EXCLUSIVE: Interview With Runrummer

Fast rising UK Electro-Pop artist Runrummer has recently released her infectious debut single ‘Good For Nothing’. The track is really building and fans and critics alike are really enjoying the song.

Here we speak exclusively to Runrummer to discuss her debut release, future plans, musical inspirations and more:

Growing up who inspired your love of music?

This is such a huge question! So many people and styles have inspired me over the years, it’s difficult to confine it down to one answer, but the biggest influences definitely came from my mum and dad. Although they don’t play any instruments themselves, there was always music blaring through our house. From my dad the biggest inspiration was David Bowie. Bowie was, and still is, his idol. Whenever my mum was out we would listen to all his Bowie records back-to-back then watch some cut-throat Tarantino movie. Kill Bill was our jam. Then my mum would come home and throttle him because I was only 10.  And while we’re on the subject of Tarantino I must take the time to shoutout his movie soundtracks – they’re all completely incredible!

Can you pinpoint the exact moment you decided to pursue music professionally?

Ever since I got my first guitar and realised I could write a hook it has been my dream. But I was always told that music wasn’t a real career, that I should focus on school and university and get a proper office job. Consequently it’s taken me a very long time to build up the balls to actually pursue music seriously, particularly after a few set-backs through my teens. Now I’ve ticked all the hypothetical boxes of what it means to be a normal functioning human being, I can turn my focus to the thing that I’ve been dreaming about for the last decade. The exact penny drop moment that happened was when I went on a trip to Jordan with some friends in March 2017. This was such a special trip and it came at a time where I really needed a psychological boost. I ended up having a sort of life epiphany one night when we were camping out in the desert under the stars. I returned to London with a mission and I’ve never looked back since.

How would you describe your musical journey so far?
It’s been a rocky road to say the least. Although this is my debut release and no one really knows my name, I have been involved in writing and recording for quite a long time. When I was 11 my little cousin got an electric guitar and I thought it was the coolest thing in the world. We started writing songs together almost immediately. He would write the chords, I would write the lyrics and we’d perform as much as we could at school and family get-togethers. It was all very indie, acoustic and innocent. By 16 I got working with a couple of DJs in Hereford through a contact at Gatecrasher, Birmingham. I originally got in touch with them to start recording my own stuff but they liked my voice and asked me if I would try writing for them, so I ended up switching from indie to EDM and fell in love with it pretty fast. One of our tracks got picked up by Showtek and they flew us out to the Netherlands to record with them in their studio. This was around the time they released ‘Booyah’ which reached number 5 on the UK singles chart and number 1 on the UK dance chart, so it was a big break for us! I quickly got involved with their label 2 Dutch and got put on the roster for topline EDM writers with Strengholt. This is when I started writing lyrics for artists like The Chainsmokers. I was still very young at this point though, and after a few bad experiences with my manager I decided to breakaway and turn my focus towards university. Over the next few years I struggled with mental health and lost touch with songwriting. When I got out of uni, moved down to London and started a normal office job, I fell into quite a deep depression and felt very lost. I missed making music. I knew that’s what I wanted to do but I felt like I’d missed my chance and I couldn’t find a way back into the industry. The Jordan trip was important because it gave me the opportunity to step back for a second and re-evaluate everything. The day after I got back to London I knocked on the door of a studio (Cafe Music) round the corner from my flat in Bow and the rest has snowballed from there. I met my amazing co-producer Rob Daniels, we spent a good few months experimenting with sounds, then the tunes started to flow thick and fast. At the same time I was attending evening classes at London College of Creative Media (LCCM) learning how to produce myself. This is something I feel has really held me back in the past; having to rely so much on other people, writing songs for their music rather than my own and not being able to be in creative control. Now I’m in a place where I feel a lot older and wiser. I have confidence in what I’m doing, I feel in complete creative control and I’ve surrounded myself with good people who share the same vision as myself. What more could an artist want?
What would you say the main inspiration is when you’re writing new songs?
I usually write to get things off my chest, to deal with emotions I can’t otherwise control and to make sense of things which are otherwise nonsensical. There’s also something nice about being able to tell your own story and connect with people at the same time. If a song can address something important whilst also being relatable to other people then I think that’s something special. I love the way music can impact people like that.
In three words how would you describe your sound to new listeners?
Urban, vibey and unashamed. Others have told me it’s “very LDN” which I think is a good thing. There’s definitely strong urban vibes running through the artwork and video which is reflective of the tone of the music.
Your debut single ‘Good For Nothing’ is out now, what inspired the track?

Good For Nothing is about my struggles with depression, anxiety and the way those struggles can change you as a person, feeling sometimes like you have two different identities or personalities which you can’t control. As a listener I suppose it sounds like I’m talking about a lover, but in reality I’m calling out this darker side of myself. It’s all very self-reflective and inward looking. The way it creeps in is almost like a lover you can’t resist. “You hold my hand, I feel my face is blushing” – that’s this other side of me coming in, taking control and I’m helpless to stop it. Then the chorus tries to reflect the inevitable descent into blissful madness. We really tried to capture this in the music video.

What do you hope fans take from the single?

For the lead single I wanted to choose a track which would be the most accessible to the widest possible range of people, while at the same time tackling an issue which I feel is very prevalent, particularly among young people today. Good For Nothing fits the bill as it’s the most mainstream ‘pop’ track on the EP. It’s catchy as hell and a proper summer banger while still managing to address quite a dark and troubling issue. Although I fear it’s become a bit of a buzzword in recent years, we must continue to keep the conversation going about mental health! If I can be open and honest about my struggles, I hope this can help others to be open, honest and unembarrassed too.

Can we expect an album from you soon?

Yes you can! I’m heading back to the studio in September with the mighty Rob Daniels (my producer). I’ve got a bunch of songs lined up and ready to go and I can’t wait to see them grow. I love albums because they give you the opportunity to take people on a proper musical journey. I can’t wait to craft that. It’s very exciting. A big dream of mine is also to have something on vinyl, so rest assured it’ll be a good one for the record player.

Do you have any touring plans lined up?

Band formation is currently underway. My main priority right now is to build the best team around me. It’s very important not to rush that process, especially if you want it to work well long-term! Once the full EP drops in November we plan to start gigging regularly so watch this space!

What are your long term career goals?

I would love to become a professional songwriter and lyricist. I’m always writing songs with other singers in mind. For example I’ve started writing a Christmas song for Adele, and one called Nightcrawler which I think would be perfect for Alex Turner and the Arctic Monkeys. They’ll probably never see the light of day but it’s fun to step back and change your perspective every once in a while. Writing for different people can feel like a breath of fresh air. It allows me to step into other genres and it gives me ideas I’d never have thought of if I was only writing for myself and my own vocal range/style.

Make sure you follow Runrummer on Twitter @Runrummermusic.

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Written by Laura Klonowski

Qualified music journalist! Writing single/album/live reviews, feature articles, interviews, and news pieces.
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