[Photo by Brandon C. Long]
Hazel English crafts those songs that just glide out of the speakers. Her weightless guitars and breathless vocals have allowed her to solidify her distinct style of dream pop, despite only having a five-song EP out. From collaborating with fellow Bay Area cutie Day Wave to earning the likes of Noisey and Stereogum, the dreamy Aussie babe seems to have the world in her hands this year. I got to talk with Hazel English (now working out of the Bay) ahead of her upcoming tour to learn more about her 12,000-mile move, and all of her possible future artistic endeavors.
AK: What spurred your move from Australia to California and why? How is life different between the two?
HE: I moved to California a few years ago as part of a study abroad program. I didn’t know anybody and I got involved in the music scene because it was an easy way to make friends, and it was a really open and accepting environment. The move felt like a very natural progression for me, though there were definitely a lot of challenges. When I lived in Australia, music was more of a hobby to me, but when I moved to the U.S. I decided to put a lot more time and energy behind it and give it my all.
AK: I’d love to hear more about the collaboration with Day Wave on your EP, Never Going Home, and how that affected the EP?
HE: In 2015 I met Jackson at the book shop I work at—he had just moved back to the Bay and was working on Day Wave. We talked about music and decided to try and collaborate on something. After we finished the first song, “Never Going Home,” we both [realized] we had a good thing going, so we just kept recording, and soon enough, there were enough songs for an EP.
AK: Could you talk about the Bay Area music scene? Do you think it’s diverse, or that it could improve for women, LGBT+, and other acts?
HE: I’ve found the Bay Area music scene to be really diverse and inclusive to every kind of person, which is one of the things that drew me in. There’s no sense of competitiveness because we know that by supporting each other, we all win.
AK: I read that you fluctuated between being a musician and an author. Would you ever release any writing beyond lyrics?
HE: Perhaps in the future. I’m focusing mainly on songwriting at the moment.
AK: What’s coming up in 2017?
HE: Going to be focusing on writing new music and trying new things with that. I think we will be doing a fair amount of touring, as well—hopefully to some new places!
Hazel English is kicking off her stateside Never Going Home Tour here in Seattle on February 19th at The Vera Project. Scoop tickets here!
ANNA KAPLAN | Melbz | KXSU Music Reporter