Welcome to The Drop, Refinery29's home for 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.
It started with a vision: a horse and a latex bodysuit. Rainsford knew the music video before she even knew the song. She’s been releasing music since 2016, including the 2018 EP Emotional Support Animal, but hadn’t yet found the right song for the coveted visual until she and frequent collaborator producer Cameron Hale sat down together and wrote what Rainsford says was 20 songs in just a few months. “2 Cents” ended up being the perfect fit for the music video, directed by Dana Boulos and premiering exclusively on Refinery29.
That songwriting marathon was a smart move on her part, since now she, like the rest of us, is quarantined for an indefinite amount of time until the world gets back on its feed following the coronavirus pandemic — although we don't all get to quarantine with Margaret Qualley. Luckily, she planned enough ahead that she can release a new single every month for the next six months to get us through a time when most other forms of entertainment are on hold. “2 Cents,” which drops the same day as its video, is the first quarantine treat.
The making of the “2 Cents” music takes us back to a time before the pandemic, although wearing a latex bodysuit may have been prescient. Other than that, though, the video is the perfect escape. As Rainsford laments the shifting nature of a relationship, we’re soothed by gently blowing fields and her expertly-applied red lip, masking the fact that the actual process of filming the video was, well, complicated.
Refinery29: What is “2 Cents” about?
Rainsford: “The song is about being in a relationship that I was figuring out wasn't exactly what I was hoping it to be.”
Is it weird to be working on a song about feelings you had a while ago?
“It's strange having that opportunity to self reflect in such a specific way. Things that felt so important in that moment, I just don't give a fuck about anymore. But sometimes songs will work in a way where they take on new meanings.”
The music video has such specific visuals. How did you land on those?
“I had been wanting to make a music video of just me riding a horse through a beautiful landscape in a latex bodysuit for a while. Finding the horse was the hardest part. I took some screenshots of like weird looking horses and posted on my Instagram. I was like, Hey, does anybody in LA have a horse? [The stable where we found a horse] is gorgeous. We didn't have to drag the horse anywhere. We were able to ride it from the stable to all these beautiful hills that I never even knew were so nearby. The bodysuit, we just honestly went to a sex shop.”
What was filming it like?
“The shoot was super uncomfortable. The suit looks sick, but it's a huge pain to wear. You have to put baby powder all over your body. I was like, okay, I'm just not going to drink water or pee all day because taking this thing off is a huge pain. I held my pee for eight hours, was riding a horse the whole time, there was horse hair stuck to me. By the end of the day, I was definitely grumpy. But it turned out great.”
Has quarantine been helpful for you creatively or the opposite?
“I've definitely found opportunities to be creative, but in ways that I don't typically allow myself time for. I've been painting a lot. I've been writing some on my own and like playing guitar more than I normally do. My sister [Margaret Qualley] and I both dance, so we've been doing Ryan Heffington's classes up on our roof. It feels like a psychotic summer camp, in a way.”