Bridging the gap between alt-pop and mainstream appeal, SHANNON SAUNDERS is a perfect example of an independent artist with the potential to crossover to the charts in what feels like the very imminent future. Take one listen to her recent single ‘Rips In Your Jeans’ and you will understand exactly what is meant by that. Between its pulsing undercurrent, club-ready synths and Shannon’s husky yet sweet vocal, ‘Rips In Your Jeans’ is set to be the anthem for these summer months.
The singer-songwriter – who originally cut her teeth on Youtube – has built an impressive fanbase over the past five years, transitioning from covering songs to sharing her own tracks and orchestrating the visuals to boot (she directed and edited the video below.) Her DIY ethic is certainly admirable and we can’t wait to hear more, so we thought it best to grab hold of Sharon and see what she has in store for the rest of 2017. Oh, and being as it’s Friday, she’s sorted you a playlist of her favourite anthems for you to rock at this weekend’s house party – how kind!
Your latest single ‘Rips In Your Jeans’ is a perfect slice of electro-pop – it feels massive! Can you tell us a little about the track and what inspired it?
It’s about the ongoing conversations we have with ourselves, our hopes and fears when things get heavy but then finding the strength to salvage what was there to turn it all around and hold it all together. Being there for each other, supporting each other and just working it out together basically.
The video for ‘Rips In Your Jeans’ has quite a DIY aesthetic. You looked like you had a lot of fun; did you make it yourself and have full creative control?
I directed and edited the video myself and it was so much fun. Having my listeners be a part of the video was so much fun. Meeting them and just hanging out for the day in Blitz was great and they were all so up for it which made it all the more enjoyable.
‘Rips In Your Jeans’ is quite different from you previous single ‘Pure’, which is more of an understated electronic ballad. What inspired the change?
Each of my songs has it’s own storyline and the production for ‘Pure’ wouldn’t necessarily suit what ‘Rip In Your Jeans’ was all about. We had a lot of fun playing around with it. Expect more of that from my next few releases. I’m just really enjoying having the freedom to create and release whatever I want to at the moment.
Your sound always feels fresh yet still unabashedly pop. What keeps you inspired when creating music?
I have two incredible producers who are always up for creating something fresh so we spend a lot of time playing with new sounds and coming up with storylines and lyric ideas together. When it comes to writing I’m inspired by random things everyday so it’s hard to pinpoint what it actually is that makes me want to write. It just depends on what’s happening in my life at that moment in time and how I’m feeling.
You seamlessly blend elements of dance and house alongside your flawless vocal. Are there any artists that have inspired your musical journey over the years?
I’m a huge James Blake fan and have always loved the way his voice works so well with the more electronic elements he uses in his music. Bon Iver and Bonobo also have a huge place in my heart.
You started out on YouTube, posting song covers before sharing your own music. Do you feel it was a great way to test the waters of being a songwriter and musician?
Absolutely. YouTube is definitely the reason I’m doing what I do today.
What has been your proudest achievement to date?
I loved playing at Radio 1’s Big Weekend last year with BBC Introducing. That was pretty special. Playing a sold out show at the Roundhouse with Wilkinson in February was pretty amazing too.
Will you be releasing any more new music in the near future? What can we expect from you in 2017?
Yes! I’ve actually been sorting out my artwork for my next single all day today. I’m really excited about this one.
Shannon’s latest single ‘Rips In Your Jeans’ is available now.