AHEAD of the release of her sophomore album…
Sad Girl Music; I have been speaking with Charlee Remitz about her single, My Worst, and whether there is a personal story behind it. She talks about her musical inspiration and which artists are important to her; whether we can see her perform soon – she reveals the three albums that mean the most to her.
Remitz discusses whether she has grown since her debut album and how important Los Angeles is as a base and foundation; how she unwinds away from music; which rising artists we need to get behind – she ends the interview with a great song selection.
Hi, Charlee. How are you? How has your week been?
I’m a mixed bag of opposites. My week was good. I dragged my mixed bag of opposites to London to promote my album and ate a lot of croissants.
For those new to your music; can you introduce yourself, please?
I’m Charlee Remitz, the happiest sad girl. I write music for happy-sad people. For those who revel in their emotions - for those who recognized how important it is to welcome sadness and happiness as though they are equals.
My Worst is out. How did the song come together? What is the story behind it?
It came together fast. That’s one thing that can be said about anger: it clears the mind. You do, feel and see nothing but crimson. I was angry. I’d fallen for a boy who was confused and all jumbled in his mind. I want to say he learned. He grew. But, when we dated, he was just as confused.
Youth is a plague. You must heal from it.
The track is from your upcoming album, Sad Girl Music. Are there particular themes you address on the record?
Sadness, of course...
I think sadness is a misunderstood emotion. Its tint we associate with drowning - which isn’t so far off. You CAN drown in it. But, as with most things, drowning is a choice. I fell out of love with a boy this summer and I drowned for a time. But, then, rather bizarrely, I remembered I can swim. And it wasn’t this pivotal, coming-to-Jesus moment: it was almost casual. I just moved. My arms, my legs and then I was swimming. I can’t say when, but there was a moment I realized sadness is fundamental to happiness and that invisible catalyst defines me now. I opened my eyes while I was underwater. And I guess I want everyone to do that. It’s a world undiscovered. You learn things about yourself that you can’t know above the surface.
Sadness is a massive uncovering of the soul. That is what leads to the ultimate happiness - knowing exactly who you are.
How do you think your new album differs from your debut? Have you grown in confidence?
Growth and confidence are a great example of symbiosis. They’re co-dependents. I think we all start off holding onto our skin like it’s gonna pool up around our feet if we let it go. Like, nakedness is so bad. That’s where the growth comes in. You can physically expand in all directions, but you’ll never cease fearing how you’ll be received if you let go. If you walk on stage wearing nothing at all you have to open.
When you grow into yourself, when you take it all off and try it back on again; when you uncover who that person is you wear yourself better. I firmly believe that.
Being based out of Los Angeles; how important is the city and people regards your creativity?
Not very. I have a sort of whimsical admiration for little towns in rainy, wet places. Foggy windows; orange streetlights; perfectly mundane neighbourhoods. I think I daydream about suburbia. Suburbia isn’t in L.A.’s vernacular. Thus, my creativity is a result of a lifestyle I romanticize for its simplicity, its small happinesses (sic).
How did music come into your life? Which artists inspired you growing up?
I don’t really know a good way to answer this question. It was just an occurrence. I don’t remember it being this ‘Big Bang’; suddenly my universe was a universe populated by music. It just happened and eventually it was the most important happenstance of my life. I always followed Taylor Swift. I associate her with Gold. She is that pretty bracelet you admire because it seems to have a sparkle you can’t taint. And that is Taylor Swift. You can’t taint her sparkle.
What do you hope to achieve by the end of 2018?
Inner-peace. I’d like to dress up for myself. I’d like to sing and write solely because I love it; not because I’m trying to prove something. I’d like to lose all the guilt. I’d like to eat without paying so much mind to my figure. I’d like to be free within my own.
Have you got a favourite memory from your time in music so far – the one that sticks in the mind?
I really loved writing about my love story this past year. Even its combustive end.
Which three albums mean the most to you would you say (and why)?
Torches by Foster the People
This album was a coming of age for me, which is funny because their sophomore L.P. was called Coming of Age. It was a massive coming of age. I was golfing the tournament circuit in Montana; it was smoky from the forest fires and my mother and I were healing from the heartbreak of my father leaving. It was a sunshiny broken time. The feeling of it is easy to recall. It feels hopeful. Most heartbreaks are hard to fathom in the moment, but their motives become clear when you’re effectively on the outside.
Details by Frou Frou
With this album playing, it was the first time I pictured myself not just performing on stage, but I pictured my grand entry; I heard the screams. Triumphant every time, of course.
Continuum by John Mayer
The entire universe lives within this album. It is the only thing that understands everything and nothing.
If you could support any musician alive today, and choose your own rider, what would that entail?
I’d love to open for Justin Bieber because I’d love to see Justin Bieber do what I know he’s capable of doing. He has all the abilities in the world to create a massive Pop L.P. - and I think he will. I’d love to be there for his ‘Tiger Woods moment’.
Might we see some tour dates coming up? Where might we be able to catch you play?
I’m playing in New York, October 20th and Los Angeles for my album release show, November 13th.
What advice would you give to new artists coming through?
Don’t forget to love it.
IN THIS PHOTO: Sara Phillips/PHOTO CREDIT: @streetwisela
Do you get much time to chill away from music? How do you unwind?
I’m terrible at relaxing. My mind is too temperamental. Distraction is key. So, you’re basically asking me how I trick myself into unwinding -I do it with a good book or Grey’s Anatomy.
Finally, and for being a good sport; you can choose a song and I’ll play it here (not any of your music - I will do that).
Here’s to You by Sara Phillips
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