Hailed as London’s ‘Last Sweetheart’, singer songwriter, producer and model Laurel has just stepped onto the music (and fashion) scene enticing us with her unique lyrics, voice and style. While her sound feels different and a little darker to that of her peers, she impresses with a positive attitude and a charming confidence. Ahead of her trip to the US, the twenty-year-old spared some time to talk to us about her love of Wildfox, the influence fashion has on her song writing and how giving up is no option.
Self Service: Could you talk us through your journey into music?
Laurel: I started writing songs when I was 11, by the time I was 14 more seriously. I was writing folk songs back then. When I was 17, I started making the sort of music as it is today. For those who are not familiar with my sound, think Florence [and the Machine], Lorde and Lana [del Rey]. I’ve always been more interested in the darker tones and started producing my own music when I was about 18 as I was fed up writing with other people. I just started playing around on my computer and that’s how today’s sounds came about.
SSUK: You also model…
L: This is quite a recent thing. Back in September I met with Next Models who were interested in signing me so I’m doing that on the side. But I’m a musician first.
SSUK: There is a parallel between music and fashion. In what way do the two merge in your music?
L: Fashion is everywhere and I’m really interested in editorials. I read lots of magazines, such as Vogue and i-D. I find the way that people write about fashion really inspiring. Lots of my songs are based on words from fashion magazines. For example, my current single ‘To The Hills’ is based on a Vogue editorial which was titled ‘Off to the Hills’ or similar, it was about going to America which I was then about to do, so it was a fit. ‘The Desert’ also came from an editorial on camel clothes.
L: I’m following lots of fashion blogs and models. There’s nobody in particular but I love looking at people who put up healthy things and reading their posts in the morning when you’re hung-over. Looking at other people’s posts of healthy Kiwi breakfasts and morning exercises is very inspiring. And I really love Mary Kate and Ashley [Olsen].
SSUK: Can you describe your perfect summer day?
L: I’m in the sun, on a croquet lawn, having a barbecue, drinking Pimms, getting drunk with some friends. That sounds really posh which I’m not. If I’m by the sea, I’d be down the beach surfing.
SSUK: What’s your favourite summer outfit?
L: At the moment it’s definitely all white. I’m obsessed with white: white socks, white dress, white shoes, white jacket. But it’s a difficult colour to wash.
SSUK: What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?
L: My mum loves quotes. I’ve got a good motivational one written on my studio wall that says, “Give up, give in or give it your all.” When I’m in the studio and I’m fed up because things are not working, I look at the wall. You’ve really got these three options, so you might as well give it your all. What else can you do?
SSUK: What’s in store for Classic Laurel in the future?
L: I’m just about to go to America, to New York. I’ll be playing at Northside Festival [in Brooklyn]. After that I’m going to Canada where I’ll be playing in Toronto. Then I’m back in England for some summer festivals. I’ve also got a new song ‘Shells’ coming out and the video will be up in July.
SSUK: What do you love about Wildfox?
L: I wore some Wildfox glasses in an editorial and afterwards I begged the stylist to keep them. I follow the Wildfox Facebook and love all the styles and the stuff that they put on there every day. I tend to look at social media in the morning as I’m often too tired at night. It really inspires me to keep fit looking at all the healthy people in beautiful clothes.
Listen to Laurel’s beautiful tracks on Soundcloud.