Interview by Anna Langer, photo by Mike Hatchett
Boardsports have always held a certain fascination for me. I would watch videos of surfers and snowvboarders and drool over how cool and slick they all looked. The first time I made it up a mountain, I was forced to don a pair of skis and consequently spent three days in snowy hell cursing my thighs for being too weak to snow plough. Luckily I managed to lose my group and sneak off to the hire shop to change the alien things for a snowboard, and I’ve been obsessed ever since. What I love about surfing and snowboarding is the feeling of being amongst a community of vastly different people who all have different lives and backgrounds, and yet culminate on the mountains or beaches to share the same passion. They’re both very in-the-moment activities, so it seems like for a few brief seconds you and the people around you are sharing the same thoughts and feelings. I think there’s something quite magical in that.
I’m a massively visual person; when I hear a song, I’m immediately hit with an avalanche of images and scenarios. Music videos for me are all about making those mental visuals a reality, a way for people to see the things that I see running through my head at the time of writing.
They should evoke some kind of emotion, wrap you in the world of the artist and take you deeper into the song. Pouting and lip-syncing personally leaves me feeling pretty empty – I think there’s so much more that people can do.
As a child, I trained as a classical violinist from 7 years old up until a year ago. During my time at music school/college, we were sort of forbidden from engaging in sports because any hand or finger injuries would have a disastrous effect on progress. I stuck to that rule for as long as possible, but became rebellious about 5 years ago when surfing and snowboarding became a far more exciting prospect than a practice room. I’d spend many Mondays cowering in an orchestra rehearsal with an injury after a weekend at the beach. The combination of boardsports and classical music bizarrely works quite well. The intense, thick soundscapes from orchestral works marries the beautiful soundscapes of mountains and oceans so well. I want to create music that sounds epic and emotive, so those big symphonic sounds are perfect when combined with heavy synths and dirty bass lines.
The combination of boardsports and classical music bizarrely works quite well. The intense, thick soundscapes from orchestral works marries the beautiful soundscapes of mountains and oceans so well.
I really want to see a film like The Art of Flight or Endless Summer but with female riders. I know that there are some incredible female rider films, but it would be cool to have one that is easily accessible to a wider audience without having to be centered around a daft storyline (like Chalet Girl and Blue Crush…).
“Those who believe that they are exclusively in the right are generally those who achieve something”. I love that quote and am using it as a focus point to my work at the moment.
One of the most important things I’ve had to learn over the last year is how to stick to my guns and believe in my own ideas. Art is subjective to each individual, and that’s what makes it so special, but it’s easy to get lost in other people’s opinions and ideas and start questioning what it is that you’re actually trying to do. Aldous Huxley said “Those who believe that they are exclusively in the right are generally those who achieve something”. I love that quote and am using it as a focus point to my work at the moment.
My internship at Cooler was amazing, not because I’m being interviewed right now and feel that I have to say that, but because I’ve rarely found an office of people all doing a job that they clearly love. Everyone there is positive and enthusiastic, and they get to spend their time working around an industry that they really care about. I left feeling inspired to do the same, and that’s how I came to integrate my love for snow and surf into my music. On the downside, I now feel hopelessly inadequate at surfing and snowboarding!
If I could have a wish right now it would be to have an alpine chalet/studio for me, my band and all the brilliant people I work with, overlooking a beautiful view of snowy mountains and trees. Oh and, since we’re wishing, I’d like to throw in a whiskey cabinet and new snowboards for everyone. Too much?
I’d love to go surfing with Lee Ann Curren. She seems like a really cool person and she has great style. I have a minor girl crush on her!