I know saying someone's "in a class of their own" is an awful cliche but, when you're talking about Lorde, it's a rare case where such a cliche is truly accurate. As a child she was revealed to be exceptional but exceptional children don't always do that well in the world. I'm much more impressed by the wisdom exhibited in what she says now, how she's navigating the system and how she looks fame in the face without shrinking despite claiming to be shy. Though she's still quite young, she speaks with a clarity and insight that few attain at any age.
Lorde's starting to face some flack from lesser minds. But I don't want to defend her so much as focus on some awesome things she's said.
Lorde - Royals
When asked if she was a feminist:
“Absolutely. Wholeheartedly...I think women who say, ‘No, I’m not a feminist — I love men,’ I think that is just… You don’t know what it means. You think it means that, ‘I don’t shave under my arms, I burn my bras. Fuck men!’ How could you be so uneducated, and so unwilling to learn about something which is so important to you?”
On being outspoken:
"You're never going to appeal to everyone. You might as well have some sort of belief system."
Regarding her music being used in advertisements:
"I'm quite careful about product advertisements. I'd have to have some kind of personal affiliation with the product which is, you know, rare for me. If something was unhealthy or not promoting a good body image, I'd take it into consideration."
On the media pitting female pop stars against each other:
"It just seems so strange to me, the way the media pits girls against each other to make sure there's always some battle like that going on...If one male singer was to make any kind of comment about another, it wouldn't be a 'cat fight'."
"It's incredibly unsubtle: you can hear people trying to get their headline, and I'm getting good at saying, 'I don't know, what do you think?' and they just sort of flounder. Nobody asks me about what male musicians I think about; I only ever get asked about females."
Regarding people's obsession with her youth:
"I thought that it would be a thing when they first heard about me, and then it would stop being a thing, but no...I've been in some situations where people have treated me like a fascinating toy. You know, it's just like an interesting kind of fun thing to have a play with. It's very weird for me."
On her early attempts to remain a bit mysterious Lorde stated:
"My first musical love is electronic music, and what I love about that genre is that it's pretty much faceless. Pop is dominated by people being really pretty and flawless and having great legs, and I was like, 'Fuck that.' Even now, people see me on Twitter and are like, 'Your eyes are too far apart.' It just seems like the stupidest grounds to make someone feel bad. I couldn't care less."
Regarding her embrace of pop music
“I didn’t expect to be in this world but I think it’s kind of cool. For a long time pop has been this laughable, shameful thing. But it’s actually gratifying and fun and can unite populations, which I think is incredibly powerful. So hopefully I am showing that pop can be taken seriously.”
On why she's not the anti-Miley Cyrus:
“That is definitely an older person’s reaction to my songs...I would absolutely take my clothes off if I wanted to and that would be my choice and I would be empowered by it.”
I'm realizing there's one individual worth comparing. Currently Jennifer Lawrence is killing it with her off-the-cuff public statements. Very different style but both women are taking their own paths and reminding us of what we lose when putting most of our energy into the words of men.
Hypebot Senior Contributor Clyde Smith (Twitter/Facebook) is building a writing hub at Flux Research. To suggest topics about music tech, DIY music biz or music marketing for Hypebot, contact: clyde(at)fluxresearch(dot)com.