Who’s that girl? Well, it’s Cinnamon Girl. Camilla Roholm, as she used to be known, originally from Denmark now living in London, is the latest in a rich lineage of female pop artists crossing the North Sea set to set the neon dance floor shaking. Looking like Madonna circa-Get into the Groove with the addition on an ever-present trilby and sounding like Tragic Kingdom-era Gwen Stefani, she is an amalgamation of the many things we seem to love about female pop icons: colourful sense style, empowered and defiant, big vocals and some banging tunes. What more could you want?
Camilla also (rather modestly, I must say…) writes, records and produces her tracks entirely by herself. This is not only very commendable but quite a exciting prospect if she manages to keeps her creative control as she gradually enters the pop music matrix and its reliance on ‘superstar’ producers/songwriters. She has already caught the attention of Popjustice’s Peter Robinson with her impressively catchy and well produced (by herself, of course) songs and despite being currently unsigned, we’re willing to bet a fair amount that we will be hearing a lot more of Cinnamon Girl in the not too-far distant future. I caught up with Camilla over a few emails to get to know her a bit better (spoiler alert: she’s bloody lovely!).
I have been singing my whole life. I used to drive my family nuts because I never ever stopped singing. I was like the singing plague. I picked up a guitar aged 12 and it just grew from there. Cinnamon Girl is the first thing that I have done musically that I am really truly proud of and that I know I will never look back on with any regrets even if I do continue to learn and develop my ideas, as I hope I will.
Where does the name Cinnamon Girl come from? I’ve presuming its not because of an obsession with Cinnamon Grahams…
I needed a name so one morning whilst lying in bed. I began saying random things out loud. Cinnamon Girl was about the tenth and I liked it because it sounded like a super hero. A tasty super hero! The Neil Young song title was probably floating around the back of my brain too, but I didn’t deliberately name myself after that. Or Cinnamon Grahams –you decide.
Who/what are your main influences when writing? Anything that happens in life that makes me feel something. Good or bad. It means the even the shittest clouds have a shimmery silver lining. Someone might have died or have broken your heart, but in the back of yourmind you’re thinking, “at least I’ll get some great songs out of this!”
Do you work with anyone else when writing/producing? I’ve read that you do a lot of it yourself…
Nope, it’s just little old me. I’ve done all of the writing, recording and production on these tracks. I get someone else to mix it, to make it nice and loud and shiny, but everything you hear on there came out of my crazy brain.
Your vocals remind me a lot of a young Gwen Stefani, particularly on the track Friends. Are you a fan? Did you take any cues from her in terms of your performance style? If not, whose would you like to emulate?
I actually had no idea I sounded like her until other people started pointing it out. I think she’s awesome, but any similarities in our voices are purely coincidental. I wouldn’t want to try and emulate anyone, I think it’s important to try and find your own musical identity. You’ve got to have something to say. No one wants cheap copies- we’d all be bored to death.
You’ve got quite an interesting look. Who inspires your fashion choices and how important is the visual aesthetic to your work?
Thank you. It is important in the sense that I feel what I wear is an extension of my personality and my music is part of that. I have fun with it and like to express myself through what I wear. It feels creative to take risks with your fashion choices, even if it means you get it terribly wrong sometimes. And my God, have I worn some ridiculous things at times!
What’s the plan for the rest of the year? Album, touring, festivals, writing etc.
I’m writing like crazy at the moment. It’s still really early days, but I hope to do all of the above eventually. Why the hell not?
Listen to some of Camilla’s tracks HERE