Welcome to The Drop, Refinery29's new home for exclusive music video premieres. We want to shine the spotlight on women artists whose music inspires, excites, and (literally) moves us. This is where we'll champion their voices.
If Charli XCX and Camila Cabello can vouch for you, then you know you're doing something right. At just 22 years old, Sasha Sloan has worked with some of the can't-miss artists of 2018, but this year is actually all about branching out on her own. In 2017, she released singles "Runaway" and "Ready Yet," but her most recent work is "Fall" and "Normal." Now, the former is coming in hot with its own music video, a first for Sloan, but there's certainly plenty more where it came from.
Ahead, we spoke to the writer and singer about what it was like to start her career with such powerful female influences, and how she's translating that into her own success.
You've worked with a lot of great artists, was it nerve-wracking to branch out on your own or was it a long time coming?
"I think it was a mixture of both. It was definitely nerve-wracking because it was the first time I was really putting myself out there. Definitely had some anxiety about what people would say, think, etc. It was also a long time coming - even though I was writing for other people I've always felt like an artist."
What did you learn from working with other powerful female artist like Camila Cabello and Charli XCX?
"I've learned so much from working with powerful females such as Charli and Camila. The two of them are insanely talented and they're both so dedicated to who they are and what they stand for. I've been so lucky to be around them and see their process in the studio. Both girls are also phenomenal performers and their confidence is something I've admired before I even knew them. PS. Charli and Camila are also just generally the shit."
What does the word "normal" mean to you, especially in the context of this song?
"In the context of this song I guess the word 'normal' means invisible. I wrote this song when I was in a bad place and partying non stop to try and cover up how I really felt. I just wanted to blend into the crowd and forget myself every night."
How does the video reflect that?
"The video is a little different - I wanted to focus on showing the real me. That includes thrift shopping, going to McDonald's, generally being a nerd, etc."
Was the video shot over one day or was it spread out? What was the experience like?
"The video was all shot in one day. It was my first time shooting one and I'm a little camera shy so I was nervous but luckily I had an amazing director, David O'Donohue, who made me feel totally comfortable. Once I loosened up it was really fun although I did have to ride a bike around Venice for two hours so my legs were on fire by the end."
What are you hoping the video and song makes listeners feel?
"I hope the video and song makes listeners feel like they're not alone and that it's totally okay to feel like a weirdo. It's kind of an anthem for introverts so even if one person out there relates to it I'll be so happy."
Who are you singing to when you sing your music? Who do you hope is listening? Or does it depend on the song?
"I think I'm usually singing to myself. It does depend on the song, but when I write my music I'm usually just putting my inner monologue on paper. I always just write what I'm feeling and hope someone out there can relate."
What's next for you?
"I'm currently on a national tour opening for Joywave which wraps in a week. I have two new songs coming in March, they will complete my first EP. After tour I'm headed back to LA to write for myself. Also have a couple festivals lined up for this year!"