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Introducing: Chappell Roan on her song 'Casual' + upcoming music.

Introducing: Chappell Roan on her song 'Casual' + upcoming music.

Los Angeles-based popstar Chappell Roan is signing her name in neon glitter on the pop world with her latest track, 'Casual', following the downfall of a "casual" relationship. Embellished with memorable lyrics like, "I fucked you in the bathroom when we went to dinner / Your parents at the table, you wonder why I'm bitter," and "I've heard so many rumours / That I'm just a girl that you bang on your couch," scattered throughout the track.

After the release of her song 'Pink Pony Club' back in 2020, it has all been onward and upwards for Roan - from opening for Olivia Rodrigo, to releasing her debut full-length album very soon. Songs created to be screamed at the top of your lungs, Roan pairs all her tracks with a just as fun visual, including her video for 'Naked In Manhattan', about which she shares: "I packed a giant suitcase of thrifted costumes and said, 'Fuck it, we’ll just figure it out when we get there.' That shoot was the birth of the new era... It was pure magic and it was the biggest risk I took last year for my project financially."

Next up for her is a new single 'Kaleidoscope' which she worked on with Dan Nigro - she even gave us a sneak peek at some of the lyrics: "Love is a Kaleidoscope. How it works, I’ll never know. Even all the change, it’s somehow all the same. Turn it to the left and right. Colours shining in your eye. Even upside down, it’s beautiful somehow."

P.S. Chappell Roan has also guest-curated two pages in our 'Forever' zine - which you can purchase here

We talked to Roan about the versions of people we have in our heads, doing the work, and her guinea pig Gogo...

COUP DE MAIN: 'Casual' follows really specific memories from a relationship, like talking down their sister and being invited to their mum's house in Long Beach - when you are writing a song about memories, do you find that they play through your mind cinematically or more in snapshots and flashes of moments? 
CHAPPELL ROAN: I like narrative songwriting, so it usually plays out like a film in my head. 

CDM: In 'Casual' you sing, "Dream of us in a year / Maybe we'd have an apartment / And you'd show me off to your friends at the pier" - what is it about the idea of a better future that makes us stick out a toxic relationship? 
CHAPPELL: I make up versions of the people I have feelings for. It’s very damaging because they aren’t real, but the hope of them becoming what I want them to be, is what keeps me clinging to them. It’s very toxic. It’s unrealistic. Fantasising is my downfall, but it brings out the best songs in me I guess.

CDM: The video for 'Naked In Manhattan' is so fun and energetic - what was the process like filming this video? 
CHAPPELL: My friend Ryan Clemens and I went to New York with no plan really. I packed a giant suitcase of thrifted costumes and said, 'Fuck it, we’ll just figure it out when we get there.' That shoot was the birth of the new era. It was hard to shoot 12-14 hours a day, dragging a suitcase of costumes around, changing in a tiny pop-up tent in Central Park, freezing cold in the middle of December. It was pure magic and it was the biggest risk I took last year for my project financially. 

CDM: If you had to assign a song of yours to your guinea pig Gogo that represents them - what would that song be? 
CHAPPELL: Honestly, 'Femininomenon' because she’s a femininomnenon. I really love her and taking care of her helps me stay grounded by caring for something else. She is considered a senior pig and is 6 1/2 years old. I’m lucky to have spent this much time with her.

CDM: I'm a firm believer that 'Pink Pony Club' is one of the most fun songs ever created - what is it like performing that song in a room full of people? 
CHAPPELL: Truly magical. I performed it for the first time ever this year. If you think about it, it was released right at the beginning of the pandemic and there was not an opportunity to party. It’s a party song. I just love seeing how into it everyone gets, it makes my project feel special. 

CDM: What does a perfect day look like to you? 
CHAPPELL: Morning hike with friends, then a yummy brunch. Afternoon thrifting with friends and a cute café lunch. Watch a movie and craft until a dinner. Bake cookies then have a game night. I love games. 

CDM: "Within those limitations can come magic," you've once said about being an unsigned artist - is there something you wish people knew about both the struggles and successes of being an unsigned artist?
CHAPPELL: You’re just not going to be able to do a lot of things you want to. I am lucky because I have very talented friends who all live in LA and do me huge favours, like working for free. Everyone busts their ass for this project. Everyone. I am lucky to live in a city that’s a hub for music. I’m lucky to have the knowledge of how to navigate my project. A lot of this is about privilege. If your parents pay for your lifestyle in LA or NYC, it automatically becomes a lot easier to be an indie artist. I have worked several jobs over the years to barely stay afloat. I simply could not bear giving up on this. You have to do the work. No one is going to work harder than the artist. No one is going to push you to keep this going, regardless of being signed. I believe in this, that’s what’s fuelled me this year.  

CDM: Do you have a lyric that you've written that you feel most proud of?
CHAPPELL: This is the next song that’s coming out called 'Kaleidoscope', but my fave lyric is: “Love is a Kaleidoscope. How it works, I’ll never know. Even all the change, it’s somehow all the same. Turn it to the left and right. Colours shining in your eye. Even upside down, it’s beautiful somehow.”

CDM: You opened for Olivia Rodrigo on her 'Sour' tour! What was that experience like?
CHAPPELL: Opening for Olivia automatically put me in a new territory. It proved a lot for my project being independent. It was so gratifying, and to be honest, not as hard as I thought. I thought I would feel like I would arrive in this new era of myself performing in front of 10,000 people, but it didn’t feel that way at all. It all felt normal and natural. That’s when I knew I’ve was ready to do a show like that. I feel ready to do massive rooms right now. I feel confident in my performance and the music carries it all. I love Olivia and am so grateful for that opportunity. 

CDM: You've talked about giving your inner child justice through your clothing and style - if you could tell your child-self something, what would it be?  
CHAPPELL: You are more than talented. You are smart and gentle and so much more. 

CDM: What can you tell us about upcoming music? 
CHAPPELL: I’m finishing up an album right now with Dan Nigro. He’s my main co-writer/producer. Fingers crossed it comes out in the summer. 'Kaleidoscope' is hopefully coming out in late January / early February.

'Casual' is out now - listen below:

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