A Q&A with Charlotte OC

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You’re playing at Highest Point Festival, are you excited?
C- I’ve not played a festival in so long, so yeah, I’m very excited! Also all my family are coming up too so its gonna a lovely for me to have them there.

Is there anyone else on the line-up you’re really excited to see at the festival?
C – I’m a fan of James Zabiela, and obviously Sister Sledge: ‘Thinking of You’ is one of my favourite songs.

How much do you know about the festival, and Lancaster and Williamson Park more generally, obviously being from Lancashire yourself?
C – I’ve just heard from people I know who have been how beautiful the festival is; the surroundings and the general vibe of the weekend is meant to be brilliant!

You were amongst the first acts to be announced for Highest Point, obviously reflecting how far up the line-up you are; how does it feel to be trusted in such a prestigious spot?
C – Feels lovely! BBC introducing have always been so good with me, and have given me so much support so it’s good to have that kind of recognition.

Charlotte is playing on the BBC Introducnig Stage on Friday, alongside some of these artists!

Your tour has a massive gap between your current US and European legs – kicking off in Lancaster; how are you going to spend the time off between now and Highest Point?
C – First things first I’m gonna chill out with my family and loved ones as I’ve not seen them in so long and I always miss them like mad when I’m on tour. After that I’m heading back into the studio to write some more; there’s something about playing a bunch of shows that gives you ideas for new tunes.

What’s your favourite festival been that you’ve played at? And why do you think that they’re so successful as a medium to listen to music?
C – The one that always stayed with me was Lowlands in Holland. I think it was the biggest crowd I’ve played to and they just completely got me and got totally involved. Its such a beautiful and well organised festival as well, the whole crew there were so nice to me as well. I just think when the setting is right and you’re surrounded by people who are feeling the same as you there is just something magical about it. It also feels like when you’re at a festival you get to be a kid again for just a couple of days; no cares and you’re all just there to enjoy yourself and be moved by great music.

Check out some of Charlotte’s tracks!

Obviously everyone involved with BBC Introducing (whose stage you’re performing on) has a lot of good things to say about how they help grow the audience of small artists, do you have any particular experiences with them that stand out?
C – I have to give a massive shout out to Sean McGinty from BBC Introducing Lancashire. He has supported me from day one and he always plays my songs and for that I’m so genuinely grateful for every bit of support he’s given me.

Despite growing up in Lancashire, most of your early successes have been in America – what was it like having such attention at such a young age?
C – I honestly think i was way too young to be comfortable with any of it. Things weren’t helped by the team around me, with hindsight they weren’t right for me at the time, so that didn’t help. As you can imagine back then it all felt overwhelming. I’ve only just come to terms with who I am recently, and to be honest there’s still so much more growing up to be done. Especially from the age or 18 to 28, you change drastically.

There was quite a big gap between your first and second albums after being dropped by Columbia and signing with Stranger Records. How difficult was that few years in between record deals? And what was it like having to then restart the rigmarole of releasing EPs and building a fan-base once you did re-sign?
C – It didn’t feel difficult, it felt more necessary. And I knew that the right fans would stay with me and join me on my new stage I was about to embark on.  I needed time to find out who I was. Change and time are so important in any career

Your new single, ‘Boyfriend’, came out at the start of last month, what has the reaction to that been like?
C – It’s been wonderful! I’m so proud of that tune, so I was genuinely buzzing to get it out finally.

‘Boyfriend’ follows your singles ‘Movement’ and ‘Satellite’, does this run mean that there could be an album on the way in the near future?
C – ‘Movement’ is actually a cover of song written by Hozier; I wish I had written that! [laughs]. But I’m just gonna keep releasing EPs for now. The pressure of an album is just so time consuming and it feels more natural to just make music and release it and just keep the cycle going. But more music is coming soon!

In the past, ‘Vice’ has compared you and your sound to both Stevie Nicks and Adele, who would you compare your style to? And how would you describe it?
C – Stevie Nicks has played a big part of my musical identity when it comes to inspiration. Her vibe speaks to me and I understand her world completely. I honestly don’t know how I’d describe me or my style though. There’s a classic tone in all my songs, but I’m drawn to electronic sounds.

Image by Justin Higuchi, via Flickr.com

Your collaboration with Wankelmut, ‘Almost Mine’, is on almost 10 million streams on Spotify; how did that collaboration come about?
C – My publishers had me in mind when they heard the demo with the guide vocals on it and when I heard it myself it felt like something I could sing well over. Wankelmut is the sweetest guy and I loved working with him on this.

If you had to choose another artist to collaborate with now, who would it be?
C – I’d love to work with Cinematic Orchestra, I went to see them at the Roundhouse in London and it was beautiful. Also I’d love to collaborate with Maribou State. I think I could’ve written something amazing with Bowie and Freddie Mercury too.

Are there any music or artists in particular that you’re really enjoying at the moment?
C – RY X’s new album is amazing! I’ve been listening to a lot of Bibio, Agnes Obel, War on Drugs and Society and stuff like that as well.

You can catch Charlotte OC on Friday 17th May at Highest Point Festival in Williamson Park, Lancaster; day, weekend and camping tickets are still available online, with applications for one of 1000 free tickets for emergency services workers currently still open.

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