Tropical pop singer HIRIE's third album, Dreamer, is a sonic journey base-lined by islad beats that celebrate the bold, joyful, and even messy impulses that drive the female experience.
This album marks the first time frontwoman/vocalist Trish Jetton has collaborated with other songwriters. The body of work covers a multitude of topics and themes like self-care, the struggle of dealing with addiction and indulgence, and the "wild woman archetype."
Popdust was able to chat with Jetton about the album and how a present from a fan inspired Dreamer.
I love how vibrant yet simplistic the video is for your song "She Go" and how it features many badass women and beautiful tropical scenes. What was the conception process like?
So for that song, it's interesting because there are so many different messages in it, so I left it open to interpretation. But you know the hook in itself, "she go." It's a term we use a lot in Hawaii; it's like, say, if the waves are pumping, you know the waves are going off. Somebody might be like, "Oh, she go." Like Mother Nature, she go, like she's getting it right now. Or like if there's a beautiful you know girl walking on the street, and she's just totally owning it and paying no mind to anyone: She go. It's an endearing term you see, whether it's about... a human being or just nature in general.
And then the song itself [goes], "Put down the gun," which is meant to mean, "Put your ego down." I co-wrote that song with a couple of guys from The Drive. At one point in the day, we were discussing the gun violence that was going on around the time we wrote the song. I believe there was a mall shooting. So it just blurted out of me like, "Put down the gun, you know, be sensible." Let's cut the drama and let's get it. So when I did the video, I didn't want something that felt egotistical. I just wanted to show or highlight women that were just badass.
I didn't want anything that seemed like we were trying too hard production-wise. We kept everything low-key and minimal. The director, producer, videographer Tim Slusarczyk, he was just so humble. He did everything himself with one camera, one lens, and we got it all done pretty quickly. We wanted to keep it organic.
HIRIE - She Go (OFFICIAL VIDEO) www.youtube.com
As for "I'm Messed Up," it's evident in the lyrics and live performance what the song is about, but how does it fit into the album? What are some of the elements and themes that you hope people pick up on in the project?
I think we introduced some elements that we haven't done before. "I'm Messed Up" is the only song with a mariachi band in it, for example. In others, we added in violins and were able to tie that into songs like, "Message in a Bottle" and "Frida Kahlo." I think, though, when it comes to authenticity, "Messed Up" was one of the easiest to write. There was just so much; it was just so close to home, and I probably could've easily written ten verses. I think the way that it ties into the album is just the honesty and authenticity in the lyrics and the emotion behind it all.
So it's safe to say that that authenticity is consistent throughout the album?
I think that with this album, I allowed myself to express almost everything that I feel...I'm a proud bipolar person, and I go through swings of depression and anxiety and then epic bliss. On this album, I did collaborate with songwriters, and I felt like they helped me convey the emotions I was feeling in a way that I think people will be able to understand. I was guided, and that helped me communicate more clearly. I'm a very metaphorical person, and when I write sometimes, I'm almost too poetic. They'd be like, "Hey, I don't think everybody knows that word or understands that phrase. Maybe we can find something else or use something different." Overall, it was cool to write about all of the highs and lows of the human experience.
I think the last track on Dreamer, "Stay Wild" was one of the songs that spoke to me the most.
Ironically enough, I almost a named the album Stay Wild! That tune kind of started the creation of this album. One of my fans gave me this book called Women Who Run With Wolves, and it's a book about the wild women archetype and how throughout history and different cultures, women have been suppressed and made to believe that if you're wild or eccentric, [then] you're mad, or crazy, and you deserve to die or don't deserve a quality life. You can see the unfairness between male and female promiscuity and how we judge genders. When I read the book, things started flowing out of me, and I felt all of these different emotions that led me to write Dreamer in the way that I did. In the book, I was reading that it was okay to feel these things that other people avoid. "Stay Wild" has a folklore vibe to it, and it's based on all of these women. I'm so proud of those lyrics, and that's one of the few songs that I wrote [solo] on the album. It's the least mainstream in a sense, but it's last because it's the one I love the most.
In the end, why did you end up naming the album Dreamer?
In the book, I read a passage that talked about how there are two types of spiritual people. There is the Dreamer, and there is the Seer. The Seer can see your aura and see the future right in front of them. They're the kind of people that can anticipate the future. For The Dreamer, for example, the Native Americans would ask them a question, or they'll ask themselves a question and have a dream or lucid dream that they would then interpret. I started to think about how my dreams are super lucid and how in the past I'd write them down and understand them too. It came to a point where I was like, "Okay Trish, what is the strongest, most important message? What are you going to call this album?" I woke up the next morning, and literally, the first word that came to mind was "dreamer."
I didn't even know why! It didn't occur to me what it meant to me, so I wrote it down on a memo on my phone and forgot about it. Later that day, one of my band members was trying to quit. He was one of my oldest band members, and he was saying, "I can't do this anymore. We're not making money, and we're struggling. I'm ready to stop doing it." I was like, 'I can feel that something is right around the corner. Don't worry about it.' He kept on saying how it's just a dream, and all we are are dreamers, and I had this, like, Keanu Reeves 'a ha' moment. I'm supposed to be a dreamer. And that is what we are. He just said it in such a kind of a negative way at the moment; I realized that it wasn't negative. It is what we are. We are dreamers, and we have to keep believing.
Be sure to check out HIRIE's latest album Dreamer below and be sure to catch her on tour!
HIRIE will embark on a headline U.S. tour starting October 13th in Huntington Beach, CA and stopping in cities like Orlando, Washington D.C., Seattle, San Diego, and more.
October 13 – Huntington Beach, CA @ On The Water Fest 2019
October 18 – Corpus Christi, TX @ House of Rock
October 23 – Orlando, FL @ The Abbey
October 24 – Stuart, FL @ Terra Fermata
October 25 – Melbourne, FL @ Florida Institute of Tech
October 26 – Jacksonville Beach FL @ Surfer the Bar
October 27 – Greensboro, NC @ Blind Tiger
October 29 – Virginia Beach, CA @ Elevation 27
October 30 – Washington, DC @ Union Stage
November 1 – Brooklyn, NY @ Knitting Factory
November 3 – Somerville, MA @ ONCE Ballroom
November 6 – Detroit, MI @ El Club
November 9 – St. Louis, MO @ Blueberry Hill
November 10 – Omaha, NE @ Slowdown (Front Room)
November 14 – Garden City, ID @ Visual Arts Collective
November 15 – Spokane, WA @ The Big Dipper
November 16 – Seattle, WA @ The Crocodile
November 17 – Portland, OR @ Holocene
November 20 – Sacramento, CA @ Holy Diver
November 21 – Santa Cruz, CA @ The Catalyst
November 23 – San Diego CA @ The Observatory