Singer-songwriter Gretchin lives strictly in black and white, fully committing to her minimalist aesthetic. Her moody electro-pop melodies are reminiscent of 1980's groups such as The Smiths, and her delicate unique voice is "Kate Bush-esque." The emotional quality of Gretichin's songwriting is complimented by her vocal ability in her single titled The Thread. The song chronicles losing one's self in relationships and throughout the trials of life. Gretchin sings "like a fish out of water, I find it hard to breathe.......I've done it again, I've lost myself walking on the tightrope of life, I'm hanging by a thin thread."
Gretchin's lyrical ability is raw, emotional, and poetic as she captivates the listener and beckons them into her world. I spoke to the London based singer-songwriter about being a woman in the music industry, her writing process, and style.
Are you originally from London?
Yes, I’m from East London. I grew up here.
How did growing up in London affect your songwriting and style?
London is definitely a very exciting place for a musician to grow up. There are so many people playing so many different styles of music, which I think is why my music has so many sounds to it. It’s ‘electronic pop’ but there are influences from soul, r&b and everything else I listened to growing up. There was always a gig to go to and a new band to listen to. My community has always been very supportive. I think people love to see someone going a bit against the norm, doing what they want to do.
When did you start writing and playing? What inspired you to start writing your own music?
I wrote my first song when I was about 7. Songwriting has always been something I’ve done. I used to record little songs onto a cassette on a karaoke machine in my room then make my whole family listen. It became something a bit more serious when I was about 14 and I started to sit down at the piano and really try to put good songs together, then I’d share them on youtube for my friends to listen to. Songwriting has always been a natural way for me to communicate my feelings. I suppose it just started as something to do for myself; but when people said they liked the songs I was writing, it was kind of a light bulb moment for me!
How did you find your aesthetic? Are there any specific influences you can list?
When I was in college I fell in love with The 1975 and this whole idea of "if my music was to live in a world - what would that world look like?"
Once I started thinking like that, music became a much more visual experience to me. The art and fashion behind my music are all just
reflections of my personality. They compliment each other because it’s just a reflection of me. Style-wise, the big icons to me are Audrey
Hepburn and Diane Keaton. I love things that make me feel powerful and sexy.
Who are some artists who have inspired you?
I am very influenced by Banks. I love how honest and raw her music is. She’s an absolute power-house as well. Jeff Buckley is another huge influence for me, those haunting, ethereal tones are just everything. I really grew up with ‘Grace’ so I think that's always going to influence me in my music as well.
What are you listening to right now?
Right now, I’m loving SZA’s album! Also a lot of Haim. I think it's safe to say women in music are killing it at the moment.
Could you tell me more about writing your single “The Thread?”
The Thread is a song I wrote a couple of years ago now. It was one of those songs that really wrote itself. I was in quite a dark headspace and I came home at the end of the day and just started singing this song as I was taking my makeup off. It all just came out of my mouth and I was fumbling for my phone to make sure I recorded it. I was thinking, surely that’s already a song? Cause it all just floated out of me! I felt the biggest weight off my shoulders after I finished, it really helped me to move on from what I was going through at the time. Later that day I added the chords on the piano and finished everything off. Then later in the year, I met a producer, Ed Cook, who worked on the track with me and we really brought it to life! Ed now produces all of my tracks with me, so I feel like The Thread is really special, it was the beginning of this whole journey really.
Have you faced any obstacles navigating the music industry because you are a woman?
It’s definitely a very male dominated business, and being a young woman makes some people assume you’re going to be naive about how this industry works, but I think it’s a very exciting time for women in music. More and more women are stepping up and totally bossing being producers, managers, DJs, and artists. Girls are really coming together and supporting one another and it’s amazing!
What is some advice you would give to other women trying to get into music?
Just go for it and pour everything you have into it. When you’re passionate about something, no one can argue any different. When someone’s passionate about what they’re doing, there’s going to be people out there that will want to listen. Just don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t do it.
Any idea when we will be hearing more music from you?
My next single is going to be out in September. It’s been a long time coming but I’m really excited about this one.
To find more from Gretchin click here. Or visit her Faebook here.
To find her on Instagram: @gretchininmusic
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