16th Annual Artist Survey: Claire George | Under the Radar - Music Magazine
Monday, November 11th, 2019  

16th Annual Artist Survey: Claire George

George on Climate Change, Childhood Vacation and Birthday Party Memories, and The Good Place

Mar 28, 2019 Web Exclusive
Bookmark and Share


For Under the Radar's 16th Annual Artist Survey we emailed some of our favorite artists a few questions relating to the last year, plus some fun personal questions. We asked them about their favorite albums of the year and their thoughts on various notable 2018 news stories involving either the music industry or world events, as well as some quirkier personal questions. Here are some answers from Claire George. The electro-pop artist released her debut EP, Bodies of Water, last year via Cascine.

For our annual Artist Survey we emailed the same set of questions to musicians about the midterm elections, the Supreme Court confirmation hearings of Brett Kavanaugh, Kanye West visiting the White House, the #MeToo movement a year later, mental health conditions in the music industry, whether or not they have Flossed, childhood birthday parties and vacations, which Muppets character they are most like, whether or not they are going to The Good Place after death, and much more.

Top 10 Albums of 2018            

1. Let's Eat Grandma: I'm All Ears
2. Empress Of: Us
3. Kacey Musgraves: Golden Hour
4. Janelle Monáe: Dirty Computer
5. Cardi B: Invasion of Privacy
6. Against All Logic: 2012 - 2017
7. Pusha T: Daytona
8. Rosalía: El Mal Querer
9. Soccer Mommy: Clean
10. J Balvin: Vibras

What was the highlight of 2018 for either you personally or for the band? What was the low point? 

About two hours before my manager and I were about to submit masters to the vinyl pressing plant in order to press vinyl for my record release party, Cascine reached out about putting out my debut EP, Bodies of Water. I had spent about two years alone teaching myself to produce in Ableton and just the feat of finishing the EP with the help of a few friends felt incredible, but being approached by a team who believed in the work when I was ready to self-release was by far the highlight of my year.

What are your thoughts on how the U.S. midterm elections have played out? What do you think the results mean for the Democrats' chances of taking back the White House in 2020?

I'm very pleased that the Democrats took back the House in the midterms. Now, there is an opportunity for renewed checks and balances. My hope is that there will now be further investigation into Trump's finances, Russian interference in the election, and the Kavanaugh case. It also brings me peace to know that Democrats can now block the Republican legislative agenda. I'm hoping these results will prevent Trump from pushing his agenda along thereby weakening his campaign in 2020.

Despite compelling testimony from Christine Blasey Ford and sexual assault allegations from other women, Brett Kavanaugh was sworn in a Supreme Court Justice and many Republican women didn't believe Ford's story. What does this tell you about the general state of the #MeToo movement in 2018? 

For me, so much of this goes back to the stories we are being told by the media we choose to consume. When Trump was elected, many liberals, including myself, were in a state of shock. We learned about the "echo chambers" we have all fallen into in our digital lives, reading posts on social media from our friends and peers we didn't realize that everyone has sort of been living in a silo surrounded by people who think the same way as we do. Thanks to algorithms, we have been fed the news we want to hear, and I think the same thing can be said for people with more conservative views. It is, therefore, not that surprising to me that people who listen to stories told from different media outlets with different agendas and rhetoric might think differently. I am appalled by the fact that some women don't believe Dr. Ford, but I am not surprised. I think the #MeToo movement is still incredibly strong and important in 2018 as it has begun to de-stigmatize speaking out against predators. 

A year after the #MeToo movement, do you feel things have gotten better or worse in terms of issues of sexual harassment, sexual assault, and misogyny in the music industry?

I certainly think things have gotten better, but there's obviously more work to be done. What I can say is that I think women feel more empowered to stand up for themselves and are being heard more than they were a few years ago. When I look at my list of top albums I see that they are mostly albums by women, and to me that really means something. That means that people are listening, that women are being supported by the industry-they are booked on more festival lineups, put onto more Spotify playlists, written about more in music blogs. There has been a push for this for a long time now, for as long as I've been making music, and I think we are seeing results.

Be honest, did you Floss in 2018? (Meaning the dance craze, not the dental care.)

I can't say I did.

Which Muppets character are you most like and why?

Animal because I'm a creature and a Muppet and we move the same. 

Are you less of a fan of Kanye West now that he's visited the White House and has in other ways supported President Trump?

Yes.

Scott Hutchison of Frightened Rabbit tragically took his own life this year. What should be done to improve mental health conditions for musicians?

This is something I feel very passionate about. Mental health is an extremely important issue to me, and I think the more we talk about it the better. Depression is very insidious and makes people believe they are alone, but I think if we are able to create music communities that foster discussion around mental health we are doing something huge for musicians. I think there should be more resources for musicians to tap into. The nature of being a musician is very difficult, and oftentimes people don't have the money to pay for therapy or rehabilitation. I think it would be really beautiful to create a fund or organization that provides these kinds of support for musicians.

In 2018 there were more dire predictions about climate change and we witnessed some of its likely effects firsthand with various deadly storms and forest fires. What should touring musicians be doing to better offset their carbon footprint? How bad do you think it needs to get for governments and corporations to take stronger actions to fight climate change?

It all begins with being mindful about what is necessary. If you have to blast confetti, can you find some that's biodegradable? Every little action can make a difference in your carbon footprint. Obviously, eating vegan or vegetarian helps. Bringing a reusable water bottle with you everywhere rather than using the plastic water bottles provided backstage at shows, selling merch made locally, sharing a van with the band you're touring with, etc. All of this helps. It has to start with the government who can then find ways to incentivize corporations, but until the government is willing to take action I fear we are in big trouble. I don't know what it will take, but I think it could get very ugly (and it already has) before the U.S. takes things more seriously.

Are you ready for artificial intelligence and a more automated future? Some predict that it may come sooner than we think and will lead to massive job losses.

Every large technological change has come with this fear of massive job losses. I think as a human race we will always find ways to find purpose and jobs. I am, however, concerned about offloading too much of our independent thought onto machines, as we have already done so much offloading just with the use of the iPhone. We seem pretty helpless when left to our own "devices."

What's your favorite birthday party memory from childhood?

My mom and I had an animal themed crafts party, which was the best. We bought all these fun animal print fabrics from the fabric store and at the party we all made slippers and hats. I love a good themed party.

What was your favorite family vacation as a kid? What was your least favorite?

My favorite family vacation as a kid was going to Puerto Vallarta where my grandmother spent the winters painting in an artist community. I remember going to visit her studio in the city near the river and was so inspired by the pottery and paintings there. The colors were unlike any I had seen before. My least favorite was when we drove to Magnetic Hill in Canada which they said was this magic hill that had a magnetic pull but really it was just a hill and they asked us to put the car in neutral and we just rolled backwards in our car. We had driven four hours to get there. The car was very grumpy.

What's been your most surreal experience in the music industry?

Having my music played on KEXP in Seattle. I listened to this station growing up and have always admired the station's collective curatorial ability. When I found out they were playing some of my songs I felt completely outside of my body like I was floating.

When you die, do you think you're going to the Good Place or the Bad Place?

*SPOILER ALERT* I hope I'm going to the Good Place, which actually turns out to be the Bad Place so that I can hang out with Ted Danson. 

www.claire-george.com

Support Under the Radar on Patreon.



Comments

Submit your comment

Name Required

Email Required, will not be published

URL

Remember my personal information
Notify me of follow-up comments?

Please enter the word you see in the image below:

Monica Sanmartin
April 23rd 2019
2:16pm

Awesome report. Actually we, mass people have a fantasy to the celebrity. We eagerly wait to know the unknown fact of our favorite celebrity. Thank you for bringing up here this excellent interview with Claire George. Actually, I am also involved with the entertainment world as a freelance journalist. And it is worth mentioning that I am also a freelance content writer of https://australianwritings.com.au/. By the way, I like most to write about the entertainment industry. And for may be that I can feel the likings of my readers!

harryjames
May 18th 2019
10:35pm

one of the best informative article thank you…:)
https://www.driversin.com