ALL BALL NERVE CENTER — With the NBA All-Star Weekend about to tip-off in New York City, we decided to talk to some celebrities who know both basketball and New York, to chat about what’s happening in the NBA, their advice for people visiting New York, and whatever else happens to come up in discussion.
Today we catch up with recording artist Stella. A native of the Bay Area and daughter of the legendary guitarist Carlos Santana, Stella is a singer/songwriter now based out of New York. You can keep up with her adventures on Instagram and check out her latest music on her Soundcloud.
We spoke last week during a snowy day in Manhattan…
ME: I am sorry to interrupt your snow day.
STELLA: Yeah! Really busy snow day. I went outside for a second and then I came back in. I might go back out again, and I’m gonna wear different shoes this time so I don’t fall. I didn’t fall but I was pretty close to falling, I’m not gonna lie.
ME: You grew up in California but now you live in New York City. It’s such a part of life here, but I’m guessing you didn’t get a lot of snow growing up?
STELLA: I grew up in the Bay Area and no, no snow then. Snow is kind of novel now. It’s still kind of exciting, like, “Look, it’s snow!” I still like it. I feel like I like seasons more. We don’t really get seasons out there. We get rain and sun and that’s pretty much it.
ME: I watched your latest video, and really enjoyed it. And I caught the Streetcar Named Desire reference.
STELLA: Yeah (laughs), some people are noticing it and some people are not noticing it, and it makes me realize I’m older. That video we just did and I’m working on another one for another song that I have out right now, that we’re gonna shoot here in New York.
ME: So the All-Star Game is coming up here in New York City. What would you tell people not to miss when they come to New York?
STELLA: I like museums. This may also make me seem old (laughs). I can’t be in them for too long, but there’s just so much cool art, and the museums and the galleries that are in Chelsea and stuff like that. I love art and seeing people create, and it’s just a great place to explore all different kinds. So I would say that, because you can pick and choose what your style is. There’s so many options, and the Brooklyn Museum is really cool, too. I’m an artist so I love the arts stuff. Also, the top of the Empire State Building is fun, if you don’t mind freezing for a little bit. It’s pretty cool at night, especially. It’s open until 1:30 A.M.
ME: Growing up in the Bay Area were you a fan of the Warriors?
STELLA: Yeah, Warriors for sure. We have the Raiders and the Niners, and the Bay is very separated over the two teams. Or the Giants and the A’s. But everyone kind of comes together over the Warriors. Which I really like, because I feel like we’re from the same place so we should support everyone. So yeah, I’m a big Warriors fan.
ME: You must have grown up during the Run TMC era, when they had Tim Hardaway, Chris Mullin and Mitch Richmond?
STELLA: Yes, I remember my brother had all the little figurines.
ME: The Starting Lineup figures? That’s great. So now that you’re an East Coaster, do you still pull for the Warriors? Or did you transfer your allegiance to the Knicks or Nets?
STELLA: No, no, no, no. I’m definitely still a Warriors fan. I don’t have League Pass, so that’s my excuse to go out to a bar and watch the games. I’ve always loved watching basketball. I remember growing up and my dad would always watch sports on mute, and then would be practicing guitar while watching the games. I remember laying in front of the TV listening to him play. So I’ve always loved, loved, loved watching basketball.
ME: Is your Dad a Warriors fan?
STELLA: Yeah, he’s definitely a Warriors fan. He was also a Bulls fan, because, like, Jordan and stuff, but he’s definitely a Warriors fan. I think he’s played the National Anthem a couple of times. He goes to the games sometimes.
ME: Do you think Klay Thompson should start alongside Steph Curry in the All-Star Game?
STELLA: Yeah, he had that amazing third quarter when he scored all those points.
ME: Right, he scored 37.
STELLA: Yeah, 37! That’s my number!
ME: Wait, is that really your number? That seems like a non-traditional favorite number.
STELLA: I mean, I just see it a lot in places. It just always shows up.
ME: It just seems like a very random number. No offense.
STELLA: It is a random number. That’s why it’s so weird.
ME: So the Warriors are basically destroying the rest of the NBA this season. You think they can win a title this season?
STELLA: Yeah, they’re killing it. I definitely think they can win a title. They’re doing so great, they’ve only lost two home games and have been amazing against the East Coast teams. I mean, come on. I have a lot of faith. I just feel like the Bay Area, when we have our teams that are doing well, there’s just a good spirit there. We’re scrappy and kind of hippie and peace-and-lovey, but we’ll come together and I feel that way about the Dubs.
ME: Maybe you were having a premonition with the number 37, and you were seeing it everywhere because you were foreshadowing Klay’s big quarter. And now maybe you’ll start seeing the number 1 all the time now for the Warriors winning a title.
STELLA: (laughing) Yes! Yes!