A more in-depth insight into the process and inspiration behind each song xx
LockItDown: The title track encompasses my feeling about being in lock down and trying to maintain a positive attitude, despite the craziness of what the whole world is going through in 2020. At the beginning of lock down, I knew that I wanted to create some sort of memento of this time so, what better way to do that than to create some music/art! This was the 3rd track that Academic and I co-wrote for the EP and I feel like we finally found a style where we can shine as co-writers. I said to him that I wanted to make an old school HipHop tune with horns on it and then he came to me with 3 demo options. As soon as I heard this one, I knew it was the one! From there, I wrote the rap, melody and vocal hooks you can hear in the BVs. When we work together we generally work that way, me on lyrics and melody and he on harmony and production but of course we both have an input on what the other is doing too! Academic found that amazing sax sample and chopped it up and I had 2 absolute legends come and do the backing vocals: Joy and Monday, who really just lifted the track to where it needed to be! (They are both incredible singers and I hope to feature more in future work). It's the first track I've released that has me rapping throughout which feels like a milestone for me because it's something I've done by myself for a while but I was hesitant to put myself out there as a 'rapper'. It's a funny thing being a white woman and feeling like you will get the piss taken out of you, but at the end of the day I love doing it so much that I thought, screw it, this is me! Cuffing Season: This track just makes me feel all fuzzy and warm. I really embraced my softer side on this track and it's inspired by memories of hooking up with people just for the colder months of the year (knowing full well that it wouldn't last!). This was actually the last track written for the EP, again with Academic. He came to me with some demos and I chose this one, he added the nice little detail of the clock ticking, and I got a friend to add some guitar. I felt something was missing though and couldn't replicate what I could here in my head through an instrument, so I ended up recording the vocal hooks (boodidididi). I'm actually starting to make this my thing because I did that in LockItDown also! I mean who doesn't love a bit of boodidi? Run 4 U: I wrote this track and at first had produced it completely on my own. But because I'm very much still a novice at production, I got another producer involved, IAMSUUBI, who got the track up to scratch. He also gave the track a more Trap kinda edge to it which contrasts nicely I think with the personal message of the lyric. The song is inspired by being a mum and the challenge of balancing motherhood with trying to build a new career for myself. It's a lot of late nights, writing, studying, creating content, trying to get back in shape (for dance videos!) and of course it can be super draining. But when I look into the eyes of my kids, I'm reminded of why I'm pushing so hard to make this work. Whatever happens, whether I can make a living off being an artist or whether I'm just working in the music industry in whatever field, it's all worth it, this is my plan A,B and C, one way or another I have to make it work. 8 Billion faces: This track is definitely an experimental track. It's the first song I wrote that was for the EP and I wrote it in the first couple of days of the pandemic arriving in England for real! So it's probably no surprise to hear that it is in fact about the pandemic (hehe). I mean, what a bizarre thing to be living through, although I gotta be honest, I actually dig wearing a mask (I know, I'm a freak), I just feel like I'm in a Mad Max movie and my imagination gets me feeling like I'm on a set or on another planet. I'm always questioning and wondering why this is happening and how we got to this point. It really made me feel that at the end of the day we can have as many technological gadgets that we want and think that we are so advanced but if mother nature wants to take us out, then she'll do it no worries mate! I mean, it's just bonkers really, you just have to do your best to enjoy the little things that can bring you joy. Again I produced this track but then I palmed it off to Academic to bring it up to scratch production wise! Do You (OohLaLa): This is a sexy love tune with the first nudge towards my cultural heritage, the pre-chorus being in French. It's the 2nd song that Academic and I wrote for the EP and the brief that I gave him was to write something that you would want to hear on the Fifty Shades of Grey soundtrack! I got my friend Federico Mao to play some beautiful classical guitar on it which I think makes this tune, along with the vocal samples and strings that Academic chopped up. My beautiful friend Joy also contributed BVs in the bridge. The whole feeling of the song is really about being head over heels for someone but not really knowing if they are feeling the same way and perhaps being too scared to find out. Rollercoaster: The last track on the EP is in fact the first song Academic and I co-wrote together for this project. Even just over the 6-7 months we worked on this EP together, meeting 3 times a week, I feel like we've already evolved! It's funny to look back on songs that you wrote months before and see where you've grown to and then project where you will go on from there. It's a bit of an experimental tune as well, I wanted to write about social media feeling like you are in a sort of fairground that you hop on and off of, but you're never really sure if you're actually having fun. Academic found all these cool samples, like the coins and the merry go round and even just the chords he came up with really add to the dream-like quality of the track. It's also a bit of a tribute to my cabaret roots, for years I worked the cabaret circuit in my home town Melbourne (Australia), singing and dancing, creating artistic and often kooky live shows.