A distinct voice that reminisces a young Macy Gray. Bassette has been slowly creeping onto the music scene, having been featured on tracks with singers Joe Hertz and Mullally, she’s now back with the smooth and lax Bermuda – named after her birth home.
Born in the Caribbean island, Bassette and family moved from the sunny tropics to the snowy UK when she was just 5. Starting off in Scotland, her and her family moved to Sheffield when Bassette was 12, where she lived for most of her life. Her love and passion for singing inevitably led her to a career change, which meant having to leave uni in order to pursue it fulltime. However, it’s clear that the decision was ultimately worth it.
We were able to chat with her about her upcoming EP and recent release:
So our first question is, who were some of your favourite artists growing up? Did you have any music artists who inspired you and your music?
I listened to a lot of Layrn Hill, Alicia Keys, Destiny’s Child…Beyoncé is my ultimate favourite person, and Amy Winehouse is another singer I feel influenced me too.
What was your earliest memory of music?
My earliest was, probably the first time I sang in front of someone. It was at my best friend’s house when I was 10, or 11. It was Christmas and she had gotten a pop idol karaoke machine with CDs. We could record ourselves singing, and it was the first time I ever heard myself back, and it was the first time singing in front of everyone as well.
What did you think or feel when you heard yourself singing back?
I don’t know…That I sound really good?
Do you remember the moment you decided you wanted to a singer or when you wanted to go into music full time?
When I was around 17. I always wanted to do it, but I didn’t know how to get into it. My parents are really education focus and wanted me to go to Uni and get the best grades. So I was trying to do that for them, but I hated college – I didn’t want to be there, and I just always enjoyed music. I always knew that I didn’t want to work for anyone and be in an office, I just wanted to be my own voice, make my music, be happy. So I decided that at 17. I went to Uni, when I was 19, and moved to London. I studied for 2 years, but then I just hated it, and I thought, ‘What’s the point?’ I just wanted to be a singer, I wanted to be a musician, I wanted to do it fulltime. I dropped out of Uni, I never finished and now, 2 years later, I’m like putting out my own music and doing it full time and I’m happy so with it.
How was it transitioning into the music industry and how you were able to break into it…
When I moved to London, I reached out to an independent, so for the first two years of getting into music, I had found a manager. That’s when I first started getting into the studio and writing. I was just developing and finding my sound and what kind of music I wanted to make, and what kind of songs I wanted to write. When I switched managers, that’s when I decided to do music full time. I was working and studying, and trying to do music there just wasn’t enough time to focus on everything, and I picked it over studying. I just felt like the right the right decision.
How has your family reacted to you pursuing a career in music?
My mum was cool, she’s always been supportive and she’s always known that I wanted to do music. My dad didn’t agree with it when I decided to leave Uni. He would have preferred for me to finish, get my degree and then do what I wanted to do, but, I just felt like it was the right time. But he’s come around, and now he’s my biggest fan, and he plays my songs on repeat every day. He watches my videos on the TV, and anytime there’s a family BBQ he always has to play my songs! They’re both very supportive now.
Could you tell us a little bit about your upbringing in Sheffield, having come from the Caribbean at such a young age?
I moved to Scotland when I was 5, and then moved to Sheffield when I was 12, so I don’t really remember too much of Bermuda, from when I was younger, apart from the only big difference was the weather! I went from super hot weather to snow, and I had never seen snow before, but that was the only really big difference. Yeah, I was just really young when I moved over to the UK.
Do you get to go back to Bermuda to visit family? Have you gone back recently?
I went back for the first time in 6 years, a couple weeks ago, and that was really cool. I got to see my grandma, and all of my cousins, who I’ve not seen in so long, so that was good. It was really nice, I love the weather. Every year, Bermuda has a Carnival and a big parade, so everyone on the island just gets together and watch the parade, and it’s just a really good vibe, and it’s just a fun and positive atmosphere.
Could you tell us more about the creative process behind your song, ‘Bermuda.’
So I went into the studio with Joe Hertz, and he, we made the beat and I was just singing melodies in my head. The first thing I came up with was ‘la, la, la’ but I was going to originally put words to it to the simple melodies, but then I thought it was cute just to sing, ‘Love, Love, Love’ so I kept it and made it into a love song.
Would you say the song was more of a love song in general or a love song for Bermuda in general?
I think it’s more of a love song in general, but I’m singing about, going to a mysterious island where no one is, just you and your partner, just enjoying your time together. Bermuda is that for me, it’s a romantic place – with not a lot of people so it’s perfect for a romantic getaway, I think.
Would you say your Caribbean heritage has shaped your music ?
Growing up I listened to a lot of Motown and Soul, I think that’s definitely has had an influence. With melodies, I come up with, and just that they’re very soulful and old school sounding.
What can we expect from the EP that’s set to come out this winter?
My EP is very introspective. I wanted to make an honest EP, very relatable, some songs are more emotional, it’s just typical R&B or more alternative R&B. There’s going to be 7 tracks on it, which we’re still working on at the moment, and we’re going to put our visuals for a couple of the tracks a well, which is going to be fun. I’m feeling good about it, I can’t wait for it to be mixed and mastered, and everything – but it sounds really good so far, it sounds really good.
Out of all the songs you’ve done so far, which do you feel is the most special to you?
It’s probably, Playing for You, actually which I featured in, but well, I did write it. It was actually about me deciding to do music fulltime, and it’s about me taking a break from Uni and just focusing on myself and what I wanted to do, and not worrying about what anyone else wants me to do, and just listening to myself for once. I think that’s probably the most meaningful.
Do you have one from your EP that’s coming out soon?
Yes, It’s just about getting to a certain age and having expectations of where you’d be in the future, when you’re younger and having expectations of where you’d be when you’re older. It’s about getting older and realising things.
Finally, If you were to write a song about Sheffield, how do you think that would go?
I would probably change the genre – to something like indie, very guitar based – and I don’t know, talk about Yorkshire tea, I guess.