RGM INTRODUCING – WE INTERVIEW LONDON ARTIST BELLE SCAR
Hiya folks thanks for joining us in the virtual RGM lounge today, grab a brew and take a seat.
What made you become a soloist?
I started playing piano at 5 and I always wrote my own things, scribbling lyrics as a teenager, I also had a few bands… It has always been a natural thing for me to be a solo artist as I have a clear vision of my music and always want to explore in-depth what I’m feeling. I can be very stubborn when It comes to my artistic direction, but I do like to collaborate with other musicians and artists when it feels right.
Introduce us to you and your musical history?
I’m a singer songwriter, composer, arranger, artistic director and I produce my own shows. I used to live in Montreal but now I live in London UK. My previous album Light bulbs were released in 2015. It had an electro-cinematic mood. I’m finalising my upcoming album with my husband who is producing and mixing the album at our studio, Plastic Sound Studios. It will be released in Fall 2022 with a concert at Sadler’s Wells to be announced shortly. It will be epic with 14 musicians and singers on stage.
What’s one question you’re sick of being asked when interviewed?
I can pretty much handle any question.
Do you sign up for any conspiracy theories?
Did you buy anything you don’t need in the pandemic?
I probably did and probably brought it to a charity shop
What useless party trick do you have?
A whoopee cushion
What was the most fun you have had on stage?
I always enjoy performing. It’s a special thing to do. But I do remember a fantastic gig in Poland. Everyone was on fire. St Pancras in London was magical, and Glastonbury was pretty cool too.
What was the worst experience on stage?
I had a few terrible gigs and it was all related to soundmen not doing their job. (But the audience was great)
Tell us something about you that you think people would be surprised about?
I play in 2 women’s football teams 4 times a week
If you had to describe your music to an alien how would you describe it?
A cinematic, moody yet uplifting soulful, raw, tribal folk-rock alternative singer songwriter.
What makes you stand out as an artist?
I don’t fit into any box. I think I’m quite an intense very emotional performer. My voice doesn’t sound like the voices in pop music today.
Right now, what’s pissing you off the most?
What’s your favourite song to play live and why?
Mementoes. I feel like I’m lost in the desert somewhere on acid. It’s very hypnotising.
I hear you have a new single, what can you tell us about it?
Yes, I do. The new single and video is for my song Kyiv in my heart. It’s a song for Peace and in support of the victims of the war in Ukraine. The song is available to purchase on Bandcamp and all the profits will go to the charity Save the Children to help the victims of the war in Ukraine.
Talk me through the thought process of the single?
Kyiv in my heart started as an idea at 3am one night a few weeks ago. After several sleepless nights of writing lyrics and working out chord progressions and melodies, I thought that it would be great to get a choir to sing so I wrote vocal arrangements for a choir. I contacted 15 singers to come and sing at our studio in North London. Kyiv in my heart is not only a song, it’s a special collaboration with 17 Ukrainian visual artists who kindly agreed to participate in this project. Most of them living around Kyiv, have continued making art and still do intensely since the war started. Their work is featured in the video as a tribute to them, their family and friends, their country and all the victims of this war. It’s emotional, strong and brave like they are. This is an important piece of work that I felt I needed to do. I took a break from recording my album to make this song and release it.
What was the recording process like?
I recorded the piano, synths, bass parts and did all the choir guide parts for the choir. Marc Olivier wrote the string arrangements as well as mixing and producing the song. We had Christophe Deschamps (Jean-Michel Jarre, Jacques Dutronc) record the drums in his studio in France. I recorded the lead vocals then we had the 15 singers who came in little groups to record the backing vocals.
Sean Magee mastered the song at Abbey Road Studios.
What was the biggest learning curve in writing the single?
It feels like you always learn things when you write a new song. It’s not something specific, each song has its story to tell and its own journey. I learn lots from the process all the time.
Would you change anything now it’s finished?
I never have regrets or want to change things once I have completed a song. I make sure I’m satisfied with it before releasing it. When something is done, I move on to the next thing.
What are your plans for the year ahead?
Finishing my album and releasing it at the end of the year. Preparing a very special album launch. I’m also starting an electronic side project and will release a first single later in the year.