Independent Artist of the Week: Gian Santoro

June 8th 2023


  • Gian Santoro :: interview with Lill Scott

Content warning: this interview audio contains a suicide reference. If this brings anything to the surface for you, there are resources listed below.

Gian Santoro’s Reflections On The Waters pulls back the curtains in their soulful recount of navigating queer identity, intergenerational trauma, and grief. Draped in soothing lofi percussion and introspective lyricism, their album Reflections On The Waters is testament to their artistic triumph. 

Gian Santoto is a 21 year old hip-hop artist from South West Sydney, who tells a hauntingly beautiful tale of triumph amongst tragedy, finding a collective love through community and a passion for art. 

After speaking with Lill Scott on Monday Up For It, it’s clear that authentic, soulful expression is a key ingredient in their music. This authenticity effortlessly translates within the record, featuring voicemails, snippets of conversations, garage doors opening – all in the mix. 

“I want people to understand just how much soul I put into the music.”

Influenced by the slow, soulful loops coming out of the underground New York scene of the mid 2010s, the muted lofi backdrop makes a cosy, comforting canvas for Gian’s emotive storytelling. Entirely produced by Aotearoa/New Zealand producer Kowhai, the instrumentals maintain minimalist percussion, soulful and jazzy sample loops, which positions Gian’s lyricism at the forefront. 

Their introspection and vulnerability underscores their latest record, and is at the core of their artistic expression. 

This is how I wanted to reach people in life.”

Gian’s music is like a fingerprint; each track of Reflections On The Waters is a candid, unique, and striking retelling of their exploration of identity, culture, and emotion. 

Listen to the full interview with Lill Scott up top, or stream their latest track ‘Soprano Konfessional’ below. You can see Gian Santoro perform at Raptown Fest: Charity Edition at 107 Redfern Street June 24, and stream their upcoming EP ‘LOV37ANE’ on June 9.

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