Interview: Rhosyn

So currently living in Peckham, where was home growing up?

I moved around a bit. I was born in London, lived in Wiltshire for a while, and spent my formative years growing up in Oxford.

London, Anglesey, Oxford to name a few – Where feels most like home now?

Definitely London. Anglesey is my escape and Oxford is too full of ghosts.

Was music always in the blood?

Totally. My parents were both at music college – my dad was assigned as my mum’s accompanist, that’s how they met. My dad’s a pianist and composer and my mum’s a cellist. I tried to rebel by studying fine art at college, tried really hard to become an accomplished painter, but ended up writing music on the side and eventually excepted that that’s all I ever really wanted to do.

What were your earliest memories of music / who were your musical influences?

My parents didn’t really let me listen to pop music as a young child – my favourite tapes as a kid were recordings of the Bach Brandenburg concertos and Danny Elfman’s Beetlejuice soundtrack (having never seen the film, which I eventually watched years later). My grandparents made me a tape of the best of The Andrew Sisters as a baby and I’d listen to that a lot too. I reckon those must have subconsciously influenced me in the future. Thinking about it, it makes sense!

Who are your personal influences?

To name a few… Joanna Newsom, Arthur Russell, Edith Sitwell, PJ Harvey…I’ll never forget the first time I heard PJ Harvey on the radio. I must’ve been about 12. Steve Lamaq played “Good Fortune” and I don’t think I’ve ever been so excited about a piece of music since. I’d never heard a woman sing like that before! She’s the reason I wanted to become a singer.

Who would be your dream collaboration?

I’d love to collaborate with Mira Calix.

When are you happiest?

Away from the internet.

Does music mean the most when it’s written about personal experience?

I’m a bit of a traditionalist – yeah, I think it does.

How would you describe the music of Rhosyn?

It’s me, sorting out my problems through the medium of song. And sometimes dance (when alone).

What can we expect at House of Wolf on the 21st?

I’ll be singing, playing cello, looping things. You’ll just have to come and see it!

Do you think you will need Anglesey again or has that part of your mind been permanently opened now?

Yes. Always. That place keeps me sane. To echo an earlier question, I think I’m happiest there.

What can we expect from Rhosyn in the next year?

You should expect more. We should all expect more of Rhosyn.

Couple of quickfire:

What’s on the iPod right now?

Albums I’m listening to on repeat right now:

Laurel Halo – Quarantine

Deptford Goth – Life After Defo,

Grimes – Halfaxa,

Anna Meredith – Black Prince Fury

Favourite gig?

My favourite gig I’ve played so far was at Tramway in Glasgow. Mainly because I was on the same bill as Chris & Cosey and that was the best gig I ever went to. Two birds, one stone.

Describe yourself in one word?

Mercurial.

Rhosyn is playing H.O.W.L. this Thursday.

Words: Ross Emerick