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Natasha Bedingfield
With a successful debut in 2004, this New Zealand-born, England-raised singer/songwriter proved that she can put beats and rhymes to the most unlikely of subject matters and make it sound good. On her hit single These Words, she put to music her frustrating quest for a love song with a “killer hook” and got fans ~ mostly non-songwriters ~ to sing along.

Now she returns, tongue firmly in cheek, to make the best use of the phrase ‘mmm mmm mmm mmm’ (not sure exactly how many ‘mmm’s) since the last successful attempt by the darkly comic Crash Test Dummies. Her last album brought her some much-coveted US-market success. It is too early to comment on whether this one will do the same, but be sure to check out her new single I Wanna Have Your Babies because it is a fun, bop-worthy tune. Read on for our interview with the singer.

What is the biggest difference between this album and the last one?
Well, the first album is very idealistic and positive and shows where I was at in the beginning of something ~ on the very edge of something. You know, it has songs like If You’re Gonna… [which says], ‘if you’re going to jump, then jump far’, if you’re going to do it then do it with everything you have and make the most of it, and that’s very much where I was at. I was taking a risk.
The next album, is, when you listen to it, you’ll hear it’s a lot more about relationships and I just wanted the theme to be a little bit different. That’s the other thing about the last album, there was a song called Single on it about me being loud and proud about being single and really just enjoying that stage of life and I really did enjoy that stage of life and I feel that through it, it allowed me to date guys and so I just wanted to incorporate all of that into the next album. [The new] album is definitely not like a completely serious album that you have to sit down to with a frown on your face and cry! (Laughs) It’s got that very tongue-in-cheek side.

In the lyrics of I Wanna Have Your Babies, you are very upfront and honest…
The song is definitely not to be taken seriously. If you’re a man listening to that song do not freak out, because it’s supposed to be about girls that freak guys out; and so, you’re supposed to have a bit of a giggle about it. I want to talk about all the things [that] as a girl, you keep in your head because you know that it’s not the appropriate thing to say, but you’re still thinking it. If you meet a guy that you like, most girls when they’re talking with their girlfriends later on they’ll be, you know, thinking of, ‘What does his name sound like after mine’ or ‘Would our kids inherit his blue eyes’, or… you know, that’s just how we think; we think very long, long term and sometimes that just gets us in trouble. I think too much and it can stop you from really just enjoying where you’re at as well [as] appreciating it.

Are you happy to take the initiative in relationships?
I’ve got no problems ringing a guy up. I don’t think a guy really in this day and age would feel bad about a girl who’s confident in herself approaching him. I think that guys still like to feel like they’re able to chase their girl in some way. But I think that, you know, confidence is a very attractive thing. I find if a guy’s confident, it’s very attractive to me.

Do you find songwriting therapeutic?
For me, writing songs has always been a way of getting things out. I’m not the kind of person who just goes around talking about everything that I go through while it’s happening and [someone who] has to have that friend that’s a sounding-board that I just… I mean I need that sometimes but… you know… I mull it over a lot in my head. And for me, getting it out in a song or a poem or writing, that’s the best way for me because then I’m not burdening someone with my stuff. [Laughs] So in some ways songwriting is a bit therapeutic. It’s just like a release for me and I think it’s something that I’m fascinated by ~ trying to express that thing that is just bugging me or just that I’m thinking about, just trying to work out how I can put it into words and music.

How autobiographical are your songs?
It is very interesting how sometimes I’ll write a song and I won’t actually think about it relating to me and then I’ll just realise later how very autobiographical it was. For example, I Bruise Easily just felt like it’s such a cool title and the song talks about being vulnerable in relationships and that’s what relationships are all about and at the time I just thought it was a cool idea. After all the touring and after really working so hard and being really exhausted sometimes and feeling like… well, as a human being you’ve really got limitations to how hard you can push yourself… And after being in some relationships and realising how hard it is to become vulnerable I just realised how true that song is for me.

You can read the rest of our feature on Natasha Bedingfield in the May 2007 issue of The Record Music Magazine available at your local newsagent.


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