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"Having a particular image to stick to is frustrating" - Interview with RHI (musician and producer)

Actualizado: 19 jul 2022


With only 4 of her songs, she accumulates more than two million reproductions on Spotify. Rhiannon Bouvier, artistically known as "Rhi" tells us about her experience in the music industry and why is not so bad to be a “bedroom-artist". Her music has been described as: “Seductive electronic pop with woozy, hip-hop inspired beats for the late-night hours”.




How was your musical education when you were a child? Was it very different in your teenage years?


I started having private piano lessons when I was about 8, which kick started my love of music. My mum played, so she inspired me to pick it up. I was actually pretty lucky because in my high school in Canada, we also had the opportunity to learn instruments from around age 13. Saxophone was my main instrument throughout high school, although I tried several - clarinet, trombone, bassoon, percussion, among others. Around that time, I also started teaching myself guitar and had a few lessons in school. Guitar quickly became my passion and before I got into electronic music, it was my main writing tool.


Your new EP (Nocturnes) is out now, why do you think longer records are not as relevant as before?


There's such a vast selection of music available these days on so many different platforms, and a lot of playlisting that goes on, so I think people are more likely to skip from one artist to the next. Because of the nature of social media and scrolling, our attention spans are shorter and listening to a full-length album by just one artist is more of a commitment. My thinking was that people would be more likely to listen to a 3-track EP than say a 10 or 11 track album. I didn't want any tracks to fall by the wayside.


How do you approach the creative aspect of composing a song? Do you have a method?


Usually I start by composing the instrumental - so I'll get a simple beat and keys part on loop. Once I've set the tone for the song, I'll start to write the words. Once the lyrics are finished, I'll go back to the instrumental and develop it more. Sometimes the finished track sounds completely different to the original demo.


Some of your songs are quite popular on Spotyfy but you are not very keen on performing live. Would you consider yourself a ‘bedroom artist’?


To some degree - I really love the writing process and that's when I feel most in my element. I would like to return to performing at some point though.


If you had to select a single song from your repertoire that better defines you or your style which one would you choose?


That's a tricky one - I would say each release defines me in that moment. When I wrote Plain Jane, I felt like that best represented me at that time... but I wouldn't say it does currently; since then, I've definitely evolved as a person and a producer. So yeah, I would say each release is a good indicator of where I was at in that moment, whilst writing those songs.

From the outside, the music industry seems to be less male dominated than before, am I right?


It depends. When it comes to production/engineering, it's still very much male-dominated. A lot of people hear my music and assume it's been produced by someone else, and producers are almost always assumed to be male. The fact is that the majority of producers are men, so it's not surprising that people make that assumption. I do make a point of saying I produce my solo work - not out of ego, but simply to show that women are more than capable of doing it too. I'm sure over time, more and more women will get into it.


With everything you know now about the music industry, do you look back and wish you have done something different? Any advice for any young musician who is starting?


Focusing too much on the industry can have a detrimental effect on what you do, because it's a pretty cut-throat place. I ask myself often if it was the right path to go down, but ultimately music has always been my passion - and when it's a passion, it almost feels like that choice has already been made. I think you just have to make sure you're doing it for the right reasons - obviously you want people to like what you do, but anything creative in its purest form is really just about you expressing yourself authentically. It's about doing what you love, simply because you love it. People liking it is really just a nice bonus.


In the past there used to be plenty of bands but today they are clearly the exception. What had happened?


I think music will probably gradually circle back to that...kind of like fashion (and the resurgence of 90s style, for example) trends come and go. But these days it's so easy to do everything on your own - if you've got a laptop and a decent DAW, you can make a full-band track all by yourself.


Out of the many cliches of being a musician, which one makes you laugh the most?

I'm not sure it's a cliche, but for me having a particular "image" to stick to is frustrating - we're humans, so we're constantly learning, changing and evolving - I think music should reflect that.




Find out more about Rhi on:


Instagram: @rhi.music

Facebook: rhimusic1

Website: www.rhi-music.com


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