Izzy Bizu’s claims, “Yes I Am” with Cacharel
V caught up with songstress fronting the brand's new fragrance.
V caught up with songstress fronting the brand's new fragrance.
Text: Stella Pak
Since the debut of Moment of Madness, Izzy Bizu has reached over 30 million streams and has been vouched for by the likes of Chris Martin. At 23 years old, she has a strong sense of self awareness while her voice illuminates with jazzy, soulful undertones that bend through genres. A British beauty who is the face of Cacharel’s latest fragrance, Yes, I Am, V sat down to chat with where she’s been and where she wants to go.
The Statement of the fragrance is Yes I am. Tell us who you are.
My full name is Isabelle. My artist name is Izzy Bizu. I’m a musician and ambassador for this perfume. Which I’m very happy about because I’ve got such fun experience with French culture. I absolutely love France. When I first started doing music, I went there a lot. I’d sing in trains stations in Saint Lazare. I had loads of fun, teenage memories there. A few years later they asked me to do the campaign (Yes I Am) and they wanted me to give them the song, White Tiger for their advert (directed by Dexter Navy).
Thank you. I actually finished the song in Paris. It’s a great connection. And then they asked me to be the ambassador for their perfume. It’s really cool because it reminds me of that time. The perfume is sweet. It’s spicy. I feel like you can put on a couple of sprays and you don’t need to put it on again. It’s pretty carefree. So it’s super cool. Really nice hints of raspberry and cardamom.
How do you wear it? Does it last through the night?
I wear it more during the nighttime. I feel like it’s kind of strong. I’m kind of like a night owl. For a stronger perfume I like to wear it at nighttime.
You are a musician. Maybe it’s a stereotype but I think artists have a tendency to be a night owl.
You’re right. The gigs are in the evening and when you do gigs in the evening, you want to have fun afterwards. You just go out after.
Because you’re a singer/songwriter, is there a tendency to get emotionally attached to your music? You go on tour, you perform it over and over… what are your feelings towards it at the end?
I used to get overly attached to my music and it was really beautiful in the beginning but it becomes quite unhealthy.
In what way?
Well, when you’re writing a piece of music, it’s important not to get too attached to it and just be subconsciously connected without being in love with the idea because that becomes sort of self absorbed in a way. It’s about releasing and not about keeping it in. So I think it’s about release. So I think it’s important not to be too attached about it. And so recently I was just told by somebody that you should not get too attached to ideas and just let it run free sort of thing. And if the idea is good enough or if it really means something, it’ll always come back to you. Whether you like it or not. So that’s how you could keep it fresh because sometimes if you perform it a thousand times, it can be tiring always trying to find the same attachment.
The emotional expression wouldn’t be consistent over the times.
If I’m honest with you, if you tried to relive a novelty, it’ll never be the same since the last time so you always have to recreate a new novelty. Which is the great thing about perfume. Every time I put it on, it’s probably the one thing that does make you feel comfortable or the same. It’s part of my routine.
Your mother is from Ethiopia and your father is from the UK. Who has been your greatest musical or stylistic influence?
I really love Marvin Gaye. I love the Black Keys.
They are so good!
Yes, They are so amazing.
Have you heard the album where they featured artists like Jim Jones and Dame Dash I believe produced it.
What does the cover look like?
Yes. I love that one (BlakRoc) and I love brothers as well. I’ve seen them live. They’ve got this full-bodied sound and it’s heavy and vulnerable. I love Everlasting Light. It’s got soul and hip-hop. Rock. It’s beautiful.
So this is a fantasy question. If you were to go to a make believe concert with your favorite performers, dead or alive, who would it be?
He’s really like an amazing artist. I never get bored listening to him. I really like Leonard Cohen. He’s the guy who wrote Hallelujah. He’s really; really poetic and I really love poetic music. His lyrics are so beautiful. He’s been writing since he was young right up until he was old. It’s really rare to see musicians to have a really full lifestyle where you get to know each chapter of his life. He has a nice perspective of when he was young and when he’s old as well on how he feels.
I remember discovering Hallelujah through Jeff Buckley.
That was amazing wasn’t it? That video was so tender. So nice.
If you were to collaborate with someone musically, who would it be? What kind of energy would you want it to be?
I’m really liking rappers at the moment. I would love to work with Drake. Or Kanye. That would be amazing. I love Childish Gambino as well. If I could ever work with the Black Keys, that would be amazing.
An artist like Childish Gambino is really putting out socially relevant body of work.
Which is nice. It’s been a while since that’s been a thing. I like the humor that Childish Gambino puts into dark topics to throw us off a bit to make us be like… “What?” And it’s also for the people so it relates to everybody. So the people who do bad things or don’t do bad things simply or just people who are simply in the middle who doesn’t know what it feels like to be treated that way. Who don’t know what it feels like to be mean. It shows you another perspective. His producer (Ludwig Göransson) is really good too. I saw a video of how he shows how he produced Redbone. It’s really good.
From your debut of Moment of Madness in 2016, how have you evolved from that now?
I’m so far from that. I really loved writing that album. I wrote that when I was 18 or something. It was 6 years old. It was released a couple years after and now I’m onto an EP. It’s getting released really soon. It’s got a couple of really cool collaborations on it. It’s got more electronic hip-hop feel with indie touches to it. That was more through me listening to current music because I was listening to more retro music before. And then the more hip-hop movement influenced me a lot as well with different rhythms. It’s a more experimental EP. It’s sort of helped me find ideas of what I like to do for the album. It’s coming out in mid October.
Do you have a name?
I’m not gonna tell you. You’ll have to wait! The name is so embarrassing.
Don’t be embarrassed! Do you!
People are like “Oh, I spent so long thinking about the name…” I literally wrote something on a piece of paper and said, “OK!”
And then you have to commit to it.
The whole thing about the EP is not thinking too much. Just sailing out.