One of the most exciting singer-songwriters of the moment, we can’t wait to see Phoebe Bridgers headline the BBC Sounds Stage in July.
She’s been nominated for four Grammys, and worked with everyone from The National to Taylor Swift. But here’s the 5 Things You DIDN’T Know About Phoebe Bridgers.
1. Her song ‘Punisher’ is about Elliott Smith
The title track from Phoebe’s acclaimed 2020 album ‘Punisher’ is about her hero Elliott Smith. A ‘Punisher’ is a tongue-in-cheek term musicians use to refer to overzealous fans, and the song’s lyrics explore what Phoebe would say if she could have a conversation with him. “What if I told you I feel like I know you, but we never met?”, she asks.
“I wrote a song about how, if Elliott Smith were alive, I probably wouldn’t have been the most fun person for him to talk to,” Phoebe told the New Yorker. “I’m a superfan, and I know way too much about his music. So I wrote that as if I were the punisher.”
2. She appeared on true crime podcast My Favourite Murder
Phoebe’s a fan of all things dark and creepy, hence her famous skeleton onesie and the ghosts that feature on both her album covers. She listed true crime podcast My Favourite Murder as one of the influences for ‘Punisher’. “It feels like you’re listening to two friends talk about something they’re morbidly fascinated with,” she told Pitchfork.
So it’s no surprise then that Phoebe featured as a guest on the podcast in 2021, discussing a murder that occurred in her own hometown of Pasadena, California.
3. She plays in two bands
Alongside her solo career, Phoebe plays in the band boygenius with fellow indie singer-songwriters Julien Baker and Lucy Dacus. They released their self-produced debut EP in 2018.
She also performs alongside Bright Eyes frontman Conor Oberst under the name Better Oblivion Community Center. The two have performed together since 2017, and their eponymous EP dropped at the start of 2019.
Before going solo, she also played bass in the band Sloppy Jane.
4. The video for ‘Savior Complex’ was directed by Fleabag’s Phoebe Waller-Bridge
Phoebe’s also cited cult BBC show Fleabag as an influence on ‘Punisher’, saying it affected her very deeply. So she was over the moon when she teamed up with Fleabag star and creator Phoebe Waller-Bridge for her video for ‘Savior Complex’. The video was shot here in Britain, and stars Irish actor Paul Mescal of Normal People fame.
“Phoebe Waller-Bridge is an angel, and I hope that we get to get married so that we have the exact same name,” she joked in the behind the scenes video.
5. She runs her own record label
At just 27, Phoebe’s already building her own indie empire. She set up her own label, Saddest Factory, in 2020. It’s an imprint of Dead Oceans, the label she herself is signed to. The name comes from a mispronunciation of the word ‘satisfactory’. Acts on the label include electro pop band Muna (Phoebe featured on their hit track ‘Silk Chiffon’) as well as Phoebe’s old band, Sloppy Jane.
Phoebe Bridgers will play cinch presents Latitude 2022 alongside headliners Lewis Capaldi, Foals and Snow Patrol! It takes place on 21st-24th July in Henham Park. Tickets are on sale now.