The globally-minded singer teams with half of Gatekeeper for a breezy track exploring the sexiness of plants
What happens when you cross-pollinate the free-wheeling experimental styles of a zouk and techno-influenced singer/producer and one half of the notoriously weird duo Gatekeeper? You get a song that’s for plants, by plants – or, more to the point, you get “Bee,” a sweetly direct and organic love song that falls somewhere between reggae, tropical pop and ambient composition. In an attempt to meet the brief they were given by Red Bull to come up with a song “for plants,” Lafawndah and Aaron David Ross found themselves getting back to basics, writing a tune that moves like a breeze through the jungle, synth riffs wafting through like palm fronds over a slow and sure-footed beat as Lafawndah’s hook “someone loves you, bee” sets the whole thing alight. It makes for a sultry follow-up to her recently-aired Teengirl Fantasy collab, "Lung". We had a quick chat with Lafawndah about how she grew into this new collaboration, and what’s so sexy about plants anyway.
What was it like collaborating with ADR?
Lafawndah: I got asked by Peter Coffin and Max Wolf from Red Bull to make a track for music for plants. We exchanged readings about plants and went deep but then we thought we didn't want to make music about plants. we wanted to make music for them and that the best way was to make an actual song and not be too conceptual/abstract/ambiant about it. What would be soothing for a plant? I guess that was the departure. ADR wanted to make a reggae song. I laughed at him and this is how we ended up doing BEE.
What inspired the lyrics of the track?
Lafawndah: The lyrics are written by Emily King, aka Garagembanda, who co-produced my EP and has a lot of knowledge about plants and animals. It's the first time I'm singing lyrics I didn't write, but our thoughts are so connected that she is the only one it makes so much sense with. Garagembanda says the lyrics are about buzz pollination and other wonders of the sexuality of the vegetable kingdom. She wanted to write a song for plants in which humans are not involved.
How do you see “BEE” as a development from your EP?
Lafawndah: BEE is definitely an island life track – my interest for body language is extended with this song. I think there is something irresistible to it, it's a soothing track, that tickles the body, it moves something inside. I think you can hear my palette of sounds in it, the major/minor binary melody, and my vocabulary is growing through contact with other producers.