"The second side of the album as a whole has been covered less which I think is a negative side effect of streaming services" We chat with Pearl Charles
Hey Pearl, how’s your day going?
My day has been absolutely lovely so far, thanks for asking!
And how has your 2021 started off?
2021 has been off to a much better start than 2020, that’s for sure, haha! I am really excited to finally have my album out in the world, so that’s been a really fun way to kick off the year!
So... where are you right now?
I am in the desert out near Joshua Tree, California.
Tell me one thing people don’t know about you.
I got kicked out of the drama program at my high school for smoking weed off-campus with a fellow student whose father was a famous country singer/songwriter. That is what ultimately set me on the path of playing in bands instead of pursuing my former passion which was musical theater.
You released Magic Mirror recently, what can you tell me about the record in two sentences?
Magic Mirror is a very introspective album about self-reflection and soul searching. Musically the album is very influenced by my favorite sounds of the 70s, from Fleetwood Mac to ABBA, and everything in between!
You’ve had some terrific reviews for the album, including “Magic Mirror is like a compendium of American music from the 1960s on...” how would you describe your sound?
Well, I definitely love that description and I feel like it’s fairly accurate in the sense that I do draw on all my favorite music from the 60s, 70s and beyond! I definitely explore an “American” sound, but I also like to think I bring in various other influences as well.
What was the first song that you wrote for the album?
I think the first song I completed for the album was 'What I Need', but I had started 'Don’t Feel Like Myself' even before that, but it took me longer to actually finish that one.
One of my favourite songs is ‘All The Way’, what’s the story to that song?
'All The Way' started out as a song about the feelings of hesitancy in a new relationship, but wanting to give your all to your significant other. At the time I was single and didn’t have a partner, but I met my boyfriend while I was working on this album and he helped me finish this song and tweak it to be more about our actual relationship, rather than one I had been imagining.
Which song is the one you’ve talked least about in interviews? And what would you like to say about it?
It’s funny you asked about 'All The Way', because I definitely think that one is getting less attention. The second side of the album as a whole has been covered less which I think is a negative side effect of streaming services. So I’d have to say either 'All The Wa'y or 'As Long As You’re Mine'. Similarly to 'All The Way', I wrote 'As Long As You’re Mine' before I actually had someone to sing it about, but I’d like to think that life imitates art in a way and you can manifest and call the energy that you want into your life through songwriting.
What’s the biggest difference between Magic Mirror and [previous album] Sleepless Dreamer?
For Magic Mirror we actually used my live touring band as the basis of the record, whereas on Sleepless Dreamer we used session players. Though those players were incredible in their own right, I think that we got closer to executing my vision on this record because the guys who played on it had been playing the songs out on the road for months and had spent countless hours locked in a van with me listening to the music I wanted to emulate on this album.
Pandemic permitting, what have you got planned for 2021?
We’d love to get back on the road whenever it’s safe, but if live shows don’t come back this year, we’ll definitely be filming a bunch of livestreams, writing and hopefully recording and releasing a new album or EP!
If you could recommend one artist to hear this week, who would it be?
Toni Brown from the band The Joy of Cooking, her solo albums are absolutely incredible.
What’s the question we should have asked you today but haven’t?
Wouldn’t you like to know? ;) Haha, just kidding, I’m really not sure! I think you asked some pretty solid ones!
Finally, how do you take your coffee?
Some people will be horrified to hear this I’m sure, but I love hazelnut flavored coffee with a little bit of half-and-half!
To find out more about Pearl you can visit her official website, check out what she's up to on Instagram and Twitter and buy her excellent record, Magic Mirror on Bandcamp.