Get To Know: SKYLAR
After blowing up on TikTok earlier this year with a song she hoped no one she knew would see, we're getting to know SKYLAR...
Earlier this year on a whim, SKYLAR wrote a song and 10 minutes later uploaded it to TikTok, little realising just hours later it would have blown up on the platform.
'Teenage Culture' was inspired by Boris Johnson's announcement that students would be returning to school in March and captures all the mixed emotions felt back then by so many millions of people.
11 million views on TikTok later, she released a studio version with Polydor Records, aided by producer Joe Rubel (Ed Sheeran, Dodie, Maisie Peters) and now it's time we got to know her a bit better...
1. For those who don’t know about you and your music, tell us a little bit about who you are and where you’re from…
Hi, I’m Skylar, I’m 17 and I live in sunny, exotic, Ibiza weather London haha. It’s so weird being asked to talk about myself cuz usually I can talk for England but when it comes to saying “quirky facts” about indeed MYSELF, I really never have anything to say and seem to make me sound rather boring haha. But um I guess in terms of my music, if I wasn’t actually doing MUSIC, my dream job would be to work in the MI5 as a behavioural analyst AKA a profiler. I literally am obsessed with everything to do with crime and would happily sit down and analyse crazy crime cases for hours haha.
2. Who/what inspired you to start a career in music?
As a kid and still now I’d say I’m very much an ambivert. Performing always brought out my extroverted side whereas writing brought out the introvert in me. I liked to kind of observe and write down every little thing I saw and hence started writing poetry which I refused to show anyone haha. That then led to stringing the words with melodies and here we are.
I guess like most people I write what I see but instead of transferring my direct feelings from pen to paper, my songs tend to be my subconscious thoughts. After listening over to a song I’ve written, only then am I able to resonate with my own emotions without the rose-tinted glass which is kind of scary but therapeutic at the same time. I feel like I just answered that question like a politician, forgetting to answer the main point, what inspired me? Cliche answer but I’d say poetry hehe.
3. Who are your biggest musical influences?
For starters, I am the biggest Freddie Mercury fan, I grew up listening to a lot of 70s rock, so The Eagles, The Police, I absolutely adore the 80s, esp anything to do with Disco/Funk, Earth Wind and Fire type stuff. If I hear a sax, I’m sold! I love Amy Winehouse, I mean with a sound so raw it’s hard not to love her. In terms of influencing my music, right now it’s early days but something I’m really keen on is fusion as I practically love every style of music and would love to incorporate that aspect into what I create for sure !!
4. Tell us about the writing and recording process of your new release…
Ah yes 'Teenage Culture' ! Well to put it simply, around March time, Boris announced we were going back to school, I wrote a song, and the rest is history HAHA. I posted it on TikTok almost hoping no one I knew would see it, to then getting a text from my friend saying “SKY YOU’VE BLOWN UP ON TIKTOK!” Who knew that Boris’s announcement would result in all this huh. CRAZY !!
5. What has been your biggest career highlight so far?
I’d say the music video ! It was just such a cool experience for me, getting to meet as well as work with such amazing people with incredible versatility in the talent aspect. I got to meet and work with a bunch of kids my age which was also really fun and the whole day shooting on set was so enjoyable I can’t wait to do it again :)
6. Who would you be your dream collaboration and why?
So, without trying to put a morbid spin on it, my biggest idol is no longer present :( however if he was still with us today, Mr Freddie Mercury is definitely someone I would’ve liked to at least spend the day with, not even to make music but just to see what is inside that complex, prodigy of a mind of his. But in terms of collaboration, one of my favourite artists at the minute is a guy called Lausse the Cat, and anyone who knows me knows how obsessed I am with him but he’s more of an underground artist which adds to the whole mystery of his persona as no one really knows too much about him, so yep he’s pretty cool !
7. Have you met anyone and been totally starstruck?
Unfortunately, not yet :( But the closest I’ve ever been to starstruck was when my music teacher in secondary school told me he played with Amy Winehouse. Honestly, starstruck wasn’t even the word to describe how I was feeling in that moment HAHA.
8. If you could only listen to one song on repeat for the rest of time what would it be and why?
This is gonna sound like a really weird answer but probably John Cages 4′33″ instrumental piece of pure silence cuz then I could simply make my own stuff up every time I’d get bored without having to listen to the same song on repeat. On second thought, that would mean with all that silence I’d basically get lost in my own thoughts which is a scary thought in itself as it would only allow me to delve deep in one of my many existential crises haha oh well.
9. What’s on your playlists that people wouldn’t expect?
You see, I listen to pretty much everything and it genuinely depends on my mood, but I’d say I am secretly a bit of a sucker for classical music so indeed I do have the occasional classical symphony hidden away there plus a lot of crime-based podcasts of course. Also, I try and claim to stay away from drill music as my brother practically booms it through the speakers around our house, but I have to admit, it’s actually pretty good so maybe you might catch me secretly bopping to drill miming the words to my poor reflection in the mirror HAHA but let’s just keep that between us shall we …
10. What can we expect from your live shows?
Now that’s a good question ! I’d say a lot of spontaneity as cliche as it sounds, as well as audience engagement. I love people getting involved, I think that genuinely makes a good show but I’d always wanna keep people entertained with plenty of surprises, so you’d never really know what to expect hehe.
11. Have you got any fun livestreams/online events planned for this year? / When can we see you live?
I mean as soon as Corona kindly departs then I WOULD HOPE SO so unfortunately in terms of live shows, the ball is all in Miss Rona’s court, No pressure !