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First Look Friday: UK Singer Etta Bond's Got DJ Lindsey Excited About R&B (Again)
First Look Friday: UK Singer Etta Bond's Got DJ Lindsey Excited About R&B (Again)

First Look Friday: UK Singer Etta Bond's Got DJ Lindsey Excited About R&B (Again)

First Look Friday: UK Singer Etta Bond's Got DJ Lindsey Excited About R&B (Again)

At OKP we are always on our watchdog for both new talent and newly-discovered classics and one of our most reliable sources in both categories is longtime homegirl DJ Lindsey, she of legendary NYC residencies like Negroclash, The Hump and The Boom Boom Room. So when she put us up on new-brand UK talent Etta Bond, we quickly recruited her (or did she recruit us?) to handle a First Look profile on Ms. Bond, who just released her first solo EP.

UK singer Etta Bond is living proof that it's an exciting time (again) for r&b music. People are actually listening to it, both at home and in the club and appreciating really talented and exciting vocalists with or without pitch-altering--and there's some Cool Urban New Talent bubbling just under the surface in London. After making noise via two EPs with producer Raf Riley, Bond has released a solo EP. As the first artist signed to UK label Odd Child Recordings she's been free to just create with a little help from her friends and it shows; sound-wise, it seems that her music is something Bond is enjoying and experimenting with. As she tells us in the interview, she just goes into the studio and takes a more visceral approach from session to session. Although I've been checking for her all along, I had to hit OKP with this new release because I think that she deserves more shine stateside despite being relatively new. Anytime I play anything by her I get the wide-eyed, phone-in-hand, "who IS this" instant fan. Here's the low down on Bond's new EP #CoolNewUrbanTalent (stream below)--read on to get to Ms. Bond a little better with this First Look interview, and check her two previous EPs Emergency Room and Meds with Raf Riley.

DJ Lindsey: What was your approach when beginning this last project since it's the first time in a while you've done something without Raf Riley as a duo?

Etta Bond: I just get in the studio and treat it like my diary until I have the songs I need. That's how it's always been. I don't have an approach particularly. Just let me at it and don't give me any directions.

DL: Will there be more projects with Raf...or will you be focusing more on solo work?

EB: Joint projects or not, Raf and I will always make music together. He's been exploring musically 'n working on some stuff of his own which is exciting. We're family. We'll always be there for each other, musically and spiritually. Music is the purest love I've ever known. Once I've truly connected on that level with someone, we'll always be in a place together.

DL: How did you choose the producers and Delilah as collaborators. There was only the one feature which is refreshing. It seems like a lot of newer artists go all out with cosigns and you seem to be standing on your own.

EB: I don't choose anything necessarily, we attract each other. I'm close to all three of them. Raf, Chris and Delilah. It was natural. What you're hearing is friendship, a certain understanding between people. It's genuine love, and that really makes things sound nice.

DL: What's next for you? Will there be a full length album?

EB: Well, I've got my first single waiting in the wings. So that's what's next. It's a track called 18, produced by MNEK. As for my album, it has been and will be a work in progress. You'll get one.

Who illustrates the artwork for your releases? Is it a process where you give the illustrator an idea of what you want or do you just allow him (is it Dangerman?) to do whatever he wants with your approval?

EB: Reuben Dangoor (@reubendangerman, yes). One of Raf's best friends. If you love Raf, you'll love Reuben and vice versa. Like minded creative people. I hadn't spoken to Reuben in ages, I text him "cool urban new talent" and nothing else. He responded, "best title ever". Find people on your wave and you won't need too many words. We perhaps have a natter on the phone and that's about it really, I just leave him to it. He gets it. He also did the artwork for my two EP's with Raf, Emergency Room and Meds. He's the man behind the videos for Boring Bitches and Resolve as well. He's massively talented.

DL: How did you come up with the name of this project besides a fun way to say the C word without actually saying it?

First Look Friday: UK Singer Etta Bond's Got DJ Lindsey Excited About R&B (Again)

That's about it! And the label hated it so that was pretty much a seal of approval for me. Being an artist, people always want to define you. I'm just taking the piss really.

DL:Are you playing in the states anytime soon?

EB: I'd really love to. I feel like I need to come say hi...

DL: I know that Odd Child is a label created to support new talent, how has it been as their first artist? I know sometimes the initial intentions of labels can be great but then when it's time to pay bills it can create some issues for the artists where they're pressured to go in certain directions or put things out sooner than they're ready. What has your experience been?

EB: I couldn't ask for anything better, I'm with the people who I came up with and we're all moving forward as a team as well as individually. That's real shit. As long as I stick to my real shit, I'll be able to conquer and overcome any pressures or hurdles that come my way . That's part of progression, struggle. So I welcome it, I want to be tested.

DL: Your hair and style has been a constant eclectic changing thing, how do you approach that. How do your fans deal with the change? Do you care how they feel about the change?

EB: I think it's a good thing! People should feel more free and open to change. It's about exploring yourself, making your own choices. My whole life is work in progress, every aspect. My image is just part of it. The right people see beyond.. I'm teaching myself too. A few years ago I wouldn't have dreamt of cutting my hair this short. But it's only hair, it will grow back. Who cares. If you feel like making a change, why shouldn't you? Because your boyfriend wouldn't like it? I'm just extremely expressive and nothing can stop me. Not a boyfriend, not society, not my pals, not the government. Not even my mum. Lol! No one. I must. Be. Expressive. Not to please people, but because I might as well be dead if I didn't.

DL: Love the production on this EP and the way it sets the mood for these songs--did you write to the sonics or the other way around?

EB: It tends to all get done at the same time, we create together. Think of making music like making a baby and it all becomes a lot clearer. I don't know how I'm gonna feel on the day, I prefer not to plan my creativity. I don't really know what I need to say sometimes until the music draws it out of me. That's the beauty of life, the not knowing. That's the beauty of music, too.

 DL: Last question. Are you the lovechild of Etta James and James Bond?

EB: Probably.