I recently had the opportunity to speak with singer and producer Cosette about her experience being the sole songwriter and producer on her new single “Strings” and the artists who have inspired her journey. Check out our conversation below!
Brew Music Friday: Let me start by congratulating you on the release of “Strings”! The blend you’ve crafted between the traditional strings sample and pop is so fascinating. Can you tell me a bit about how the song came to be?
Cosette: Thank you so much! “Strings” started from me finding this old record of orchestral music that was just begging to be flipped. I started building the beat around the violin sample and at some point it started turning into a more uplifting hopeful sound despite starting off dark. I looked around my room while listening back on a loop and saw so many clothes and gifts from my ex boyfriend lying around my room. I realized I needed to get rid of all of it if I was wanting to have a fresh start. But when I got to his letters, I couldn’t throw those away, hence the lyrics “I’ll take all your thoughts that you’ve written down in pen and I’ll keep it somewhere locked. I swear I’ll never forget it.”
BMF: So how are we feeling with the release?! I can imagine that it must be such a mixed feeling of excitement and anxiety over the world finally hearing it.
C: I feel so happy that this vision is finally born. This song is the first time I feel like the sonics accurately portrayed my emotions and not just the lyrics. Even without my voice I feel like it tells my story. I always get nervous on release day, but overall I’m just so happy that it’s finally born.
BMF: You’ve taken a lot of risks with your production throughout your discography but even more prevalently in “Strings”. Is it something you set out to do with each track or is it an unconscious decision?
C: I’m so honored to hear you think my production takes risks. That is absolutely the goal! When I listen to music, what grabs me personally is little production ear candy, the weirder the better. I want to make people’s heads tilt, squint their eyes and furrow their eyebrows when they listen to my music. I hope people are engaged and surprised every eight bars.
BMF: Who do you feel has inspired you the most as a rising producer and songwriter?
C: Every couple months I tend to find a different artist to obsess over that inspires me. This year particularly it has been Caroline Polachek which is definitely the main inspiration for this specific track. I also am very inspired by Brakence lately, Charli XCX and FKA Twigs. Throughout my discography though, I feel like the 1975’s Matty Healy has said in interviews that he runs with the first lyrics that come to mind, the way they’re originally phrased when they first come out. I use that strategy in my lyrics.
BMF: As a fellow writer, I know just as well as you that writing comes from a place of vulnerability. For me, my pen feels most powerful when I’m making art out of my pain. What do you feel drives you creatively?
C: I write when I’m inspired and only when I’m inspired. I usually feel like writing when I’m trying to analyze my relationships. I play moments over in my head and think about how I felt, what I looked like, what my body language was, what their body language was, what my motive was, what their motive was. I definitely tend to make my art out of pain, but the goal is to understand it, find the lesson and learn from it.
BMF: Do you remember the first song you ever wrote?
C: My mom has some crumbled pieces of paper that carry my first songs from when I was a kid but I don’t remember those. The first one I remember is from freshman year of highschool, something I wrote on guitar about getting butterflies riding in the car with a boy. I tend to always want to refer to memories in the car in my writing, it’s hard to refrain! Nashville’s a driving city so a lot of important memories take place there.
BMF: Having sole writing and producing credits is no small feat, but is there any artist or producer who you’d love to work with someday?
C: There are so many, Pharrell, Tyler the Creator, Ariana Grande, and Kanye West to name a few. As well as all the artists I listed earlier that have been inspiring me recently. I would love to have them produce for me, but I would absolutely die If I could produce for or with them.
BMF: You recently played a few shows in LA! How does it feel to be performing in front of crowds again after quarantine really hit us all so hard?
C: Yes! I just got back from those shows in LA and I am so happy I had the opportunity to play out there. It feels peaceful, I love telling my stories before I start the song and being vulnerable with a room full of strangers. I am so glad the world has opened back up. I have met many lovely people in person which is so refreshing with all the time spent on social media.
BMF: Even in 2022, the music industry still has a serious gender inequality issue, specifically behind the scenes and on the production end of things. What does it mean for you to be a trailblazing female producer?
C: Trailblazing! Thank you so much! I hope to show other women that the tech side isn’t just for boys. You don’t have to wait to find the right producer to execute your tracks. Without sounding presumptuous, I hope to one day inspire other girls.
BMF: What can fans expect to hear when your next EP drops later this year?
C: They can expect more orchestral sample flips and more beat switch ups. They can also expect some elements of hyperpop and more experimental EDM in there as well. I feel like this EP showcases a range of genres and blends them so there’s something for everyone. I’m definitely experimenting and avoiding structure and formula.