Artist Feature: Beabadoobee

I’ll get straight to the point: as a dyslexic, looking into this artist was intimidating. It took me about a week to finally get to grip with the order of those syllables. But, now I know it, I think I’m going to keep this name in my Spotify playlists for a long time.

Beabadoobee, otherwise known as Bea Kristi, is an 18-year-old singer/songwriter born in Manila in the Philippines but bred in London. Her music is like sinking into a bath of warm honey: it’s soothing and velvety to the touch, then sticks with you for days to come. Her voice is soft and her aesthetic is rough but warm. It’s comfortable to listen to.

A 17-year-old Bea Kristi first picked up a guitar when her father brought home a second-hand instrument. She’d played the violin for 7 years before, giving her a musical platform to stand on, yet wrote her first ever song, the chill love-song ‘Coffee’, which blew up with 300,000 YouTube views on a fan uploaded video before she knew it existed.  Only one year later, she has released two albums and four EPs, and opened for The 1975.

When I was 15, during my emo phase, The 1975 was all I’d listen to. Next thing you know, I’m opening up one of their gigs. A few days before that gig I was at his house—I was in his toilet, thinking, This is so weird, don’t freak out, don’t freak out.”

Her inspirations vary from Daniel Johnston, The Mouldy Peaches and Pavement to Kimya Dawson, the Juno Soundtrack, and a little of her mum’s OPM music – old Filipino music.

These can be heard in her latest album, Loveworm, which was released in April of this year. The accompanying music video only just came out on YouTube,  delving a little deeper into the story behind the album: a rough patch between Bea and her boyfriend, Soren. It contains the satisfyingly messy aesthetic I have come to look forward to in all of Beabadoobee’s work. An example of this untidy elegance being her name: “[Beabadoobee] was the most random thing, I didn’t think it was going to work out so I just gave myself a stupid name—it’s my finsta.”

‘Ceilings’, a personal favourite, really encapsulates Beabadoobee as an artist. Of course, there’s the rough, stripped-back feeling, but also the, if slightly tainted, innocence:

Miss me like the scent of your first room, The thing you’ve always wanted to go back to, Ceilings were so high when you were five, Miss me like the way your mother misses your height”.

At only 18-years-old, Bea Kristi has endless possibilities for her career, although having said that her end-goal is to teach young kids, I am sure we can expect more of her earworms in the future as she makes music for herself. “It’s so hard to not be a fake bitch in this industry… I went into this thinking this was going to go nowhere. I was just doing it for fun. So every time you make art, do it for fun. With no expectations.”

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