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Andrea Ramolo, NUDA

Kiah Welsh

Andrea Ramolo gets up-close and personal on her new solo record, NUDA. Her lyrics, drawn from personal experience, are passionate, vulnerable, and honest. In "Edge of Love," she transcends raw emotion: "There was a time when my light was burning/ But I let it go to black/ You say it doesn't come easy/ But every pain holds a strength inside." "It was written during an exceptionally dark time where I was painfully shedding pieces of who I thought I was — as an artist, as a lover, as a woman," she explains in a press release. "I wanted the project to unabashedly expose that process; that battle with ego and identification in an attempt to just be, to reveal all my cuts and bruises in this process of becoming."

In 2003, Ramolo went through a difficult time in her life. Her mother was going though breast cancer treatment and that's when she decided to pick up the guitar. This difficult period allowed her to heal and express how she was feeling. Eventually, her country-folk tracks would end up on her debut album, Thank you for the Ride. She followed that album up in 2011 with The Shadows and the Cracks, which earned her a nomination at the Canadian Folk Music Awards. "I've definitely matured and acquired this confidence in my writing and in my voice as an artist," she says. On NUDA she also pays homage to her Italian heritage. Ramolo sings beautifully in her rendition of the ballad "Caruso" and says she wanted to remind listeners of the importance of family.

"It's about the power of love, the whole album is about the power of love, so the song captures the essence of the album, but just in another language," she says. "It's so important to revisit our roots and express ourselves in this way, as Canadians, because we all come from different places. This country was built on its immigrants, and it felt good to do something nice for my family."

Da Sola is the companion piece to Ramolo's NUDA. Da Sola (meaning by myself) contains the same songs without the full band. Produced by Faye Blais, it features Ramolo singing and playing baritone and acoustic guitar.

NUDA is set to be released Jan. 27, but you can pre-order the album here. Below, watch the video for the album's first single.

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