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photos / Nicole Brannen

Fresh-faced pop ingenue Robinson has brought an emotional and vulnerable side to music that combines intimacy and melodies in perfect matrimony. The songstress has had a year attention-grabbing tracks that have now amassed over 50 million streams worldwide and achieved Platinum certification in Australia and Gold in New Zealand. Her hit ‘Nothing to Regret’ has been played on repeat by outlets from Zane Lowe at Beats 1 as well as Radio 1.  Ahead of her highly-anticipated debut UK performance at Thousand Island in The Garage, London tonight she has released the moody intricate ‘Don’t Trust Myself’ and chats with us about traveling, loving life and music.
How did you get into music?
Music is something that has been a part of my life ever since I can remember! My mum’s side of the family is very musical. My Grandparent’s sung and played the piano and it was something that my mum and her siblings also grew up learning and being completely surrounded by. It was funny because singing was such a huge part of my life, but when my Mum tried to teach me the piano at age 9, I absolutely refused! It wasn’t until I was around 12 that I started to learn on my own when I started properly diving into writing music. Music has always been a huge part of my life and has been one of those things that was the only thing I ever wanted to do as a career so no matter what, I think I would’ve always found a way to do it because I’m so passionate about it and it’s always been there since I can remember! I think I really started to write more and more as I got into high school, and put so much of my time into learning to play the piano and guitar and just writing songs.
I love the song and video for “Nothing To Regret” so much. Was there a particular person you were singing to?
Thank you so much! I’m so glad you like it! I think ‘Nothing To Regret’ was never about a particular person but rather singing out to those moments when we’re feeling low and sick of the hardships that we feel in life sometimes, and just putting those feelings aside and letting go of those stresses and worries and just learning to find the fun in things!
Does it ever feel weird seeing other people singing along to your songs? When was the first time that happened for you?
Hearing other people cover my music is always the coolest feeling ever! I think it may of been this year actually and it was truly surreal to think someone had connected with my music so much, they did their own take of it! It’s so special when I hear covers of my songs, and that magical feeling will never go away.
What are some of your biggest muses?
I am such a Jeff Buckley fan. The pure emotion in his music is something that is really so moving and emotional to me. One of my favorite songs of all time is Jeff Buckley’s ‘All Flowers In Time Bend Towards The Sun’ featuring the vocals of Liz Fraser. That is the kind of music I really really look up to and always come late at night.
New Zealand has quite a scene when it comes to music, fashion, art etc. How did it affect your art when you were first starting?
The New Zealand scene is so so cool and there is so much happening! I think coming from a very small town in New Zealand really influenced my writing and music and I was always playing outdoors and experiencing life. I also think when there was nothing else to do, I would just work on my music and learn how to play the piano so that was very cool to grow up being able to put so much time into what I love.
What does it take to be a good collaborator?
To be a good collaborator, I think it takes a lot of openness, honesty and fearlessness. A lot of my time is spent writing, alone and with others… but before, I had always written alone for so long, so to go into co-writing was a huge change for me. You have to go in being open to new ideas and criticism, the ability to communicate how you’re feeling and respecting other peoples ideas. It’s not always easy opening up to a stranger but you usually find a way that works for you. Sometimes, you may put two people together and it won’t work on a creative level but I have learnt that there is something to gain from each and every time you are in a room with another human being and you have to see past those sessions that don’t work because they usually contribute to the ones that do!

What are the goals for your music and art?
My goals are to keep growing as a person, and to, therefore, grow as a musician. I want to be able to keep experimenting and trying new things, but always staying true to what I want to do. My goal is to make a lifelong career out of my music and to be able to spend my whole life singing, writing and touring with music.
Tell us about a recent “Living your best life” moment?
I recently was flying to Australia for a promo trip which is only a two – three-hour flight, but I was traveling with my manager who was flying business class. At the check-in desk, I had changed my seat in Economy to an aisle seat but when I got on the plane, I realized it was probably the worst seat on the whole plane… It didn’t have a screen in front and was in a weird place so I was messaging my manager and telling him how funny it all was and about 10 minutes later, the air hostess came up to me and said “I think you’re due for an upgrade” and I was like “waiiiiiit…. me?!?!…. MEEEE???” and I moved to business class and literally was like a kid hahaha! I was pressing every button and although it was only a 2 and a half hour flight, I made sure to make the most of it!
Does Traveling effect your music?
Travelling has been such a huge part of my personal and musical growth, and really effects my music in so many ways. My first overseas trip independently was when I was 19, and it was to Los Angeles. I had never co-written before, so the lead up to the trip was me wondering what it would be like to write and share emotions so in depth with another person that I had just met. I remember wanting to go to LA since I was 14, and touching down was so cinematic and movie like to me. It felt so surreal to be in LA for some reason, and I always think back to that trip and how much I learned and how far I’ve come. I think that feeling of independent travel can stir up so many different emotions when writing, because I was experiencing so many new things on my own without anyone to turn to except my writing book – seeing the world alone is just so eye-opening and I truly feel I’ve come to know myself so much more because of it. Not only the traveling side but also working with people from different countries is such a big learning experience and can really help develop new ways to do things when it comes to writing. I always feel a little bit more musically experimental when I travel as well, probably because I’m so far from home but it’s always been so essential to just try different things and always be pushing myself.
Can you tell us some of your favorite places you have been?
I honestly love something different about each place I’ve been to. I love how sunny and fun LA is… there’s always something to do there! I love how cool and edgy New York is as well as the style and overall mood of the place, I really felt on top of the world there. New York felt so magical to me! And then London feels very homely, cool and edgy… It’s such a ‘feels like home’ feeling whenever I’m there and then Stockholm was amazing due to the fact I felt so safe, welcomed and absolutely loved the style of the city. I love every place I’ve been to for a different reason!
Do you like performing on stage or being in the studio more and why?
Performing is still pretty new to me compared to being in the studio and just writing. I think being in the studio is my favorite thing in the whole world because it’s just a creative space to just go crazy and make music! It’s just four walls, a bunch of instrumentals and this incredible creative surge that comes over the whole room… to me, there isn’t a feeling that beats it but performing is so amazing for different reasons. It’s connecting with people and having moments with others who need to step away from their everyday life for a minute and just let go. I love the energy you can create with people you’ve never met before and that is such an incredible part of music.
What is your songwriting process?
My songwriting process changes each time I go to approach a song. Usually, it comes together as soon as I get to the piano, I’ll just start playing with different chords and seeing what melodies flow best overtop of them. After that, usually, words come and flow along with those melodies. I always find the song is best written at that moment, if I step away from it for a day or two, it can sometimes be hard to revisit that emotion and recreate that feeling of that specific time I was at the piano but it really does change each time! I think that is what keeps it fun and exciting! You never know what is going to happen!
If you could have a song title for how you feel right now what would it be?
‘The gym didn’t work out today’ 🙁 hahaha sad but true.




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