An Interview With Singer-Songwriter and Producer, CHARLEE REMITZ!
“Pretty Genius” is the latest single from the musician, Charlee Remitz. It takes inspiration from the likes of Taylor Swift, Troye Sivan and G-Eazy.
Remitz is an award-winning independent singer-songwriter, mixer, and producer who has been has been circulating the indie airwaves since her breakout debut album, “Bright White Trims.” She takes modern pop and drenches it, believing everything fundamental to happiness lies below the surface. Compounding her efforts in 2016 she followed it up with EP Saints Until Fridays. Her sophomore LP, Sad Girl Music, dropped November 2018 and was a massive exploration of first love and, the more important, first heartbreak. Remitz has begun producing and mixing her own work. Her work has amassed over a million streams on Spotify, a New Music Friday playlist add, with three top 200 debuts on college radio, and multiple song placements in popular Bravo and E! TV network shows.
Check out Charlee’s Music Here- https://sym.ffm.to/charleeremitz_prettygenius
Learn more about Charlee Remitz in the following All Access interview-
Thank you for your time! So, what does a typical day look like for you lately?
Thanks for yours. I try my hardest to be productive every day, but I’m starting to realize working yourself into the ground isn’t productivity. You don’t have to be ridiculously worn out at the end of every day, checking things off your list, to be productive. Lately, I’ve been talking with friends about these immense pressures we place on ourselves to stay sprinting towards this invisible finish line where wealth, happiness, love, etc. exist. We all decide, without even saying it, that we don’t get to dip our hands into the pot until we get there. But there is no There. There is right now. And it’s okay to rest when you need to rest. And it’s okay to be happy and celebrate even if you’ve yet to reach your expectations.
Everything needs space and breath and trust and faith. Your body, your work, your loves, your crushes. When I put a song out, I try to give it the time it needs to do what it came here to do. I try to give it the space to grow without deciding, before it’s had a chance to blow up, that it’s never going to get any bigger.
Hard work—it’s important, but it’s not everything.
So, my days are never the same. Sometimes I work hard, sometimes I rest. And every single one of them is as important as the last.
Now that we are in the latter half of the year, how has 2019 treated you? What are some goals that you have had for yourself this year? How close are you to reaching them or did you already? What are you already looking forward to in 2020?
I’m really over goals. I’m over expectations. It’s hard to say, “I’m going to be signed by a label this year,” and still feel like everything I did was enough if that one thing didn’t happen.
The universe has a plan that, whether I like it or not, doesn’t much take into consideration what I think. The stars align for me even when I don’t think they are. So, I try not to reach for things. I try to allow them to come to me while I’m being true. Following my heart. Listening to it when it’s got something to say.
Growing up, how important was music in your life? Can you recall the moment when you decided that you wanted to be a musician? Was it an easy or difficult choice to make?
This is always a weird question for me. Music wasn’t my “Eureka!” moment. In fact, when I was in middle school, it was almost a menace. Cause for ridicule. It seems almost anything unique to a person when you’re in your youth is up for grabs by shitty school kids.
I always describe my music taste as “blue.” I got it from my dad. He liked sleepy music, because he was a depressed person. I also inherited that a bit. The depression, the self-loathing. I got attacked in school for liking songs that weren’t beaten silly on the radio, and because I already hated myself, as children of tattered homes tend to, the music was just one more thing I had to eventually identify as a unique trait and not another thing that made me uncool.
Everyone expected me to golf in college, funnily enough. I’d waste four years doing something I was good at but uninspired by, I’d waste three in law school, and, indubitably, somewhere along the way, I’d realize it wasn’t what I wanted to do and I’d take all my unique traits, all the debt, and walk away from it.
It seemed simple to me. College would always be there. The “right thing” would always be there. But my heart wouldn’t be beating as hard for my dream if I went and burnt myself out trying to be the girl society wants me to be.
Was there ever a time when you thought about doing something else? If you weren’t a musician today, what else could you see yourself doing? Would you be as fulfilled in life?
I’ve always been infatuated with tornadoes. I imagined myself chasing them for a time. In a way, I’m still doing that. The music industry is equally as unkind and definitely as unpredictable.
What has been the biggest surprise so far about making music your career? What has been an unexpected or welcome challenge to it all? What has been the best part about it all?
I already knew people could be evil. That was no surprise. But I didn’t know to expect every single person in the music industry to be evil. And that’s not me saying they all are, that’s me saying, if you want to stay protected, you have to expect them to be.
But I get to tell the truth. That’s what makes it worth it. I get to say what’s on my mind and the best part is that people listen.
Let’s talk about your newest single, “Pretty Genius.” What was the inspiration for this track? How would you say that it compares to anything else that you have put out?
“Pretty Genius” is a deep cut. I had a couple fans draw a parallel between it and my second EP, Saints Until Fridays, which hit without much impact, but the story-telling was some of my best.
“Pretty Genius” was inspired by superheroes. My ex-boyfriend took a lot of my power, but I also let him. I knowingly gave it away, mistaking the exchange of power for love. In a lot of ways, I spent 2018 and 2019 taking that power back, realizing it was much stronger than I had ever realized. Truly, it ties back to those unique traits I was bullied for in school. They’re not burdens, they’re superpowers. “Pretty Genius” was me realizing that.
Do you have plans to release more new music and a full collection of new songs soon?
I wrote and produced an album called Garden. Of seventeen songs, only one song has one other name in the credits. It’s all me and it’s a love letter to the 80s, a thank you note to my heart. Last year I said, “I need to feel all this, and I know it’s gonna hurt, but it’s gonna be worth it.”
And I let my heart break.
I didn’t try to put it back together too soon, or pretend like it was okay while I laid beneath a man I didn’t care for. I didn’t drink it into numbness or give it to someone else and ask them to fix it for me. I just let it hurt real bad for months. And I wrote an album in the process about blooming out of heartache.
And that’s what I did. I grew a garden. I bloomed.
Do you have any end of year tour dates scheduled?
I don’t, but I will be heading out on a mini tour next January—the We’re Just Girls West Coast Tour.
How do you think you have grown as a musician since you first started making music? What if anything has stayed the same about your music-making process?
I always told the truth. That didn’t change. But I didn’t take total ownership of it. That’s the biggest change for me. Owning how I feel.
How do you feel about social media? What do you think social media has done for your career?
Social media is as bad for the human heart as being in love with someone who doesn’t know what they want.
You have to learn how to be secure in yourself if you’re gonna be happy in life, and especially if you’re gonna spend any amount of your time on social media.
If you look happy on social media but you hurt everywhere else, get off social media. Nobody can fix that hurt for you. Not a few thousand likes, not a good comment to follower ratio, and certainly not a blue checkmark next to your name.
I always say, a relationship is not where you find yourself. Social media is not where you find yourself.
What musicians would you absolutely still love to work with in the future?
I’d die happily if John Mayer wanted to remake “Stop This Train” with me.
If you could design your dream music video right now, what would it look like?
It would look like an 80s teen rom-com. A YA book adapted to screen specifically for Netflix. Specifically to be loved and adored just because it’s two hours or two minutes of the perfect romance and the perfect misadventure.
Where would you love to hear a song of yours played?
I’d love to grace pop radio with some truth. I’m getting kinda tired of the same artists, the same songs, the same stories, the same formulas that worked, the same lack of courage and the same admissions of greed.
At the end of the day, what do you hope people take away from your music?
Sadness is fundamental to happiness. I hope that’s what they take away.