Poppy: “Pop Music Is Dead, Everybody That’s Out Is Saying The Exact Same Noise” (BreatheHeavy Interview)

Don’t let the sweet voice fool you –– Poppy is one of the most polarizing, outspoken pop stars out right now.

Poppy first made a splash with a series of bizarre videos on YouTube where, through the eyes of a computer, talks to mannequins and sings about the inevitable implosion of the human race. The machines will survive the worldwide web apocalypse and succeed people. Great! This curious and probably true point of view bottled up in a pop singer was co-created alongside a man named Titanic Sinclair.

Titanic remains a controversial figure in the world of Poppy, who’s currently signed to Diplo’s label, Mad Decent, because fans are under the impression he has some kind of gripping mind control over the complex crooning creature, but after my interview with Poppy, in support of her upcoming tour kicking off January 31st – click here for tickets, it’s evident she’s very much aware, and very much calling the shots.

Hey Poppy, thanks for agreeing to a chat. How are you doing? 

I’m good. I’ve been in the studio a lot working on my next album and practicing for my tour, rehearsals.

How’re the rehearsals going?

Really great. It’s a new show. Everything is new so there’s a lot to be excited about.

Do you find being on the road grueling? Invigorating?

I think it’s one of the most exciting parts because I get to see all of my fans and the people that watch my videos online. We get to all be together in one room. I get to see everyone.

What’s interesting is that “Poppy,” in some capacity, is a concept. Do you prefer to have people watching you via the Internet or in person?

I don’t have a preference. They’re both the same to me. As long as people are excited to be there.

Is there a song in particular you’re looking forward to performing the most?

I really like performing ‘X’ and ‘Am I A Girl?’

Damn that’s crazy you’re already readying a new album! Am I A Girl? debuted only a few months ago. Do you feel pressure to constantly have to release new music?

I just keep making things. I just don’t want to be boring… When you are constantly creating things it’s not boring. It also makes my fans very happy.

Boredom is one of the leading causes of death.

I agree.

Especially if you’re a creator, it’s probably one of the most exciting aspects of your career.

I just wish immediately when I’m done working on a project I could put it out, but there’s always a little bit of time in between that.

Yeah, after you create a new song and then some time passes… your perception of it changes, right?



Sometimes, but usually during that time when we’re in between –– I’ve already worked on and created another body of work. This new project I’m working on is just about finished. We’ll have to wait a little while before that comes out, and I’ll probably be already working on the next one.

Am I A Girl? is a great guilty pop pleasure record. Pop music is so important, and I feel like in 2018/2019 it’s taken a back seat. I’m excited for a resurgence. Do you kind of sense that pop music is making more of a comeback than in recent years?

I think pop music is dead right now, actually. It’s the most boring that it’s ever been. No one is taking chances. Everybody is saying the exact same thing that we already know, and I just pray that one day we can all be enlightened by some singer that will come along and give us some insight on the world. I feel like right now everybody that’s out is saying the exact same noise.

Your music… it often portrays themes of fame and fortune.

I think everybody wants to be famous, and everybody wants to be Poppy. I think that having money is nice, but also it’s important in life to know what it’s like to not have money, to not have people paying attention. And then when you do have a lot of people paying attention to you and you do have a lot of money you know how to handle it. You only know how to deal with it when you’ve had nothing.

It’s that balance.

You have to understand both sides. The dark and the light. The rich and the poor. The sad and the happy. Because one without the other… it’s just an uneven scale.

We always tend to think the grass is greener. In the future I’ll make more money, I’ll be more famous. Then you get there and it’s still not enough. Do you find yourself in that predicament?

Every step is important. It takes a lot of bricks to build a house and even more to build a mansion, and every brick is important.

As I was preparing for this interview… I was watching a bunch of your interviews. In your sit-down on The Zach Sang Show, they asked you about having sex and being a virgin, and I was horrified. I immediately looked at your facial expression to see how you’d react, and I thought you totally kept it together. Do you ever feel like the media crosses a line? Or is everything fair game?

I can answer any question. I love The Zach Sang Show and this isn’t directed at them in particular, but I feel that the media always wants to know more and ‘uncover more.’ Sometimes they don’t need to uncover anything. I think we need to accept the art at face value for what it is. I think that’s their job to go deeper, but I think the art should also be enjoyed for what it is as well.

What is that you want people to take away from your music?

I just want them to be inspired to create for themselves because the world is a lot more beautiful when everybody is creating something that didn’t exist before. I think that’s what humans should focus on.

I think it’s easy for people to fall into a trap of how hard or bad the world can be. Your music gives listeners a little escape.

I want the listener to feel like they have somewhere to go and not remind them of all of the ruckus that’s happening in the world. I think everybody is aware of what’s going on, but every where you turn doesn’t need to be a reminder of that. If I can be that place that they go where they feel happy, like they can get away from all of that in their life, I think that’s a good thing.

What do you consider being in successful in music means?

Getting to do this for a very long time.

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