Each month we ask an artist what's actually their favourite song when they're not trying to be cool
LC: Hi Georgia. You’re a fan of ‘Bat Out Of Hell’ by Meatloaf. I’d like to hear more about that please.
G: Meatloaf wasn’t someone we played a lot in my household. We admired him and some of the songs are amazing, but I’ve got very clear memories of associating this song with my friend who knows every single word. Every. Single. Word. And wherever we are, since we were 18, she puts it on, whether we’re at a house party, in the club, whatever. She requested it in Ibiza. Something takes over her and she wants Meatloaf all of a sudden. So I associate this song with good times – people throwing the rulebook out and just fucking singing it, top of their lungs. When you make music, you can get very consumed with the process – “How did they do this? How did they do that?” – I get very analytical. With ‘Bat Out Of Hell’, I just go, “Fuck it, this is a classic.” You don’t want to understand it, you just want to sing it.
LC: Are you a karaoke person?
G: Yeah, whenever we do karaoke, that song comes on. There’s something very empowering about singing ‘Bat Out of Hell’; especially when I watch my best friend do it, all of her troubles and woes go to one side – and it’s for like four or five minutes, it’s quite a long song. She’s just in a complete state of euphoria. There are certain songs that just do that to people. And although she sounds good, it doesn’t really matter if she sounds good or bad.
LC: What are your other go-to karaoke songs?
G: Well I used to do [Prince’s] ‘Purple Rain’ but it’s really long, and people lost interest halfway through. The ending goes on for four or five minutes, and in different karaoke bands they cut the ending, but in the last one we did, in Soho, I did that whole ending and by the end people were just chatting while I was going “Ooo-ooh!” Anyway, I do like doing Fleetwood Mac, AC/DC, just things that aren’t too serious.
LC: You want something to really belt out, right?
G: Yeah, or you do Celine Dion and really try to fucking sing. But I don’t have the balls for that.
LC: This all sounds very theatrical though. How many times have you, for example, taken to the stage on a motorbike?
G: There is a side of me that’s yearning to get on stage on a motorbike or be like Spinal Tap, that knows that live music can be taken into such silly areas. We’re all very concerned with being cool, but in the ’80s bands did some silly, silly things.
I’ve always been quite theatrical – I did it at school, I like drama, I like artists that aren’t afraid to add a bit of drama into their performance. That’s what I like about Billie Eilish actually, or Beyoncé. I experienced it first-hand when I went on tour with the Flaming Lips – the whole thing is inclusively silly, there are these big bubbles and Wayne [Coyne, Flaming Lips frontman] isn’t afraid to take the audience on this really theatrical journey. He’s had such an effect on the live music industry – Coldplay releasing the balls and all that, it’s a nod to Wayne. He’s a DIY master. Anything you can think of, he wants to try and do.
Live music comes from theatre, from vaudeville, from unusual groups of people. When Little Richard performed it was like going to a sermon. In London it’s very cool and a bit too sterile.
LC: I was gonna ask if your mates know you’re into all this silly stuff, but it sounds like you’re pretty keen to share it.
G: Oh yeah. I’ll often just sing ‘Where Is Love?’ from Oliver when I’m with my friends. I was obsessed with that musical when I was a kid, that’s all I watched; obsessed with the Artful Dodger, named our dog after him, ended up playing him in a school play. It’s London-based, it’s Dickens… sometimes I walk the streets of central and east London and I’ll start doing ‘Who Will Buy?’. So I definitely share it with my mates, yeah. When I was on tour for my first record we played a show in Paris and got absolutely obliterated afterwards, and we had to get an early Eurostar. We were all still completely pissed and we were in this elevator going down and I just broke out into ‘Where Is Love?’. Everyone laughed and joined in.
LC: That’s a great way to fight through a hangover.
G: Yeah, just break out into song. I think it helped some of the crew.
Photography by Will Spooner