London based avant-pop artist FEMME (Laura Bettinson’s new project), encompasses music, art, fashion and film, as well as taking inspiration from sixties girl groups. She’s recently teamed up with adidas NEO for her sun-kissed, unreleased track ‘Daydreamer’ (free download).
So…there was no better time to talk to charming FEMME (Laura).
Hi Laura , can you tell us how the idea for FEMME came about, and can you give us some names of people/fashion/music/films you are taking inspiration from.
FEMME is an outlet for the music I make as a solo artist. I’ve always made my own music and I started writing songs around 16. I love collaborating with other music makers but it’s also important for me to have something that is solely my own responsibility over which I have complete creative control. So far I’ve made the whole lot, music, photos and videos from one room in my house.
I’m excited to get it out there! The people I take inspiration from are anyone that is offering up something different. Taking an influence, twisting it and pushing it to a different place. Issey Miyake, Hussein Chalayan, Gareth Pugh, Erwin Wurm, Tim Walker, Bert Stern, Man Ray, Cindy Sherman- all people I find very inspiring. Now that your fellow Ultraista band mates ( Nigel Godrich, Joey Waronker ) are concentrating on the Atoms For Peace tour, and you are focusing on your solo career, how do you find it? More challenging?
Easier in many ways as it’s only one person to organise, one person to make the decisions and one person making the music. But of course it will be more challenging to get word out there as I am the least known member of that band – however I find that quite exciting. I think I’ve got lots to look forward to.
Can you tell us a bit about ‘Daydreamer’ and the collaboration with adidas NEO? Do you think is giving you the right platform for your project/music?
It’s been a successful campaign so far and I’ve been very pleased with how the music has been received by their fans. It’s provided me with a global platform to launch my music from which I would never had had without their help and support. Thumbs up from me. Do you have any interesting story on the making of the video for ‘Daydreamer’?
The Daydreamer video is a mashup of all the footage from the Adidas NEO lookbook. The song was written specifically for them and their online lookbook campaign so it made sense to make a little bootleg video using their footage. I’ve got the first original FEMME video coming out soon… it’s very different to the Daydreamer one…stay tuned.
How important was for you to graduate at Goldsmiths (legendary launch pad for Blur, Katy B and James Blake)? What was the dream you had at the time?
Not really. I didn’t even really know what Goldsmiths was before applying and I was just looking for universities in the UK which had popular music courses. I visited a few different academies and art schools but Goldsmiths felt like home. It wasn’t intimidating, I felt very comfortable there and met some amazing, inspiring people while studying. Many of whom I still make music with. Stella McCartney is a big fan of yours , how did you feel about her choosing your music as soundtrack for her 2012 catwalk collections?
It felt good! I like what she is about and love her design so for her to pick my music for her SS12 campaign was a treat but for her to then choose another one of my songs for the AW12 too was quite incredible. I’m very appreciative of her support.
Can you tell us something about your forthcoming collaboration with hotly-tipped new act Enjoyed ?
We’ve written a disco track together- Dreamboat Lover (Humour Me). I’m not sure how we came up with the disco element, it just funked it’s way over there. It kind of wrote itself this tune. We’ve played the track out a few times live and it always gives people hot feet.
Do you have any other exciting projects in the pipeline for this year or next?
I’m concentrating on FEMME for the time being. I’ve got a single due out in May and then we’ll be booking in some more shows and planning some more releases. I’m heading back over to the US with Ultraísta in May to support Flying Lotus in New York and play a show in LA. It’s going to be a fun summer.
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