Hi Brandon, welcome to VENTS! How have you been?
Very good thank you, shaved my head before a photoshoot this morning, so feeling very reinvigorated.
Can you talk to us more about your latest single “Girlplay”?
It’s an encapsulation of the ‘boy chases girl but her friends hate the boy’ scenario in a nightclub, while being young, being horny, being awkward, being shy – everyone’s seen or witnessed something like that, but never put it on wax.
Did any event in particular inspire you to write this song?
All my songs are autobiographical, it will probably be my downfall, this song was written in the toilets of XOYO the night it happened last year. I found myself being drawn to a narcissistic girl who essentially used people/men to get whatever she wanted, whenever she wanted.
Any plans to release a video for the single?
Definitely, but I’d be looking for label attention first, it’d be a complete visual representation of the audio – sexy, dark, druggy and loud, I’d want Kaya Scodelario and Jack O’Connell who play Effy and James from Skins to star in it, so as you can imagine, not cheap.
How was the recording and writing process?
The track was written and produced by me initially, but then me and my musical partner ‘Baerli’ decided to head down to Cornwall last summer and record a few of these tracks with some input from Mark Hill (AKA Artful Dodger), I’m a massive Craig David fan (growing up in Southampton myself) and so to have his input on the track was fantastic.
How has The Weeknd and Drake influenced your writing?
The darkness and uncertainty in their music is something I can relate to myself, maybe it’s being the only British-Asian kid from The New Forest, but I always looked up to American/Canadian music much more than British music, to me it always spoke volume, but that’s probably part of the desire, on my part, to be misunderstood.
What role does East London play in your music?
To begin with, there is no one musically in East London that sounds relatively close to me, not even a single comparison springs to mind, this was the same as in the New Forest but it is definitely amplified more in London due to the expectance I had for a ‘scene’.
Lyrically, the nightlife and social camaraderie definitely influenced my writing when I moved here, but my heart will always be in the New Forest. I live in London currently but the majority of my writing has always been informed by the similarly contrasting aspects of East London and South Coast life.
Does the new single mean we can expect a new material – how’s that coming along?
New material is done, most of it was actually written before I wrote ‘GIRLPLAY’, and if you thought that track was good, damn, you aren’t ready.
Any tentative release date or title in mind?
I’d be disappointed if we didn’t get the next track out by at least late August/ early September, I haven’t decided on the next release but it will probably be either ‘you’re so bad’ or ‘my new obsession’ (All stylized in lower caps).
Any plans to hit the road?
I’ll be performing at Camp Bestival in late july, and currently in the process of booking some small shows across the country that you can all find out about on my socials.
What else is happening next in Brandon Rivers’ world?
New tracks, New image, New releases and New Shows – you’re gonna love it.