EXCLUSIVE: Claire London Talks About Being Fiona Apple’s Love Child, Her Love of Black, and Crying to Adele
MOVE OVER Fiona Apple, there is a new heartbreak queen in town – and she goes by the name Claire London! Dark, twisted and reeling over heartbreak, her song “Color me” is the perfect mate for late-night-journal-writing-cry-fests. I am in love with her breathy voice and goosebump-giving lyrics. My favorite line of the song is “a cut so deep and it’s not healing.” I wanted to chat with Claire and find out where we can hear more music, because I know that it is just a matter of time before the rest of the world finds out about the music gem and she becomes way too cool to talk to me!
For a limited time, Buzznet readers can get ‘Color Me’ for FREE!
KC: Since you are a new artist, can you tell everyone on Buzznet a little about you?
CL: I’m a New York City girl with a love of top hats, red lipstick, and blues-y rock ‘n roll. I grew up in Richmond, VA with two English parents, so I’m definitely a mix of a lot of musical influences. I began singing and performing at 5 years old and basically never stopped. When I first moved to New York, I was your typical struggling artist/college student/waitress. I went around auditioning and meeting different producers, recording in basements and closets, singing in cover bands, and trying to find my niche. It was never easy and there were a lot of ups and downs along the way, but even through the toughest of times, I always believed in what I had to offer. I’m super lucky to work with a fabulous team of producers at The Cutting Room Studios and am releasing my debut album, Like a Machine, at the end of this summer. I am also developing a very special organization called Project Armor that is near and dear to my heart.
KC: I would describe your music as the perfect break-up album. Girl, you sing some sad songs! What was the inspiration for the record?
CL: Yes, it’s definitely break-up worthy, but this album represents a lot of different emotions for me. I was so inspired to write about some of the real internal struggles I’ve had, and I wanted to do it in a way that was both honest and edgy, provocative and genuine. Things like depression, hope, rebellion, empowerment, apathy, courage, a little madness, and of course, heartbreak. It’s all in there and it’s all written from the heart.
KC: How would you describe your music?
CL: It’s on the blues-y side of rock and pop, with an industrial edge. It’s dark, moody, rebellious, soulful, and introspective. If The Black Keys, Portishead, Fiona Apple, Citizen Cope, Radiohead, and NIN had a love child, it’d be me!
KC: You live in NYC right? What is the best thing about NYC?
CL: One of the best things about NYC is the endless amount of inspiration and possibility around every corner. Fashion, music, art, ambition, energy – it’s all right here. No one can ever look or feel or be out of place in New York, and there’s always something new to discover. It has its harsh moments and can definitely beat you down sometimes, so it’s important to get away and recharge, but something magical always happens to pull you back in, and suddenly you’re on a rooftop in Brooklyn overlooking the skyline with a crazy group of artist friends, and you are completely in love again.
KC: What I love most about the video is that you are very honest and real, there is no airbrush/perfect girl thing going on. Was that the intention?
CL: Absolutely. I felt like it would take away from the whole point of the song if I were all glammed up and airbrushed. I wanted it to be real and honest. I think that makes it more relatable.
KC: You have this crazy goth/punk/vintage style with a focus on BLACK. How would you describe your style and where do you shop?
CL: Someone asked me this the other day and I said my style was Victorian rocker military grunge chic. I dont know if that makes sense to anyone but me but I do love me some fashion 😉 And yes, the color black. One of my favorite things to do is mix masculine style pieces with feminine ones. I often look online to see the latest designer collections for inspiration and then go out and get something that has a similar vibe but is of course WAY less expensive. For example, I got that black military jacket you see in the music video from Trash and Vaudeville in the East Village for 60 bucks, (one of my fave stores) and my Mom made that long black skirt for about 15 bucks. H&M is a good standard, and I love sifting through places like Buffalo Exchange and quirky East Village boutiques for vintage or unique jackets and shirts. It’s really amazing how much money you can save if you have a clear sense of your own style.
KC: There are a million young singers out in the world that are dreaming of one day making a record and a music video. What would be your advice to anyone following their dreams?
CL: I almost feel like telling someone to “Never Give Up” is cliche, but it really is true. I’ve had more than a few moments where I felt hopeless and wanted to give up, and it’s STILL a difficult road, but if you really believe in what you do, and I mean really believe in it, from your gut, you can make it happen. It’s so important to have a clear vision of who you are as an artist and stay true to that vision always. Believe in it, love it, and never let it go.
KC: Your cover of Adele’s “Someone Like You” is one of the best on YouTube. What do you love about that song?
CL: Thank you! I just love her. I’m always drawn to a set of soulful pipes and straight from the heart lyrics, and Adele’s the real deal. She’s such a genuine talent and it’s so refreshing to see that amidst some of the auto-tuned pop stars out there right now. That song struck a chord with me and had me in tears when I first heard it. Talk about a heartbreak song!
KC: What is next for you?
CL: Gearing up for some upcoming live shows in New York and LA, and releasing the full album! (see my website for dates – www.clairelondon.com) Lots of other fun stuff in the works too, so stay tuned!
KC: How on earth did you make that newspaper wall for the video?
CL: I loved that wall!! But I can’t take credit for the actual labor part of it. My hardworking art director spent 8 hours putting all that newspaper up before I even got there. The worst part of the day was having to tear it all down at the end of the shoot.
KC: What artists are you listening to right now?
CL: A little bit of everything. Lately I’ve been listening to Lykke Li, Bright Eyes, Adele, The xx, Bill Withers, The Black Keys, old school Outkast, and Miike Snow. I’m super random.
As always you can stalk me here