Updated: Apr 4, 2022
Sophia Scott's latest offerings 'Birthday' and 'Pity Party' are dreamy, introspective and extremely relatable. Whirling around the idea of not being able to move on from a past love, Scott's lyricism flourishes in relatability and pertinence. The tracks show a new direction from her 'tongue-in-cheek' debut single 'We Were Almost', which Scott says is testament to her versatile songwriting.
We spoke to Sophia Scott about exploring new soundscapes, versatility as an artist, relatibility in music and how damn weird birthdays can really be.
Now you’ve just released two beautiful double singles ‘Birthday’ and ‘Pity Party’ which sees you really strip back your sound, proving that you’re an exceptionally versatile artist. What inspired you to explore a different soundscape to your debut?
Having only had one song out prior to the release of ‘Pity Party’ and ‘Birthday’, I knew it was really the only reference people had when trying to interpret my ‘sound’. My debut single, ‘We Were Almost’, was more sassy and quite ‘tongue-in-cheek’, I liked that it was fun. Although thematically it covers a similar concept to these songs, musically it was conveyed in a completely different way. I think the contrast between the two releases are also reflective of my writing at the moment, which is quite versatile. When people ask me what genre my music is I really struggle to define it, I would much rather pull up my Spotify and let them decide for themselves. Being a new artist, I want to show as much versality with every release as I can, I feel like it’s only then that my audience will be able to gauge an idea of what my soundscape is.
‘Birthday’ and ‘Pity Party’ whirl around the idea of not being able to move on from a past love, something almost everyone can relate to, can you talk to us a bit about that. How did the tracks come about and what do they mean to you?
I think the point you make about almost everyone being able to relate to the themes in both songs is one of the reasons I chose to record and release these two in particular. I really love the idea of writing lyrics that feel so pertinent to the listener’s own experiences that they feel as though the song was written for them. As a consumer of music even, relatability is one of the aspects I value most, it makes you feel understood.
Both songs are personal to me. Don’t get me wrong, I actually love birthdays but typically you hear the word ‘birthday’ and attach positive connotations to it, I liked the idea of doing the opposite. I think the song tells a tale experienced by most but told by few. Birthdays can be weird because usually when you have a bad day, you can just pawn it off as a bad day. When it’s your birthday, sometimes there’s this pressure to uphold a façade that no matter what happens, you’re having the greatest time. I think it can be quite an isolating feeling.
‘Pity Party’ may have a more niche audience, but I think for those who do relate, it feels very specific. Heartbreak is hard in general, and my generation has this added element which allows us to take comparison to the ninth degree, social media. There’s this juxtaposition between knowing the self-sabotage you are imposing but being so consumed by it that you impose it upon yourself anyway. I wanted to show how we can really think we know everything about someone just based off the curated highlight reel they choose to show us, which we can’t.
What do you want listeners to take away from them?
That these experiences are universal, if you can relate, I hope you feel a little less alone.
Your lyricism is a huge stand-out in these songs, does that part of your craft come easily? Is there a sort of therapy in writing songs?
Thank you, lyrics are my favourite aspect of songwriting and although they can come with ease, it’s not without thought and effort. I have always found writing cathartic. When I was a child, I discovered my love of it through narrative writing at school. The feedback I received gave me a confidence that I had potential to become a good writer. I then transferred that passion into songwriting.
I do find it a sort of therapy. My thoughts make so much more sense to me when I arrange them into writing and music.
My interpretation of certain experiences can sometimes be scattered and disordered - somewhat overwhelming. Writing songs gives my thoughts and feelings a sense of order and clarity. I feel like once I put my thoughts and experiences into a song, it’s a time capsule of how I was feeling at that moment in time and makes it much easier for me to then move on. It’s a way of creating closure for yourself when you have none.
You have previously mentioned that you’ve been writing music since you were very young, what does your ideal environment look like when you’re getting creative?
Honestly, almost all my songs have been written on my bedroom floor. I always have a guitar or piano when I’m writing and if it’s within my control, I like to have no place to rush off to. Also, the voice memos app is always open when I write so that if I sing a lyric or melody I like, but instantly forget, I can just revert to the recording.
What were some of your key influences when writing ‘Birthday’ and ‘Pity Party’?
I had been listening to more sombre music at the time. I had just discovered Gracie Abrams and Bleachers’ ‘Take the Sadness Out of Saturday Night’ record had just come out - I barely listened to another album for about six months straight. Although I didn’t have specific key influences for either song, I find I always am inspired in some way or another by whoever I can’t turn off at the time.
Can you run us through your writing and recording process?
I write all of my songs by myself but love collaborating with other artists when it comes to arranging them.
You hear people talk about ‘shower thoughts’ but I usually have those epiphanies when I’m driving. I was stuck in traffic when the line, ‘now I only hear from you on my Birthday’, popped into my head. Once I was home the rest of the song came together really quickly, I think because I found the experience I was writing about so visceral.
It’s funny actually, I was watching ‘Puberty Blues’ for the first-time last year when I thought of the line “she lives at the beach, and she parties each weekend”. It’s simple but I liked that it gave me leverage to write a ‘narrative’ like song. Conceptually it diverged from the show and became intertwined with personal experience, but that’s where the initial spark of inspiration came from.
My incredible band then helped me arrange both of these songs for our live set and so when we got into the studio, we took those ideas and got the chance to elevate them. Every time I get into the studio, I learn SO much. I honestly love the experience; the days can be draining but walking in with a song you wrote on your bedroom floor and walking out with a fully produced song is unparalleled.
Lastly, what can we expect from you moving into 2022!? Do you have any upcoming shows fans can see you at or maybe some more releases?
Yes!! I am already working on my next project and will be back in the studio at the end of the month. I actually have a gig coming up this weekend, March 19th, before we head to Byron on April 2nd. I announce all upcoming gigs and releases primarily on my Instagram, so if people are interested in keeping up, I’d send them in that direction.
Check out Sophia Scott's latest tracks 'Birthday' and 'Pity Party' now!