feels of this moment, alive and crystal-clear. Just like every time Simona dips her feet in the sea in her newly adopted home. 

Listen to Simona in her own words in my interview with her as part of my program LATINXTRANSFER on Radio Primavera Sound. Also in this episode, a chat with Colombia’s Afro Fresh, and the latest from Debi Nova, Vanessa Zamora and more.