A selection of articles from all our issues - go to 'The Magazine' to read them all, including exclusive interviews from Aston Barrett Jr., Niko Moon, Serena Ryder, Canaan Smith and many more...
This article is kindly sponsored by Scarlet River Management
Hi Charlotte! Thanks so much for doing this interview with us! You’ve recently released the EP Coffee and Conversations; is this a collection of songs you’ve written over some time or was it a case of having the idea for the EP then creating the music?
They were written over a period of time. A couple of them were intended to be on the first EP; I know I had intentions for 'Remedy' to be on the first one but I wasn’t sure, same with 'Early Light'. The others came over time; I decided I wanted to release another record and thought why not have these songs that make a lot of sense to be together - and that’s how they ended up on the EP.
In 'Remedy' you ask ‘Are we meant to be each other’s remedy?’ – whilst it is so important to be strong within ourselves, we often find ourselves relying on the strength of those around us, whether it’s friends, partners or family. How important do you think it is to have these people who can heal you and make you feel better when you need it, and was there a particular person or event that you are discussing in this song?
Yes; certainly. I do think it’s important to have a support system. I think that’s the case for whoever you are - you could be the most successful and happiest person on the planet but you’re still going to need people; that’s a very human need and desire. The actual event that inspired this song was that one of my best friends in the whole world, who is actually a muse for a lot of the songs I’ve written, welcomed someone back into her life. Whilst I was friends with this person, I didn’t think it was a good idea because it seems like they can only exist when they’re both miserable. That was the idea behind it, I just remember being so angry with her that she was letting this person swan back in. I remember thinking ‘How would I write this song, what would my perspective be?’ That’s why it’s a little bit punchy and bitter at the beginning where it’s like ‘Are you doing ok? You left me a long time ago; how about we catch up’. So that was what caused me to write this song.
'On The Loose' is a feel good anthem! It tells the story of someone who has been on the end of some harsh criticisms from an ex, but instead of taking this negatively has decided to run with the names and turn it into more of a joke – as an artist, how important do you think it is to harness this ability to not take things too seriously and turn other people’s negativity into something positive?
I think it’s essential. It would be an absolute lie to say that things don’t affect you, and that’s totally okay, they’re allowed to affect you. Sometimes though you have to have a thick skin and brush it off. Especially as an artist; unfortunately no matter what you do, you could be the most talented artist in the world, someone isn’t going to like it. That’s just the way it is unfortunately, but you’ve just got to go ‘You know what, it’s not for them and that’s fine’ and let it wash over you and be okay - but that doesn’t mean that it’s an easy thing to do!
What was the inspiration behind this particular song?
I remember driving down the road and I saw an ambulance and all that came into my head was ‘Blue lights chasing me all over town’. That sort of sat with me for a few days and I kept thinking ‘I kind of like that!’ The idea I then had was that it would be funny to write the song about a woman who has just had enough! She isn’t going to tell you how heartbroken she is, she’s just thinking that it is time for her to get her revenge! I just thought that kind of feel would be quite funny, and it is a made up story by the way, before anyone thinks I’m being chased by the police!
'Praying for Rain' takes a different approach in that using the pathetic fallacy of the rain underlines the heartbreak of someone leaving, but also the need to release those emotions. In a world where there can be a lot of pressure to bottle things up and move on, how important do you think it is that we allow ourselves time to handle what we are going through?
I think it’s something that, whether you like it or not, we all have to learn to do. The idea for 'Praying for Rain' is saying the things that you’re too afraid to say, and not worrying about potentially regretting anything. I believe that the words that will hurt you more than words that you use to hurt someone, are the words that you don’t say because you’re scared of what might happen. You just need to say what you’re feeling and get it off your chest, but I think that’s a learning curve. When we have arguments in relationships we too often look back and think ‘I should’ve said this’; there’s no point, just get it off your chest! The reality is that if you’re going to say something that puts them completely off of you, then you weren’t right for each other in the first place!
'Early Light' again brings in that natural imagery of the weather, with the sunrise used both in the story of the song but also to represent the optimism and excitement of new romance – was this something that you planned to include in your songs or did the imagery come naturally to you?
I love metaphors and imagery! I’m such a literature nerd so stuff like that is definitely my cup of tea! For those particularly attentive listeners, they will have noticed that in the first EP the fourth song is called 'Passenger Side' and says, ‘I’ve seen the sunrise from talking all night’. 'Early Light' is actually the same story but just a little bit later on! It comes from the same inspiration, that experience of being in a relationship where you’re treated really well, which is always really nice! The relationship is healthier and everything feels so much brighter! I deliberately structured the EP with putting a more melancholic song then a really positive song to lift people up; I did that in the first EP too and I think that’s fun for people when they’re listening!
If you had to name one song from the EP that means the most to you, which would it be and why?
Probably 'Early Light'; it’s one of those songs that comes from a personal experience. I love singing that song and I loved creating that song; I loved sitting in the studio and coming up with all the fun bits that were going into it. I just love that it feels like it should be in a cheesy rom-com! That’s the dream!
Current climate permitting – what are your plans for the rest of 2021?
It’s looking more and more likely that the world is going to open up, and hopefully it won’t be locked down again! If that is the case and I can go out and perform then that is the main goal. I want to go out and sing, go out and meet people and thank the people who have supported me face to face! I want to create more content and keep amping it up, because although I’ve had a great response there’s only so much I can do during the lockdown. You do need to tour ideally, and meet more artists and travel. Most of the people who are supporting me have never even seen me live or met me in person, so it would be really cool for me to see them, and hopefully that’s the case!
Finally, one thing we ask all of our interviewees is to name their top three songs that relate to mental health. What would be your top three?
My Girl - Temptations
Stars - Grace Potter
The Archer - Taylor Swift
Buy print editions of Mindful Melody Issue 11 below!