YNES‘ is the Coventry based singer/songwriter. We here at The Songbird HQ are big fans of her releases to date “Pretty Sure”, “Better Job” and “Used To Be” and we were thrilled to catch up with the singer recently for a little chat.
Hey, Ynes firstly thank you so much for taking some time out of your busy schedule to talk to us. lets go!
1) So, we see that you have 3 tour dates coming up in June, you must be so excited to be able to gig again. How does it make you feel being on stage and being able to perform in front of fans who are there just to see you?
It’s wild! I started releasing music around 6 months before COVID hit, so the momentum was only really picking up just before we went into lockdown. To come out of the other side of things having built up an audience is something I’m so grateful for and SO ready to make the most out of!
2) Your image is so colourful and expressive, have you always loved experimenting with fashion and different styles?
I think so! As a kid I’d sometimes have hand-me-downs so I think that’s where my enthusiasm for rooting through weird pieces started haha! As a teenager I would snoop around second-hand shops and while I can understand it’s not everyone’s preference, it’s so satisfying finding the wackiest pieces and figuring out how to style them together – it’s definitely a hobby!
3) Your first track ‘Pretty Sure’ was released August 2019, when that was first released did you expect to be where you are now?
I don’t think so, but I’m so grateful! I recorded a few tracks in the same session – so I did have a ‘plan’ to have a few releases and try my best at it all, but I’m so grateful for all the people I’ve met (such as yourselves) over the past couple of years as it’s really made me feel like I’m part of an indie community.
4) Are any of your family musical and what did your family have you listening to when you were growing up?
Not really! We kinda joke because no one in my family knows where I got it from, but I was lucky enough to have basic guitar lessons as a kid, which then led onto learning songs I knew and loved and eventually writing my own. My dad would play anything from Aerosmith to The KLF to Avril Lavigne so I don’t think there was any theme, but I’ve always been obsessed with music. I remember the first time I heard Head On (Jesus and Mary Chain) as a kid, I felt it so hard that he asked me if I was okay haha! Also I had an obsession with Madonna so my nan bought me her tour tape on VHS.
5) What female artists and bands have inspired you over the years?
Alanis Morrisette x100000. An actual powerhouse. From having a ‘one hit wonder’ in the Canadian charts as a teenager to completely reinventing her image, to binning her abusive manager, to now being an icon who’s music has aged incredibly. An actual icon. Also so so many women within the industry who fight for their art.
6) What music have you been listening to most recently?
I always try to take time to listen to other independent artists releases, I’ve been loving Ace Ambrose’s new single Coming of Age. I’ve recently been loving Peach PRC, The Muslims, carolesdaughter, and Souls of Mischief. So a bit of everything.
7) You’re playing a couple of festivals this year, what would be your dream venue to play anywhere in the world?
I love the music scene here to be honest – it’s so so passionate. Playing the Royal Albert Hall is THE absolute dream.
8) If you weren’t able to be a singer, what job would you be doing?
I’d love to do something in fashion, styling maybe? I’m not sure if dream jobs have back-ups but that’s a solid plan B.
9) If you could collaborate with any artist on a track, who would it be?
Collaborating with GIRLI on our remix of Pretty Sure was insane but, there are so many amazing indie artists I’d love to collaborate with – Kate Nash, Zuzu, Nova Twins, Baby Queen, AHH. So many amazing artists….and for love and traditions sake, I have to say Aerosmith!
10) Your actual name is Kira, where did the name YNES come from?
Inez is my middle name! @inezmusic was taken on Instagram and I wanted to be consistent over socials, I SO wish there was a more interesting back story!! I loved the idea of creating a name that was a little separate from my own, as it kinda gave me the freedom to be more expressive.
11) Your lyrics are so powerful, do you set out to get a message across or do ideas just come to you randomly?
To be honest, my lyrics mainly draw from thoughts/phrases I get stuck in my head while I’m having conversations with people. Like, with Pretty Sure I remember talking to a friend and saying something along the lines of “I’m pretty sure she’s not the one in the wrong here, he is” – and it was kinda born from that. I’m working on a new demo called “How am I the d***head?” and that was a similar story. Having that moment of clarification whilst thinking about life and basing the song around that really!
12) Lastly, what can the fans look forward to from you in the next year?
Gigs (fingers crossed) and new releases! I’m hoping to really keep it up in terms of social media content – although it’s hard with the world reopening but there’s a community on here that I’ve really come to love, more than I hate social media. I’m super excited for the new releases because I feel like I’m more confident within myself as an artist now, so I’m SO ready to embrace it haha!!
To keep up to date with all things Ynes, new releases and tour dates etc, make sure you’re following her on her socials.
Finally, we’d like to say a massive thank you to Ynes for taking time out of her busy schedule and for Talking to The Songbird, big love xx
Interview with Ynes by Erin Power