Every Monday we will be bringing you an unsigned singer or band as part of our Independent Music Monday feature. This week, we caught up with Cerian to find out more…
Where are you from and how did you first get into music?
I grew up just South West of London in Surrey. Our house was always full of music, as my Dad is a pianist and my Mum is a primary school music teacher. I also danced from a really young age and I can't remember music not being at the heart of everything!
Who were your musical influences when you were growing up and who are your influences now?
Growing up I was surrounded by a lot of jazz, and classical music. I completely fell I love with the classic Great American Songbook songs, and Antonio Carlos Jobim. I wasn’t really introduced to the world of pop and rock until I went to Glastonbury for the first time and everything changed! Watching Brian Wilson and his band was amazing, they were all such brilliant musicians. I also completely fell for Coldplay, and still love them now; seeing them play Glastonbury is one of my favourite gig memories, as is seeing Radiohead there, who are one of my favourite bands. I still have to pinch myself to believe I sang on their latest album.
I enjoy listening to lots of varied music, classics like Kate Bush and Fleetwood Mac as well as newer acts like London Grammar, Rae Morris, I’m With Her, The Staves and Lianne La Havas.
How would you describe your sound?
I would say "dark ethereal indie alt folk pop" - I know that's a bit of a mouthful! Some people have said my sound is a cross between Joni Mitchell, Kate Bush and London Grammar, which is a massive compliment, and fine by me!
What is your latest single called and what was the influence behind it?
My debut single is called "WASTELAND". It is the first of five songs to be released one per month, forming an EP called “Caught in the Dark”. I am a lifelong insomniac and almost completely nocturnal, and all these songs were written in the dead of night, when loneliness and fear feel quite acute. Wasteland was written when I was trying to gain the confidence to share my music with the world for the first time, and it deals with the fear of wanting to move forward, but not knowing if you will fly or fall if you can find the courage to jump off the cliff into the unknown.
What’s your local music scene like?
The music scene in London is awesome! There are always so many gigs going on and so many great open mics and nights. I met so many friends and future collaborators when I started out doing open mics and still now gigging and meeting fellow artists. The artists I’ve met form a large portion of the music I listen to - there are so many incredible unsigned independent artists out there.
What do you have planned for the next 12 months? Any albums or festivals?
As I mentioned, I have five singles coming out this year, and the full EP will be out in February, along with a big launch concert. Wasteland is out now, and Seasons will be the next single, released in September. There’ll also be a video and remix of Wasteland. This Summer I am going on tour to Poland and really excitingly an American tour in the Autumn!
Is there anyone you’d love to collaborate with?
So many people, I wouldn’t know where to start! I do love Coldplay, that would be awesome.
Any funny stories surrounding your live performances?
When I was playing Glastonbury last year, I had one performance at 2am. We had been watching Foo Fighters headline the Pyramid stage (they were awesome) and afterwards my bandmate said “shall we have quick power nap before our set?” I don’t know how it happened but my alarm didn’t go off, and we woke up at five to two! The feeling of horror was real! Anyway we managed to make it and it ended up being one of my favourite performances ever - the crowd were amazing and it was a great way of waking up!!
What is the one thing that you want readers to know about you?
For any chefs - I hate cucumber.
For any music fans - I absolutely love making music and performing live, so do check out my music online and come along to a gig - I play harp, piano and guitar and am working on my standup set, so you’re guaranteed variety at the very least. Sign up to my mailing list for news of gigs and releases: http://www.cerianmusic.com/subscribe/