China Bowls is special. Seriously special. Really, that’s all we should have to say and she would instantly receive millions of plays and worldwide tours BUT sadly that’s not the way it works, but really, she is! Think Hiatus Kaiyote merged with Little Dragon, Erykah Badu and a touch of Braxton Cook on a soulful day! Last year we had the pleasure of catching up with China and finding out more about this incredibly talented songstress who has been making a massive impact on the Southwest music scene, alongside festival season with the People’s Living Room.
Here’s the original interview to get an idea of what she does…oh, and whilst you’re reading you’ll come to realise that we also made China Bowls our Amplify Artist of the month for October 2016! Anyway, HERE IT IS!
So, after a year of live gigs and developing new music, it’s finally time for China to unleash her new chunk of soulful goodness and make our Winter Blues drift away! We are LOVING this new track at Wordplay Towers, and are seriously excited to see what’s next for the Bristol based singer / songwriter, so we caught up to find out a little more about her brand new single The Way and find out what’s been happening since we last spoke…
China, last time we spoke you were performing at Saffron Record’s 1st Birthday bash! What have you been up to?
I know that feels like so long ago ! We had the EP release last year and since then I have been gigging a lot, summer was a blur of festivals and then straight into getting ready to record these singles. Now that they’re recorded I’ve been writing a lot which is sooo nice to get back to.
Please tell us about the new single…
So it’s a song I wrote a while ago now , playing along to a drum loop I found on youtube. Since then it has grown a lot and the band on the recording really bring it to life, on this one the backing vocals and harmonies are really important because when I wrote it I already had the band in my head with the harmonies too, rather than starting with a solo song and then building those things on top – so it was quite different in that respect to anything I had written before.
In terms of the subject it’s basically about loosing people (in any of the many ways that that is possible) and with the inevitability of that, how we get to a place where absence is ok and learn to live with the gaps people leave in our lives.
What else is coming up for you? Is the single from a new album?!
No album yet but there will be another single coming sometime next year and then it will be thinking about all the new stuff that I’m writing at the moment and getting that recorded.
Who have you been listening to recently?
I can’t get enough of the new Jordan Rakei album, it’s definitely my favourite of his yet. Also I’ve just discovered Charlotte Dos Santos and also Native Dancer who are incredible.
When we last spoke you mentioned you’re keen to be collaborating with other artists, have you managed to do that yet ?
This year has been full of collaborations which has been amazing.
I’ve just started writing with a Bristol band called Snazzback and am going to be recording with them next year. I’ve been writing with Solomon O.B – and we’ve also all performed together – we all met through playing at The People’s Front Room (a stage that travels around the festivals) which is a really great place to meet new artists as you usually end up jamming in front of an audience straight away.
I also sang with Too Many T’s at Bestival and then joined them on afew of their tour dates which was super fun and very different to what I normally do. Ooh and I’ve been doing backing vocals for my friends Nepo x Temko – which is another totally different role, so lots and lots of different things which is great as it’s definitely pushing me as both a performer and a writer.
What’s your plans for Christmas?!
I have no idea! It’s usually a very chilled Christmas at home in Devon but it still feels too far away to comprehend.
It’s great when genuine, passionate and seriously talented musicians return to the fold, and with China Bowls it’s going to be great to see her evolve, alongside her Saffron Records family.
Without further a do, let’s let the music do the talking. Wordplay Magazine are proud to announce the release of China Bowl’s brand new single The Way. Enjoy!!
Song written by China Bowls
Vocals and Guitar: China Bowls
Drums: James Vine Bass: Dan Plimmer
Keys: Hal Sutherland
Guitar: Eli Jitsuto
Sax: Nick Robinson
Recorded by Gareth Bailey, Mixed by Johnzy, Mastered by Max Gilkes
Artwork by Lizzie Stone
The Way is available Now (from 24th November 2017) on all streaming and download platforms
Interview and words by James Kennaby (Vice beats)