V's Class of 2018: Betsy

V's Class of 2018: Betsy

The Welsh artist jumped from fashion to music in the blink of an eye, with huge goals for the future.

The Welsh artist jumped from fashion to music in the blink of an eye, with huge goals for the future.

Text: Staff

From her voice alone, Betsy is a force to be reckoned with. The bleach blonde vixen broke off from the fashion world (she had a job at Balenciaga!) and dived headfirst into her music career, with a booming and soulful voice that's drawn comparisons to legends like Cher. The release of her debut album last year makes the rising artist an easy pick for our Class of 2018. Read on as Betsy answers our questions about success, challenges, and her wild dream collaboration.

What's your vision for the industry you work in for 2018?

Exciting! It's so fast-moving, every time you blink, there's a new sound or new artist that you hadn't heard of. The joys of Spotify! It's bloody genius. I'm so psyched, I feel its going to be explosive. #BetsyPredictions

What's the best advice you've ever received and why? 

Give less fucks about the little annoyances in life, because tomorrow you might be dead. I think that's a pretty damn good one. It puts things into perspective on those occasions when you start taking yourself and life too seriously.

What social/political issues or causes resonate with you most, and why? 

Equality for the LGBTI community. Many of my peers, friends, and fans are LGBTI, and it is outrageous that in 2018 the LGBTI community still face discrimination and abuse. And it horrifies me that many people face violence and rejection from their own families. We must do more to support each other. We are all equal.

What has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far? How did you overcome it? 

Dealing with anxiety and depression. It's something that I struggled silently with for many years, feeling I was crazy, feeling self hatred, wishing I hadn't been born, and feeling too ashamed, embarrassed and foolish to ask for help. In the end, someone very close to me recognised the problem and took me to the doctor. This was the best thing that ever happened to me and changed my life.

How did you get your start?

Well it was a bit of luck and bit of graft! I had made a three-track demo on Garageband without a mic, recording straight into the computer, so everything was recorded in the room. I just dragged my guitar amp close to the laptop! I sent it to any music related addres' I could get my hands on — radio, labels, TV. Sadly no one ever got back to me! Fortunately I had given a CD to my friend from Wales whose brother worked in a PR company in London. My now manager walked into his office looking for singers and my mates brother said "Check out this girl," and that was my start!

How do you define success for yourself? Is it different than happiness? 

Different to happiness, but they definitely overlap. Success for me is getting recognition from my fans and peers, feeling proud of myself, and feeling like I'm maybe coming close to the achievements of the people who inspired me to do what I do. That and being able to buy my self a 80s soft-top Mercedes.

When and where do you feel most creative?

Writing. With another writer or writing alone. For my first album, I was locked away in my grotty old caravan in the middle of nowhere. At the moment, I've taken myself off to the countryside to be with the dogs, a log fire and write for hours in the wilderness. I wear PJs and flat shoes (horror of horrors) and just get all hippie and write tunes.

Who is your dream collaborator, in any field (music, art, fashion, etc.) and what kind of project would you love to do with this person? 

It has to be Kanye West. I mean we couldn't be more different as artists, but there's such so much life in his music. That's what made me want to be a musician, like hearing Tina Turner singing in the 60s — raw, exciting, passionate. It's like there's a fire inside of Kanye West that just burst out of him in his music. Untameable. When I listen to his music my blood boils and the hairs on the back of my neck stand up.

Where do you want to be professionally in 5 years? In 10 years? 

I want to be big-balling it of course! Playing the Royal Albert Hall, kicking back with the stars, running my own fashion and music label, and not to forget, fulfilling my lifelong dream of becoming the creative director of Playboy.

What is the most enjoyable part of your job(s)? 

That every day is different, you never know what's going to happen, who you're going to meet, where a session, a song, or person might take you; that around every corner is the possibility of making your dreams come true.

Credits: Casting by Harbinger Creative.

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