“I just want them to feel something. If it’s happiness, if it’s sadness…as long as I evoke an emotion that’s the best thing I could ask for.”
This week we were got a chance to chat with Brittany Byrne, also known as bb, about her new solo project.
Thank you for hanging out today! For our readers meeting you for the first time, could you give us a quick introduction to you and your music?
I am Brittany Byrne, I am currently a senior Music Industry major at Rowan University and throughout this whole school year I’ve had to come up with a capstone project in order to graduate in May. So I decided to do a four song EP under the name bb (those are my initial so I figured why not go with that). It’s an indie-pop record, a lot of the influences are Bon Iver-Soccer Mommy-Phoebe Bridgers-type-ish. I’m excited for it to be out!
So this was written during one of the craziest years we’ve seen in a long time, what was making an EP like during all of that?
Basically every time I sat down to write it was a therapy session. There are songs that have been written in the past year and a half…it really helped me cope with feelings from past relationships and feelings of isolation related to the pandemic. A lot of the song writing happened after 12PM…12AM? After midnight! [laughter] During those times, one o’clock or two o’clock, I was writing my best material. I was like, “This is awesome, I love what I’m doing.” It just helped me get all of those feelings out, those highs and lows of relationships. Not even just romantic relationships. It’s just helped me cope with everything. It’s definitely a healing process putting all my feelings to words and those words to music. Those feelings now live somewhere else and it’s not bottled up anymore and I’m really happy I can just let go of all those negative feelings I had.
What made you decide to name the EP lows?
I had a really hard time trying to figure out a name because I didn’t know if I wanted it to just be like…bb. It really needs to tie in, I really wanted it to tie in, all four of the songs. I called it lows because again I found myself writing at my lowest points, one A.M. or two A.M. and I think it just really represents what those songs are about.
This is your debut as a solo artist, how is it different writing as a solo artist compared to putting music out as a band?
As a solo artist I find it a lot more difficult because in a band setting you can bounce off ideas all the time, being a solo artist you can send demos to friends and everything but ultimately you are making that final decision of what goes on the record, how things are played, the instrumentation. I was in charge of all of that. So it was really nerve racking but it was such a cool experience because I’ve never had to do something like this before. It was more difficult than easy, but I’m very happy that I had this experience because ultimately it made me a better songwriter and a better producer. I had to learn so many new things about this process.
What made you want to write a solo album?
I did have these collection of songs that really didn’t feel like it fit in to my other band, Skyeline. I knew that I wanted people to hear them. I knew they needed to live in a space that was separate from Skyeline. That was one of the main reasons why I did it but also…it’s my capstone project. It’s something I had to do to graduate so it’s really cool to have this opportunity to really put these songs in to production. I’m grateful.
So when you were working on this, did you have a team around you?
Yes! I did have people helping me. My friend Jack, who plays bass in Skyeline, he wrote the bass lines and played drums. I sent him a demo with some midi-track drums so he kind of replicated that and wrote the bass part. He really helped me in the studio, learning gear. Then Brandon, who’s the guitarist in Skyeline, mastered the tracks for me. So even though it is a solo piece of work, I still had my bandmates helping me. But they didn’t make the final decisions, I did [laughter]. My friend Hannah was the graphic designer that designed everything, then my friend Robin shot all the promo pictures. I honestly had a really supportive group around me and I think that’s one of the reasons why I’m excited for it to be out and I’m excited for people to hear it.
How has your creative process changed during 2020?
It’s been weird. Usually I’ll get together with people, play music, bounce off ideas. Now it’s you have these ideas at home, you have to make a quick demo and send it out. You can’t really be in the same room as people and that was one of the hardest things I had to deal with. But I do feel like I’ve gotten better at demo’ing stuff and forming the structures of songs by being alone.
When people listen to the EP, what is one thing you want them to take away?
Music is subjective. I just want them to feel something. If it’s happiness, if it’s sadness…as long as I evoke an emotion that’s the best thing I could ask for.
Where can people find you and your music?
All of my social medias are @bbmusicnj – you’ll find all of my pictures and music. I have a Linktree in my bio that has my website and all my information for everyone!
Responses may be adjusted for clarity and length.