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Beabadoobee On Her Biggest Influences, The Iconic 90s and Growing Up

Sometimes I literally write a song that sounds exactly like a song from that era. And I’m like, I cannot use this song because it is a genuine rip-off,” expresses British Filipino-born singer-songwriter Beebadoobee whose 90s inspired music was catapulted into the spotlight when her original song ‘Coffee’ was sampled in Powfu‘s breakout hit ‘death bed (coffee for your head)’ that became a viral TikTok sensation. Named Youtube Music’s first Artist On The Rise for 2020, the 20-year-old wrote the titular track two years ago with no inclination of the impact and popularity it will conjure.

It was the first official song I ever wrote and one my purest forms of creation. It’s really overwhelming and quite scary for me because I’m not really used to this much attention,” claims the Dirty Hit (The 1975, Wolf Alice, No Rome, The Japanese House, etc)  signee in regards to her hit song.

Since then, the Hammersmith Academy graduate who got her first guitar second-hand at the age of 17 has released singles ‘Care‘, ‘Sorry‘ and ‘Worth It‘ all in line for her upcoming debut album ‘Fake It Flowers‘ to be released on October 16 and with an accompanied UK and Ireland tour in late 2021.

The freckled face composer may have spent 7 years learning the violin and covered her first Britney Spears song at age 7, but her natural affinity with music and art of the 90s and early 2000s runs deep, citing musical artists and bands such as Bats, Veruca Salt, Alanis Morissette, Pavement and Sonic Youth as some of her key influences. ‘I find that time so interesting. I feel like the music resonates to me so much. I just think it’s such an iconic era of music,’ reflects the alternative rock/indie-pop musician who grew up being exposed to such music in part of her mother and claiming her first big influences were Kimya Dawson & Elliot Smith, idolising them for their songwriting, melodies and honesty in lyric writing. Their impact in her life has been significant enough for the Iloilo City born musician to tattoo ‘XO‘ on her right arm, the title of Elliot Smith’s fourth studio album released in 1998.

I used to get loads of awards in creative writing. I used to write poems and stories while growing up. I’ve had journals throughout my whole teenage life. So there’s a really sad one, there’s one that’s really exciting that I had when I met my boyfriend and there’s this one now just about me,” recounts the ‘The Moon Song‘ songbird.

Growing up, Beabadoobee who goes by the birth name of Beatrice Laus realised her first secret talent was writing. She also developed a kooky fear of beards and was terrified of men who had them, until meeting her current boyfriend of over 5 years Soren Harison, in which the singer-songwriter discloses ‘has a stubble and I think it’s quite hot now‘. She also confirms that alternatively and in the distant future, she would like to pursue a career as an educator. ‘I’ve always wanted to be a nursery teacher when I grew up, and I did teachers assisting for like a year and I thought that was really fun, so yeah,’ expressed the pint-sized musician.

The BRITS 2020 Rising Star shortlisted artist expressed her ultimate wish to collaborate with Lush lead vocalist Miki Berenyi, whom she had the pleasure of digitally crossing paths when Miki posted about seeing the ‘Care’ singer live from a festival slot. ‘She thought I was really good. And I was like ‘Oh my god. You’re like my idol. Thanks,‘ recounts the ‘confessional bedroom pop’ singer-songwriter.

On reflecting on her life currently, Beabadoobee defines it as ‘very strange and unexpected’ period and that her immediate desire once the COVID-19 viral pandemic ends is to go away with her boyfriend to a hot country (possibly Paris) and spend a week there. In the meantime, the indie-pop songstress will continue listening to the whole of the ‘But I’m A Cheerleader’ soundtrack and her current anthem ‘Kevin is Gay‘ by American Indie Rock band Giant Drag.

It is clear that Beabadoobee’s appeal lies in her distinct musical influences that have shaped the musician into the blooming star that she is today. Her candour comes through in interviews and her effortless photogenic charm is a staple through her aesthetically pleasing Instagram profile. In the meantime, we shall spend afternoons sitting back with a cup of coffee as we listen through her entire catalogue in quiet anticipation for the release of her debut album ‘Fake It Flowers‘.

Beabadoobee’s latest music video ‘Worth It‘ premiered on Youtube on Wednesday (16 September).

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This post was last modified on May 21, 2021, 7:43 am

Ronald Goh

Music lover with a knack for words, the arts and culture.

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