26 March 2012

Fresh Meat Monday - Plum

Would you care to introduce yourself?  

Hello, I'm Shona, I make music under the name Plum (nickname from early childhood)   

How would you describe the music you make?  

Cathartic, emotive, honest, flitting from genre to genre, heavily influenced by electronic music     

How did you start out making music?   

As soon as I picked up a guitar and learnt 4 chords I started writing songs. I used to skip study period at High School to go learn Cubase under the stage with the cool Technician Ian Mackenzie. Then I did work experience at BBC Scotland and bluffed my way into editing reel to reel tape with a razor blade (they believed I did that in school), which inspired me a lot around sampling...then did work experience (I was onto something) at Split Level Recording Studios. So snippets here and there throughout my teens, but it wasn't til I went to Point Blank music production college in Hackney in 2006 that I really started making music that I was happy with.   

What process goes into the way you write songs?  

I write from the heart always. The Seed (the new album) is the first concept album I've written, which gave me a lot of food for thought with the lyrics, and I was able to adapt my experiences to fit with the metaphors of growth of seeds, ideas, weeds, parasitic vines etc. it's about the seed of an idea, being left to grow in your mind. And mostly it's about abusive relationships and how they have impacted on my views and beliefs.  Sometimes I start with a sample I've collected from somewhere which will form the beat...or I'll start with my guitar late at night and alone, and I'll play notes that resonate my mood until I find something that fits. Then I'll sit at the computer and fill it out one instrument or synth at a time. Sometimes it feels like the music writes itself and I'm just the medium. I hit a wall for about 15 months where I didn't like anything I wrote, then suddenly I was unstoppable. I have had help with production where I've been stuck from Keir MacCulloch and Kyle MacKenzie.   

What can people expect from your live shows? 

I have no idea how to answer that...working on the live set up for the new album this very weekend. Got only 2 tracks ready. I'll say they can probably expect a girl playing guitar or bass guitar or keys (depending on the song), singing about her life, with someone doing live electronics.     

What are you all listening to at the moment?   

I just discovered Sharon Van Etten on Thursday morning - and I think she is fantastic. Inspirational, her music is very bare, and vulnerable, which translates to bravery when sung unashamedly.    

What can we expect to see/hear from you in the future? 

Hopefully more animated music videos...really enjoyed shooting the stop-frame music video for The Seed - we turned my entire living-room into cardboard! More involvement with that kind of thing would be great!

Plum - The Truth & The Knife


Plum - The Seed (Official Music Video) from Greg Hoyna / Pencil Rebel on Vimeo.

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