As BØRNS releases his second album ‘Blue Madonna’ – which he’s teamed up with Lana Del Rey for – the US indie-pop maestro talks about his Michigan beginnings, getting praise from Prince, and er, magic.
Did you enjoy growing up in Michigan?
|I think it gave me a lot of time to dabble in a lot of different creative outlets and ultimately, I’m still, I feel like I’m still tapping into things that I really got into as a kid with like film making. I was very fascinated with making my own clothes and styles so I’ve been getting more into that world now. I definitely had to make my own entertainment for a while so.”
You’ve made clothes, videos, music, lots of stuff. Was creativity key for you growing up?
“I kind of lose my mind a little bit if I’m not making something. I feel very short-attention span for like accomplishment. It’s like ‘oh that felt really good’ and then it’s kind of like an immediate emptiness of I need to make something else – I don’t like to dwell on things too long.”
You were also a keen magician. Still practising?
“Occasionally. I’ve actually been quite interested in bringing it back. I’ve incorporated just little tiny bits onto some of the videos I’ve been doing but I feel like making music, in a way is very similar to a magic show. Because there’s a lot of preparation that’s involved, there’s a lot of behind-the-scenes work that people don’t see, they’re just kind of seeing this final product and it’s almost like it’s materialising before their eyes.
I guess that’s always the mystery of music. It’s like why does this song make me feel so grey or why does it make me feel sad or happy or nostalgic and so I’m most fascinated by breaking that down in my music.”
What kind of mindset were you in starting this second album?
“They were definitely moments of being like just completely confused and like I don’t know how these to things are gonna go together and sometimes it was being too close to it. There were moments of like having two parts, two completely different things and trying to mesh them together, we’re like ‘god these just aren’t going together, why does it feel so disjointed’.”
Before he died Prince namechecked you and revealed he was a fan. What was that like?
“Yeah I felt that was intense. Yeah that’s absolutely crazy, I mean, I’ve had a fascination with Prince’s music since I was really young and I remember listening to Musicology in my room, which was one of those later albums but just like knowing every single nuance in that record, just really close to me so it’s pretty crazy to be acknowledged by someone like that.”
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‘Blue Madonna’ is out now