Interviews

Q&A: Odette Peters

For those wanting more soulful sounds in their lives, Odette Peters is the gal for you. First aspiring to be a poet and initially training in classical music, Peters later discovered a love for jazz and soul which sent her down a rabbit hole of sleek sounds. Now, at 22 years old, Peters is catapulted herself into the forefront of UK soul. Showcasing her glorious vocals, her latest single “Lose My Mind” is simply glorious. Here’s what the soulful newcomer had to say when we caught up with her recently.

Hey Odette! Tell us more about your new groovy single “Lose My Mind”.

‘Lose My Mind’ is all about female empowerment. It’s not a ballad in any sense but lyrically says a lot. It’s got a lot of substance. I guess that’s not always expected of Neo-Soul because lyrically it’s often more easy-going but I like that. I want to say something with my music. I wrote the lyrics after I’d overheard a conversation about a young woman who had entered a very male-dominated work place and found the only person who she felt really didn’t want her to move up through the company and succeed was in fact another woman. The song talks about competition and comparison between women and how there should be so much less of it.

It sounds very nostalgic, but who doesn’t adore a jazz-inspired record – did you grow up listening to jazz and soul?

I definitely grew up on a diet of Soul. Mum shared her love for Diana Ross and Nina Simone with me for sure. Jazz was something I was introduced to later on though, I left Manchester to study Classical music in London when I was 16 and was really drawn to the Jazz department there which was the beginning of it all.

You sing about very real subjects of life, the new single looks at patriarchy, whilst your debut ‘What A Lovely Day’ touches on a variety of issues. Do you think it’s important to create music about worldwide issues? 

Yeah, I think I’m driven by that a lot when songwriting, but it’s not necessarily worldwide issues, it’s just topics that I come across in my own life, which I don’t think people shed enough light on. It’s special that I can combine my creative output with using my voice to talk about something that is relevant to me and which I want more people to be talking about. I want to create the kind of music that starts conversations and ‘What A Lovely Day’ definitely did that with regards to mental health. I hope ‘Lose My Mind’ starts some conversations too.

What do you think makes the London female voice so perfect for neo-soul records?

I think that a lot of music coming out of London is in fact from people who have come from all over to make music here. When you think about it like that, I guess anyone who has been brave enough to make that move must really know who they are and exactly what they want to create. For me, that’s the sound that is coming out of the Neo-Soul and Jazz scene in London at the moment. It’s sure of itself and staying true to itself.

Musically, who are the artists who inspire you the most? 

This literally changes by the day but Kate Bush was a creative phenomenon and Nina Simone was so eloquent within her music. Those guys will always be up there as my influences.

Can we catch you live soon?

Yes! I’ll be playing Lunacincos Festival at Colours on Jan 31st. I’m excited for this one! I think it’ll be a fun start to 2020.

And finally, as it is the season to be jolly, what are your plans for Christmas? 

I’ll be spending time with my sisters and mum up in Manchester, but only for a couple of days most likely. I’ve just got so much to do so I need to be back in London. 2020 is going to be a busy one.

 

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Q&A: Odette Peters
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