Misia Ff started her musical career by honing her skills and gaining popularity with the international trio Très.b for a few years. When the band suspended its activity, most likely permanently, she simply threw herself into her work. She collaborates with different artists and draws energy from live performances.
Misia Ff a.k.a. Misia Furtak is a singer and bassist.
Misia Ffm a.k.a. Misia Furtak, is a singer and bassist. Her fans all across Poland have come to recognize her bass guitar in the shape of a monarch butterfly. From 2005, she was a part of the band Très.b for eight years, along with guitarist Olivier Heim and percussionist Thomas Pettit. They first started playing in Denmark, then Holland, before eventually moving to Poland. They released the warmly received albums The Other Hand (2010) and 40 Winks Of Courage (2012). For Furtak, the latter was especially important, because for the first time she'd composed a few pieces herself. Previously, there were two unofficial releases: the EP Neon Chameleon and the album Scylla And Charybdis.
A few years ago, Misia uploaded her solo EP 40 Winks to the internet. These seven songs were the first taste of her abilities, created many years before and released prior to The Other Hand. The songs were recorded between 2001 and 2003 in her home under her signature name Misia is mju and home appliances partially played the role of instruments. These were meant to be rough drafts to be developed in the indefinite future. ‘Only three of these pieces are about love, which is a big accomplishment’, she said of her songs.
In the autumn of 2013, Misia Ff released her album Epka (EP). Apart from remixes of numbers she'd previously performed with her Dutch band, it featured two new singles she sung in Polish: Kartonem (With A Cardboard) and Mózg (Brain).
I really like the Polish language, I believe it’s very graceful. When I write in English, I write more in prose, in a form of historical cause-and-effect. On the other hand, when I write in Polish, I play with the language matter itself – rhymes, syllables. I also think that I have a different timbre of voice when I sing in Polish, something new is unleashed in my voice. Many people told me that I sing completely differently after hearing Mózg.
– Furtak explained in an interview with Gazeta Wyborcza.
Lust For Life (recorded in the famous Abbey Road studio in London) sounded wonderful on the album. Misia transformed David Bowie and Iggy Pop’s composition into a delicate, paradoxical ballad. Misia purred the famous phrase ‘I've a lust for life’ from the chorus, giving it new and powerful meanings. Mózg, with music written by Rykard Parasol, was a hit. Leszek Biolik, a musician from Republika, produced the music, taking Misia’s songs into the world of contemporary alternative pop.
From a sound point of view, Epka is the opposite of 40 Winks – it is entirely produced in the studio. In a sense, it is the continuation of the Misia is mju project, because it is my solo work on a computer. Therefore, one could say that Misia Ff is the intersection of mju and Très.b’s last album (…) in terms of lyrics, Epka reminds me of the Misia is mju project. These songs are about being lost, searching for something, being disappointed with others, not a love story.
– she said in the same interview.
Michalina Furtak was born on the 12th September, 1982 in Zielona Góra, although she soon moved with her parents to Grodzisk Mazowiecki and Warsaw. She spoke about her background in an interview with the portal MiastoKobiet.pl:
My whole family are Lemkos from Beskid Niski. Some of them feel that Lemkos are a Ukrainian ethnic group, therefore they feel more Ukrainian. For example, my mothers older brother. My mum on the other hand feels like a Pole with Lemko roots, yet my grandmother feels like a Lemko.
After high school she left for Denmark to attend music school, where she met the future musicians of Très.b, with whom she later moved to Holland. ‘I worked as a maid, a receptionist, as a bartender, and a cleaning lady. We always cleaned the same exhibition hall (…) I would have probably stopped making music, if it wasn’t for a certain vocalist who told me she worked very hard as a chef for many years, even after releasing her first album, she paid musicians to play with her, even though she played for free’, she told Maleman in an interview. That vocalist was her idol, the Canadian artist Feist.
Misia Ff graduated from University of Maastricht, Berklee College of Music and Collegium Civitas. She has her own radio show on the public Polish radio channel RDC (Radio dla Ciebie) entitled Pałac kultury (Palace of Culture). She received the Fryderyk Award for Best Debut Album of the year in 2011 (with Très.b) and was awarded the prestigious Paszport Polityki in 2012 in the Music category. In 2013 she was a laureate of the Grzegorz Ciechowski Art Award of the City of Toruń.
She sang with the duo HV/Noon [the song Nadważkość (Over-pertinence)], who mainly invited rappers to collaborate with them on their 2014 album HV/Noon. She has also collaborated with Envotion (the song Familiar Places,2008), Dr. No [the song Disarray, 2011; the song Jakżesz ja się uspokoję (How am I to calm down), the compilation album Wyspiański wyzwala (Wyspiański elicits)], 2008), and others.
She has performed at Open’er Festival in Gdynia, Off Festival in Katowice, Red Bull Music Academy Weekender in Warsaw (alongside Hatti Vatti, the tricity specialist in chill, toned electronic music with dub elements), and the Stage Song Review in Wrocław. She has also performed outside of Europe, in Japan.
Author: Jacek Świąder, June 2015, Translated by: Zuzanna Wiśniewska
Discography with Très.b: