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Rosie Lowe’s girl guide to growing up in the 21st century

The fearless London singer spills her soul and reveals the life mantras she swears by

We’ve been obsessed with South London musician and Dazed 100 graduate Rosie Lowe ever since Right Thing, her subtle yet sparkling debut EP. Since then, Lowe’s sweetly skewed electro-pop has shape-shifted into different forms, from the metallic, glistening world of “Who’s that Girl?” to pristine pop gem “Woman”, each track revealing an inch more about the inner workings of her mind.

It’s a peel-back-and-reveal that will culminate in Lowe’s upcoming debut album Control, a collection of soul-baring creations about womanhood, the brutalities of love, and trying to navigate modern adulthood. “I have analysed every single inch of my skin, and comparisons I can’t seem to break in my daily routine,” she sings in “Woman” her deep, lilting vocals gliding over minimal, spidery production. “I found myself obsessive with imperfections that only I can see.” To mark an album that transforms insecurities into art, we spoke to Lowe about the life lessons she swears by, and what she’d pass on to others.

FORGET ABOUT VISUAL PERFECTION

“There’s so much pressure on women. There’s pressure on men as well, but as a woman I can talk about it first hand. I think a lot of this pressure comes visually and the older I get, the more I realise how dangerous that can be. How do you navigate that? I think it’s down to schooling and education. I think that there really needs to be more education on what’s actually behind these perfect photos of models. I can’t imagine how hard social media is for young women and men, which is all about your status and what you look like and how you compare. I have to stop myself looking at Instagram every morning and I’m very strict on myself.”

FORGET ABOUT FAKE FRIENDS

“I was really ill and in hospital for quite a while actually, and my song “Who’s That Girl” represents these times of hardship and how the ones who stay are always the ones that you’d never have expected to stay. I just think that things happen for a really good reason and you learn who’s really loyal and who’s going to have your back. You’ve only got so much time in the day, so who do you give yourself to? I don’t think that you can really have a thousand friends, but you have a few really good friends that you commit too. It’s like having a relationship some feel more intense. I believe in having friends that are very close to me.”

GET TO KNOW YOURSELF PROPERLY

“I think the secret to happiness is knowing yourself – I just don’t think you can be happy if you’re not happy in yourself. I had a really tough time the year before last – I think I was depressed, I’m still not quite sure. My world kind of fell apart and all I knew and it was all tied into being really ill. I started therapy, and I started to find myself and it ended up being the most important time of my life. I had to go from the ground up, and now I know I’ll definitely be unhappy again but I might be able to understand it a little bit more. I don’t have to rely on anyone to make me happy anymore – it’s just really important to get to know yourself, even though it’s really scary, and a lot of that stuff can be pretty unpleasant unfortunately…without sounding too heavy.”

BE HONEST WITH YOUR MATES

“I’m pretty honest with my friends and I really think that transparency and honesty is really important. I think of relationships that I’ve been in that weren’t making me happy and I think that if friends had said to me at the time I might have done something sooner. My best friend is Nicole and she knew that I didn’t like her boyfriend – in the end, I wouldn’t get off the phone until she ditched him basically and I was like ‘I’m coming to get you.” Looking back, she’s like “oh god what was I doing?” but at the time people can’t see and you’ve got to let them do their own things.”

BE KIND TO YOURSELF AND STAY CREATIVE

“If I could give advice to my 16-year-old self, I’d probably tell myself to have more compassion for myself – spend less time worrying about others and be bit kinder to myself. I’d also say practice more music because it’s a great age to start and it goes in easier at a younger age, but I was a lot more interested in partying and doing all of that stuff at a time when I wish I just practiced more. It’s important to party, but I wish I’d practiced more when I didn’t have to make money.”

Rosie Lowe’s debut album Control is out 19th February – buy it here.