Ahead of the release of her new single, we caught up with one of our all-time favourite artists, Ariana and the Rose! Here, she lets us in on what she's been up to in recent years, plans for the future and more!
We last spoke to you in 2014! Can you tell us about what you've been up to in the past five years and how you've changed and evolved as an artist?
Oh my god, five years feels like a lifetime ago! Well I’ve had about four different hairstyles since then! Which sounds sort of silly but I think has marked different parts of my life in their own way. I’ve lived in London, moved back to Brooklyn, put out a whole bunch of music and gotten to tour a lot. I’m about to put out a new EP and visuals, so it feels like the beginning of a new chapter, which is very exciting. I’ve definitely changed a lot of the past five years and I’m feeling really good about where I’m at right now.
What have been some of the biggest challenges being a part of the music industry?
I think keeping an even-keeled emotional balance is the hardest part for me. The ups and downs feel really extreme, it’s an industry where it can feel like a lot is out of your control, so finding a way to stay balanced no matter how great something is going or how bad it feels has been a skill I’ve had to work really hard on. Some days I’m better at it than others but overall I let as much roll of my shoulders as I can.
Where are you now drawing your inspirations and influence from when it comes to creating music?
I’ve gone back to the drawing board with some influences recently, to artists that I have loved from when I was in high school or uni. Imogen Heap has always been one of my favourites. The song always comes first with her and then she uses technology to create something that is futuristic and timeless all at once. I’m always drawing inspiration from the city that I’m in the most at the time, which right now is New York. The energy and style of the city has definitely seeped into the stuff I’ve been writing, I feel like the lyrics on the music I’m about to put out has more of a New York attitude that some of my previous stuff.
If you could work with anybody moving forward, who would you choose and why?
I’d love to work with Mark Ronson. His music and production are so on the pulse of what is at the centre of music at the time he’s making something. He’s a reinvention artist, constantly growing and changing along with the artists he collaborates with. Working with him is definitely on my bucket list.
What would you say have been some of your favourite moments of your career to-date?
I started throwing immersive music parties in Brooklyn about a year ago, called Light + Space. The events combine performance art, a concert and a galactic rave. It’s been amazing getting to see a room filled with people being completely swept away by the environment and the music. The first show we ever did was definitely one of my favourite moments in my career. I walked onto a platform in the centre of the room surrounded by all these people and I could just feel the energy, I felt so calm and like I was in the exact place I was meant to be in at that moment.
The studio is a mysterious place for those of us who aren't a part of the music world; can you tell us a little bit about a typical day in the studio and what happens?
Every day in the studio is different. Some days I sit down at the piano with something I’ve been working on and play it for a producer, other days we start from scratch and there’s three of us writing in a room. I love doing co-writes. I write alone at home a lot and I get a bit in my head about the song, I’m pretty chatty, so when I’m with other people it’s a much more fun process for me. Writing a song always feels like going to the gym to me, it can be tough to push through sometimes, but you always feel amazing when you’ve finished and come out the other side.
Do you have any advice for up-and-coming artists just starting out in this world?
I feel like I’m still an up and coming artist starting out in the world! The biggest game-changer for me was finding a team that really believes in me and my music. For the first time, I feel like every single person I work with is invested in my project and my art and will give me their honest opinions, which is so important. Make music you love, create a vision you can get behind and then find people who love your music and get behind you as well.
What should we expect from you in 2019?
I’m putting out a lot of music and touring, which is so exciting. I haven’t put an EP out in a couple years, so getting to share this music and then take it on the road is going to be so much fun. It’s shaping up to be a very exciting year.
Ariana and the Rose drops her new single You Were Never My Boyfriend on April 3, 2019.