Hawaii-bred, Los Angeles based, alt-pop group Crimson Apple comprises of 4 talented sisters including Colby, Shelby, Carthi, and Faith Benson.
Since the band’s inception in 2012, Crimson Apple has shared the stage with such venerated artists as Will Champlain, Switchfoot, All Time Low, The Green, Hawaiian music legends, HAPA, and One Republic. The group’s 2015 debut album, Hello, garnered commercial airing in Hawaii, and across the internet, including earning spins on iHeartMedia and Star 101.9.
The year of its debut, the sisters also earned nominations for Alternative Album of the Year, Most Promising Artist of the Year, and Group of the Year at the Na Hoku Hanohano Awards, Hawaii’s equivalent of the Grammy Awards.
With strong concepts, meaningful lyrics, and powerful vocal as well as musical arrangements, Crimson Apple is already drawing attention.
Recently, the group released their single “Can’t Get Out of Bed” under Amuse Group, the team behind J-Pop sensations like Perfume and Babymetal. In an interview with CelebMix, the group talked about their relocation from Hawaii to LA, their new single, and the upcoming EP. Check out the interview below:
Hi! Please tell our readers a bit about yourself.
Hello, we’re Crimson Apple! We are four sisters originally from Hawaii, now located in California! We would describe our music as pop-alternative with honest and relatable themes.
How did your musical journey begin (as individuals and as a group)? Also, from 2012 till now, how do you see your evolution as artists?
Our lead singer, Colby, began singing at a young age and decided pretty early on that she wanted a career in music. Around the age of 15, she decided to start a band to gain more experience with live performing. Shelby had just picked up electric guitar at the time, inspired by bands like Paramore, Panic at the Disco, and Fall Out Boy. They formed a band together with some friends and started performing around Hawaii. Surrounded by the music, Faith and Carthi decided to pick up their perspective instruments and began their own music journeys. There came a point when we all looked at each other and realized we made up the pieces of a band. It was when we started playing together that we realized this was what we were always meant to do. Since then we’ve gone through quite the transformation. We’ve all learned so much throughout the years that has helped us grow in our artistry and as people. Our music has changed with each phase of our life, and we hope to keep evolving throughout our careers.
In your interviews, you have cited several genres as your influences including J-Pop, K-pop, and Alternative Pop. There are listeners who love to explore new music, keeping aside the cultural and language barrier and at the same time, there are listeners who hesitate to try something new for the exact same reasons. What are the things that motivate you to explore different genres?
Growing up in Hawaii, we were surrounded by a lot of different cultures, so it was only natural for us to open ourselves up to many different kinds of music. For us, it never mattered what genre or language the music was in, if it felt good to us, it was good music. One thing that’s so beautiful about music is that it’s a universal language. Anyone, anywhere can listen to a song, and may not understand what language is being sung, but can understand the meaning of the song through the feel of the music.
We went on to listen to your songs including Human Again, Like a Queen, Hello, and manythers and were awestruck by the variety your songs offered in terms of sound and narratives. We would like to learn about your vision as artists. That is, how do you perceive your art?
Since the beginning of our careers, it has always been our goal to be a positive force in the music industry. We tend to write our songs around themes that are important to us and emotions that we go through. We’ve always wanted to be a band with music that is relatable and helps people feel like they’re not alone.
Hawaii has its own cultural history and richness when it comes to music. How did the transition from Hawaii to LA happen?
Hawaii was a really nurturing place to grow up as musicians, but there came a point where we realized if we wanted to further our careers, we had to move to a music capital of the world. Once we made the decision to move, everything happened so fast, it almost felt like our path had been laid out for us. We moved right after the release of our debut album, Hello, and have been making music in LA ever since!
LA is a competitive space but after having a successful debut in the home country, what kind of challenges or opportunities did LA offer to you?
Although there is an alternative music scene in Hawaii, it is quite small. There is a limit to what we could do within our genre of music, since the music scene in Hawaii is predominantly focused on traditional Hawaiian and Island style music. As up and coming artists, we felt like we did everything we possibly could in our hometown. Moving to LA has opened up so many doors for us, and eventually lead us to our current management company, Amuse. We’ve also been able to collaborate with incredible producers and artists we wouldn’t have been able to reach otherwise.
Congratulations for “Can’t Get Out of Bed”. Please tell our readers a bit about the song.
Thank you! Can’t Get Out of Bed was actually a very important release in our career. It marks a huge direction change in our sound, image, and vibe. It’s quite a departure from our 2015 release and we’ve grown so much since then. The song is about our lead singer’s struggle with depression and how hard it was for her to tell the people in her life about it.
The music video has been well conceptualised and executed. The idea of being trapped in what seems to be paradise (ideal state) is quite powerful, especially when we think about the topic the song is trying to address. Please tell us about the creative process that went behind creating the single.
As we were writing the song, we kept getting visions of us in all red in a bright white room. We built the visuals of the music video around this image. There are two concepts we played off of during the creation of the music video. The first concept is directly related to the message of the song. The house represents our minds and how sometimes it’s hard to escape some of the struggles we’re going through. We wanted the house to be beautiful to represent how sometimes someone may seem perfect on the outside, but might have darker struggles underneath it all. The second concept is related to our story as a band and family. The red look represents where we come from and our blood ties to one another. The scenes in the bright white room allude to the fact that we’re sisters in a glorious paradise, but we feel “trapped” . The scenes where we’re trying to escape represents our more rebellious side, the side of ourselves that wanted to escape our paradise in Hawaii and move to LA to pursue our dreams. And the third look, where we’re playing our instruments, represents our future and who we envision ourselves becoming.
When we read YouTube comments, we found how well the song has been received by the listeners. What kinds of responses have you received for the song and the music video?
Overall, the reaction to the song and video have been really positive! We’re so happy to hear how many people are relating to the message of our song, as that is one of our main goals as artists.
Would you like to share with us, your future projects or endeavours?
We’re excited to be releasing our next single very soon, as well as an EP later this year. We can’t wait for everyone to hear what we’ve been working on! We’re also gonna be joining the HSN Spring 2019 tour. We can’t wait to explore the west coast and share our music!