Courtney Cooper is the Brooklyn based indie-pop singer-songwriter who is destined to be the name on everyone’s lips and the artist included on everyone’s playlist.
Having attended the prestigious Berklee College of Music at 17, Courtney discovered her passion for recording and made the move to New York to pursue music as a full-time career.
Courtney released her first full length album, The Light, in 2015 and since then she has been working hard to hone her craft, creating a new body of work even more personal than the last. Her new album Waves will be released later this year, and on Friday (May 18) Courtney released the first single from it, ‘Cosmos’.
We had the chance to ask Courtney all about ‘Cosmos’, her forthcoming album, her love for yoga and much more.
Congratulations on the release of your new single ‘Cosmos’! What’s the response to the song been like so far?
Thank you! So far, it’s been great! Everyone is super supportive and excited to see new music on the way!
Can you tell us about the inspiration behind the song?
The first time I heard the instrumental, I was about halfway done writing my album and I immediately felt such a connection to the track. It has such an amazing vibe and build, it really made it easy to write to. I pulled from the ground work Jacoo had already put into it and just embellished what was already there.
How long did the songwriting/production process take?
I sat down and wrote the melody and lyrics in literally 10 minutes. It came to me out of thin air, which never really happens for me. Most of my songs are a long process I keep working on and going back to.
What’s your favorite lyric from ‘Cosmos’?
“Daylight–all the stars dripped in gold light the sky above, drifting through the Cosmos”
The track is a collaboration with Jacoo – what was he like to work with?
Jacoo is such a talent! He’s only 22 and has such an amazing ear and talent as a producer. His music is so calming and tells such an amazing story. Our collab was virtual since he is in Norway, but he is so great—really enjoyed the collab…hint hint…we’ve been chatting about another piece together!
Are there any plans to release a music video for ‘Cosmos’? If so, what can we expect from it?
Not as of now…I’ve been shooting visuals for a few other songs, but Cosmos is not one of them.
‘Cosmos’ is taken from your forthcoming album, Waves. What inspired the album and how would you describe it to our readers?
I’ve always been deeply drawn to the ocean. There is something so magical about how endless the ocean truly is…it’s so mysterious, but calming and soothing at the same time. Waves is basically my love song and tribute to the ocean and its beauty. The title is also a bit of a play on words. The vibrations of sound in the air that are perceived as music are also called sound waves. #MusicNerd
I would describe the album as soul-infused indie pop. Super vibey slow jams.
We’ve had a sneaky listen and we love it, especially ‘Damn’ and ‘Middle of the Night’. Do you have a favorite track from the album?
Haha, yay!! That’s so great to hear! Damn is also one of my favorites as well as Paradise.
Waves will be the follow up album to The Light. How would you say your sound has evolved since your debut album?
Soooooooo much. It’s actually a bit crazy how much I’ve grown since The Light…not only as an artist, but as a person. When I was writing The Light, I was literally just finding myself…finding my own “light” and growing into myself. I was still dealing with some darkness and insecurities.
Writing WAVES has been so amazing. I feel like I’ve finally found my real voice as an artist as opposed to catering to what industry people tell me I should look or sound like. WAVES is such a reflection of me finding internal peace with myself and as an artist. Waves is a bit more soulful, chill, R&B vibes where I’ve been more pop in the past.
Your first album was partly crowdfunded on Kickstarter – how did you find the experience?
Kickstarter was great! I did put a lot of my own money into The Light as well, but crowd funding was a great way to interact with listeners as well as a huge support to fill in the gap for necessary costs that I needed a little extra help with.
You’re based in Brooklyn – how has the area influenced you musically?
Prior to living in Brooklyn, I was living in LA for three years. I currently live on the waterfront in Williamsburg and wrote Waves over what seemed like the longest winter ever after moving back to NY!
I wrote WAVES at my apartment where my view overlooks the East River (I have a little home studio set up). As winter crawled by, I sat and looked out the window staring at the water as it snowed, daydreaming about California’s beautiful coastline and endless sunshine. Those daydreams are essentially what you hear in each of the songs on the album.
Who are some of your favorite musical inspirations?
Some of my all time favorites and biggest inspirations are Aaliyah, Michael Jackson, and Fiona Apple. Right now I’ve been listening to a lot of Gallant, Jessie Ware, SG Lewis, Leo Kalyan, Sinead Harnett, Banks, Bishop Briggs, Jhene Aiko, and Alina Baraz. It’s such an exciting time for artists right now–I’m constantly finding new amazing talent on Spotify!
Aside from music, you also teach yoga in your spare time. How long have you been doing yoga and what do you love most about it?
I’ve been practicing yoga for seven years. Initially I knew nothing about it and had no interest, but my friend asked me to go with her, so along I went, and took my first Bikram yoga class. After the initial, “omg it’s SO hot—I can’t believe she brought me here!!! I think I’m going to puke—no–pass out?!?” thoughts escaped my mind, I left and couldn’t believe how amazing I felt. I’ve always had bad insomnia and anxiety and that night I slept like a baby! I was hooked. I continued practicing Bikram for two years, then transitioned to vinyasa flow and power yoga (still hot). Over the years, yoga has turned into so much more than just a physical practice. I’ve learned to let go of the past and the things I can’t change, and love me for me. Yoga was a huge part of my life when I was writing both The Light and Waves. Yoga still continues to change its purpose for me daily. More recently, becoming a teacher, yoga has become an amazing sense of community. I’m surrounded by some of the most amazing souls and energy I’ve ever encountered and it keeps me striving to be a better me everyday.
What else can we expect from you during 2018?
More music, shows, and music videos!!!
‘Cosmos’ is available now. Waves will be released later this year.