Georgia is the DIY musician writing dance anthems immersed in club culture
BY SOPHIE GRIFFITHS, IMAGE BY HOLLIE FERNANDO
Georgia’s second album Seeking Thrills came out just this year, but her euphoric sounds are making waves on dance floors everywhere.
Inspired by the Chicago house music scene, Georgia’s music is the perfect mixture of electronic and pop elements, making everything she does completely catchy and unapologetically immersed in club culture.
Soaked in synths and dripping in dance beats, Seeking Thrills has been in our heads and on our playlists for months. We couldn’t wait to chat to the wild-haired electronic extraordinaire all about her big break onto the dance music scene.
DIVA: Your first album was in 2015. What do you think has changed for you since then?
GEORGIA: I’ve developed a whole bunch. When that first record came out I was a different person. It was a mad time. I was going through a lot personally. My mum and dad were splitting up and I remember feeling quite out of control. I turned to drinking a lot and just being quite self-destructive. I think the music on the first record was very reflective of that state. As soon as that first record came out and I got myself healthy and sane again, I immediately started on the process for Seeking Thrills and I knew what needed to be done to take the music to the next level. A lot has happened to me between the two records, but the main thing was that I became a singer.
Where did the process for starting Seeking Thrills begin?
Just after that first album in 2016. I work in the studio every day so the making of Seeking Thrills started with me demo-ing songs in my studio. I researched this record as if I was approaching a university paper because I knew that the songwriting needed to improve. I looked at my favourite songwriters for inspiration. I looked at Kate Bush, Neil Young, Joni Mitchell, Prince, Depeche Mode. Classic amazing pop, but slightly on the edge artists. Then I went down the rabbit hole of Chicago House and Detroit Techno and that gave me the production direction. I was searching and listening to music for months before I even actually wrote any songs.
Was music what you always wanted to pursue?
100%. I didn’t really want to do anything else apart from this. It definitely was in my blood. I’ve been exposed to live music from a very, very early age, seeing my dad, seeing people rave, seeing the dance floor. Seeing the whole music world started a fire in me that I knew I was going to pursue.
My father was in a band called Leftfield and they were the 90s pioneers of dance music. I was exposed to a lot of different music through that. My mum is also a huge music lover. She grew up in Bournemouth and she remembers seeing The Beatles and Jimi Hendrix and Led Zeppelin. There’s always been music played, wherever we lived, and she was very encouraging of me exploring different types of music.
Touring must be a really intense time – is it difficult to take care of yourself when you’re on the road?
The show is very high intensity so I have to take good care of myself physically and mentally. I’m on a plant-based and gluten-free diet. I am very careful about what I put in my body. I do a lot of yoga and stretching and I just generally don’t drink as much anymore. I’m very conscious of the fact that I had a period in my life where I was very self-destructive and I don’t want to go back to that period again. I’m quite obsessive when it comes to taking care of myself now. I always have to be a bit hedonistic at times and go out there and seek my thrills, but I don’t generally when I’m on the road, because the schedules are so demanding I wouldn’t physically be able to do it.
What’s the best part of performing live?
I think my favourite thing about performing live is feeding off the audience’s energy. I think I’m lucky now that the Georgia fans that are emerging and the core fan base are up for having a good time. That’s the most enjoyable thing, just seeing the audience’s reactions in the audience and just rolling with the energy. I live off that and I feed off that.
What is your creative process like for songwriting big dance tunes and knowing if they’ll work on the dance floor?
I think It’s just off instinct and it’s off your experience. I’ve been on many dance floors now and seen people’s reactions to certain ways of being on the dance floor. It comes from a love of it as well. It comes from the people. I’ve met a lot of incredible people on the dance floor over the years and had amazing moments. I’ve seen communities, like the LGBTQI community, and people from all over the world just being able to be themselves on the dance floor. That’s the most powerful message on the dance floor and that’s what I tried to convey with Seeking Thrills.
Would you say the dance music scene is an inclusive one?
If it’s a good club, yeah! It’s all about inclusivity. Fuck anyone else who doesn’t believe in that. The dance movement has always been about communities like the LGBTQI community. It was a place for them to feel safe, that’s how dance music started. In Chicago, the clubs were gay clubs for black people and they were really important places where people felt safe and people felt like they had somewhere to go to release themselves in a way that they couldn’t in every day life.
Without people and club promoters being brave in the 80s and the late 70s, we might not have inclusive spaces. Clubs in New York came before those in Chicago and they were completely inclusive places for everyone. It was the LGBTQI communities haven, their place where they were able to feel safe to express themselves. I think everyone owes a lot to those people who opened up those clubs and promoted those nights because without that we might still be in a society where inclusivity is still underground.
Do you have a big queer fanbase?
I’ve got a massive queer following – they are the fans you want! I was in Kyiv recently, which was a strange place to go. We had a lot of the LGBTQI community come. In my meet-and-greet I spoke to these boys and it was really emotional. They said that things were changing, but they were still really bad there and About Work The Dancefloor has been an anthem that they’re grateful for. I was in tears, because I know that in those communities it’s still really scary, especially for young people, because there is still such a terrible, homophobic and hostile attitude towards them. You forget that, because although society isn’t perfect, we certainly live in better times than we did previously but there are still places in the world that are playing catch up. I’m happy that I was giving them some hope.
What message do you want people to take away from your music?
I think it’s music to feel that you can escape to and for a moment, you can stick the album on whatever you’re doing, the situation you’re in, wherever you are, and you can feel empowered.
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