Delving into the cinematic pop genre, we caught up with singer-songwriter I.AM.WILLOW to chat musical inspo, dream collabs and career highlights.
What does a day in the life of I AM WILLOW look like?
I never know from week to week what my schedule will be like but I’m always in a writing session. Sometimes writing for artists, sometimes for the film/sync world. Either way, I’m always making music.
When did you first realise you wanted to make music?
I was around 10 years old when I wrote my first piano piece. It was for a talent show and my friends were ballet dancers. They needed some music to dance to so I wrote a cute little accompaniment for them. It went down such a treat. Soon after I started writing songs and I’ve never looked back.
How would you describe your sound?
I AM WILLOW is a cross over between a grand cinematic soundscape and catchy pop hooks … my sound just keeps growing though. It’s very exciting.
What’s the best gig you’ve ever played?
hmmmmmm …. I once launched an EP back when I had another project going. So many people showed up that they could barely move. I was very emotional about it haha.
If you could collaborate with anyone who would it be and why?
M83!!! They have been an inspiration to me for a while. They fall into this beautiful cinematic soundscape too but have done this in such a contemporary way. They are modernising soundtrack music. I just know we would work magic together!
Who did you listen to growing up?
I grew up with classical music mostly, but my mum loved Michael Jackson. I guess it makes sense now I think about it. Classical meets pop haha. My grandma was my piano teacher so I wasn’t really given a choice. I had to learn piano! I didn’t always appreciate it … But now I’m so grateful! It’s definitely moulded me into the writer and artist that I am.
Who’s your biggest musical inspiration?
I have a cocktail of biggest inspirations – Woodkid, M83, SIA, Beyonce, Ludovico Einaudi, Kevin Garrett, Alt J … they are all equally responsible for my sound.
What’s your guilty pleasure track?
I don’t feel guilty about any of the music I listen to. But whenever I come across a Spice Girls song I feel like a little girl all over again.
What’s the last album you listened to all the way through?
Goldfrapp’s ‘Felt Mountain’
What’s been your career highlight/proudest moment?
Performing at a private show just for Annie Lenox.
Who’s the coolest person you’ve worked with so far?
Wow! That’s a tough one! I guess one of my favourite people I’ve worked with, and still do, is Rotana. She’s from Saudi Arabia and standing up for women to have the equal rights that men have. For example, the right to sing! She has just released her first 2 singles which went straight to the Spotify Top 50 Viral US charts. I am honestly so proud to be her co-writer.
Who are you listening to at the moment?
A bunch of artists: Glass Animals, M83, The Weekend, Ella Fitzgerald, Julia Michaels , a bunch of soundtrack albums … I can go on but it might take a while.
What advice do you have for aspiring artists trying to break into the industry?
Persistence is the most important tool in the box.
You can only listen to one album for the rest of your life, what is it?
Ludovico Einaudi ‘The Royal Albert Hall Concert’
Where can we see you perform next?
I’m not performing at the moment … I’m preparing for something even bigger 🙂
What’s on the agenda for the rest of 2017?
More music … a lot more!!
Check out her insta @Iamwillowmusic
…and listen to her new single ‘Oceanful’ on SoundCloud…