INTERVIEW: Betta Lemme
By: Maria Kornacki
First of all, congrats on your single, “Bambola”, which has over 50 million views on YouTube. Not to mention, it peaked on the charts at #1 in Israel, #4 and is certified gold in Italy, and landed at #50 Worldwide. Your recent single, “Give It” is also getting well-deserved views. You can be considered a global sensation now with the success of your songs and videos.
If you’re trying to make me blush, it worked.
HEM: What was it like to have your first ever live performance be on one of Italy’s largest national TV programs, Che Tempo Che Fa?
Betta Lemme: I had absolutely no idea what I was getting myself into and I think during most of the performance, I confused my heart with the actual kick drum of the track. Teething in public was a thrill.
HEM: Your latest single, “Kick The Door” has a noticeable musical shift in its sound. What inspired you to write such an empowering anthem?
BL: “KTD” was written right a couple days after "Bambola." I wasn’t my best self, couldn’t make sense of things and this song happened to come out. To be honest when it was finished, I felt uncomfortable at the thought of releasing it... it felt like a beast I wasn’t strong enough to own. The producer and friend I was working with loved it from the start but I really felt like it didn’t match my personality. Maybe it’ll sound corny, but during the one Yyar of not releasing music, I learned to stand my ground and what I wanted to fight for and that time was the time I needed to finally feel like I could hold the leash and call this song my own.
HEM: The visuals for “Kick The Door” have been described as cinematic. I also read that you pictured a detailed concept in your mind. Are there any films you seem to draw inspiration from?
BL: The song is incredibly cinematic. I describe all my songs as scenes or love child’s between two artists. This song specifically felt like the ultimate Quentin Tarantino fight scene. I don’t draw inspirations from films exactly, but rather imagine my own films as if I was collaborating with a director or an artist. If I can’t imagine a scene - the song isn’t for me.
HEM: You mainly sing in French and Italian, but several of your songs (I.e.“Give It”) include English lyrics. What artists in America inspire your songwriting/style?
BL: I hope this doesn’t come across as arrogant but there haven’t really been many American songwriters or styles that I’ve gravitated to that inspire my songwriting /style. I think what inspires me the most isn’t the songwriting but rather the individuals themselves. Ex: Barbara Streisand, Burt Bacharach, Missy Elliott, and Gwen Stefani.
HEM: Language seems to play an important role in your songs. How does your passion for music reflect your ability to connect with people through language?
BL: Language plays an important role with connecting to a wider audience, however I can’t stress enough that melody is the driving force behind reaching the most people, regardless of language. Growing up and hearing songs from artists like Stromae, Claudio Villa, Mina Mazzini, Piaf, Dalida singing in Arabic or even Jobin- I didn’t always know the words they were saying but I could feel it just by the melody. That’s probably one of my favorite feelings in the world.
HEM: What are you looking for in 2019 as far as your music career goes? Any exciting events and/or performances coming up?
BL: There are some really fun and unique songs i’m excited to share with you. I haven’t yet played my own show yet or even a set - so maybe end of 2019? I’ll be ready to step foot in front of a crowd soon. Hopefully the only thing people throw at me will be glitter.