Tuesday, 16 September 2014

We're Only Here For The Banter - Best Girl Athlete

Hailing from Aberdeen, Katie Buchan makes sweet indie-pop music under the name Best Girl Athlete.  Having grown up around, and participated in, the music of her father CS Buchan, Katie has a grounding not afforded to many other young musicians.  Having caught the ear of many with her music, I caught up for a good ol' Scottish Fiction chat.

Hello!  How the devil are you?

Hiya, I’m doing great thanks!

It's the question everyone hates, but could illuminate our readers with a little bit about your music and your influences?

I guess I would describe our music as indie-pop, it’s been said that our music is quite similar to Camera Obscura.  As for musical influences, I’d say I find influence in other young artists like Birdy and Gabrielle Aplin, both major favourites of mine.  Their music is just so relaxing and laid-back, I remember when I bought Birdy’s first album I just sat in awe, and I would say they inspired me to start writing my own songs!

What's your song-writing / creative process like?

I usually start with a guitar chord sequence and work around that.  Next comes lyrics, followed by bass, drums and sometimes strings.  We have an amazing string arranger called Pete Harvey, who adds such a different tone and definition to our music.  Being able to hear a finished piece after starting with 4 or 5 chords and some lyrics is such an amazing feeling.

What could we expect to see from a live show?

I think we have come a long way with the live shows since we started in terms of confidence but they are still usually a bit shambolic but a lot of fun.  We don’t have a band as such and just call on some very talented friends that play in other bands (IndianRedLopez / The Little Kicks / Tryptamines) when we have gigs.  Funnily enough we don’t really ever rehearse but it somehow works!

Tell us about forthcoming album Carve Every Word.

It’s been such an exciting process, never in a million years did I ever expect to be releasing an album, and as cheesy as it may sound it’s such an honour to be releasing it with my Dad.  The songs that will feature in Carve Every Word  will vary from songs about hamsters to songs about the weather in winter, so I’d say it’s a bit of an all-rounder on the songwriting spectrum!

The album is being released through US label Minty Fresh Records.  How did that partnership come about?

Minty Fresh picked up on Leave it all Behind through a song placement agency, and got in touch to ask if we had any more songs with me singing on them.  The more tracks we sent, the more they became interested and that’s sorta how the album came about.  We ended up with the luxury of having about 20 songs to choose from for the album.

What else have you got planned for the rest of 2014?

We had hoped to travel over to America to promote the album in October but funding has proved rather difficult to secure for this, and finding a band to tour with was also rather difficult to get, so at the minute nothing much.  Saying that, the album will likely be released in late October and if nothing comes up for us in the States, we will probably look to do a short Scottish tour so keep your eyes peeled for that!

What are you listening to at the moment?

Ooh that’s quite a tricky question for me because I’m always listening to new and different music, but I’d have to say my favourite album at the minute is the Submarine  EP by Alex Turner, even though it’s not new I have only recently discovered its existence and I have to say when I first listened to the EP I felt like I had entered into heaven.  Also I have been really liking Foster The People’s new song, Best Friend.

Thanks for speaking with us, would you care to share a joke with us?

Unfortunately I don’t have any jokes, but luckily for you I went to see Richard Thompson a few nights ago at Aberdeen Music Hall and he had a joke for the audience when he had to change a string. This is how it went:

I had to take my wife to the hospital last week because she fell into an upholstery machine.  But it’s okay, she’ll re-cover, and the doctor said she’s comfortable.

Boom boom!

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