You may not know who Alice Merton is…yet, but we have a feeling that she will be making a bigger splash in North America soon! The international singer-songwriter, who is currently living in Germany, is poised to breakout in the US with her new single, “No Roots”. We had the good fortune of being able to chat with the up and coming musician and had the chance to ask her about her influences and being able to travel the world.
We hope you enjoy this chat as much as we did and we would love to introduce you to: Alice Merton!
Lemonade Magazine: Thanks so much for taking the time to chat with us, Alice! I’ve been told you’ve lived all over the world. Could tell us a little about that?
Alice Merton: Hi, Lemonade Magazine! I wouldn’t say I’ve lived all over the world yet, but I’m definitely on my way there.
I was born in Germany but after three months we moved to the US (Connecticut). Then we moved to Canada where I spent a good chunk of my childhood. We moved then again within Canada and when I was 13 my parents decided to move back to Europe. I spent five years in Germany where I finished high school, then moved to England. I decided to move back to Germany at some point to study songwriting.
These various moves inspired my song, “No Roots” because I felt like I wasn’t at home in one certain place. My relatives were also scattered all over the globe because half of my family lives in Ireland, the other half in Chicago…so I grew up basically not really seeing and knowing my relatives.
LM: And because you’ve lived in different places and cultures, how did that influence your music?
AM: Living in different places has influenced my music in various ways. When I was growing up in Canada I was listening to a lot of classical music, even opera. I don’t know why but I was obsessed with opera. I think a lot of the melodies are still swimming around in my head which is one of the reasons I love good melodies.
When I moved to Germany I started listening to a lot of indie rock and indie pop. I loved The Killers and I loved the way Brandon Flowers put together the lyrics. I also fell in love with Regina Spektor’s music. She has such a unique style and way of phrasing things. It’s quirky and clever and still very approachable.
When I lived in England I was inspired by a lot of English artists such as Tom Odell, Sam Smith, The 1975. I guess all these different artists I listened to from each period of my life influenced my songwriting and style.
LM: That is so awesome. And you can hear those influences. If someone asked me who you reminded me of, I would probably compare you to Florence Welch, but with a bit more dance influences. Who inspired you musically growing up?
AM: Growing up I was in fact inspired by Florence Welch. But I love making people dance and I feel like I was very much inspired by an album from the Alan Parsons Project called Stereotomy. I love putting elements from the 80s in songs, and I think when my album comes out, you’ll be able to hear that.
LM: Your debut single, “No Roots”, has been on rotation in Europe for a bit, but is finally getting some much deserved airplay in North America. What was it like hearing your song the first time outside of the studio?
AM: I’m so excited that “No Roots” is finally catching on in North America! It’s been amazing watching the development in Europe so I can’t wait to see what happens on the other side of the pond. It was an amazing feeling hearing my song outside of the studio. It took a while though – everyone else was messaging me telling me they had just heard the song, and I still hadn’t heard it. After about four months though the day finally came where I got into a cab, and on came “No Roots”! It felt rewarding, and it definitely made my day.
LM: Wow! It took 4 months? You also created a music video for the single, that is pretty no frills, but is still memorable. What was the experience like during the shoot?
AM: We only had one day to shoot the video, because we couldn’t afford to rent that location for longer. It was all very much low budget. A lot of producers and directors turned us down because we didn’t have the money to afford a fancy video. I was lucky that the videographer Maximilian Stolarow liked the song and we discussed different situations of how I should make my debut to the world. We wanted to keep it simple, but still have a few elements such as lighting or patterns that made the video stand out. The director wanted me to perform the song the way I would on stage – so that’s what I did. It felt natural to work with him and I knew I could truly be myself.
LM: Currently, you are on the road traveling throughout Germany performing, but what else does 2017 and beyond hold? Should we expect more music and maybe a North American/US tour?
AM: We are definitely planing on playing some shows this year in the US! I want to also spend some more time in Canada and in the US and build an audience. I feel like its important for me, because it’s part of my past and I have this connection to North America that I don’t want to loose.
LM: Thank you again, Alice! Congratulations on “No Roots”!
You can pick up the single, “No Roots” by Alice Merton on iTunes now and check out the music video for the single below!