HAIM and their producer Ariel Rechtshaid have talked the making of their song ‘Summer Girl’ on the latest episode of Song Exploder.
Member Danielle Haim also recalled the early days of their professional relationship with Rechtshaid, whom she eventually began to date.
“I’d head a Cass McCombs song that I loved called ‘County Line’ and I remember looking it up, [and thinking] ‘Who did this album? Who produced this? This is awesome!’ and I saw this name, Ariel Rechtshaid,” Haim remembered of their first meeting in 2012.
“So then I think a couple weeks later I heard the Usher song, ‘Climax’. I looked it up and, oh my gosh, there’s that name again. I remember telling my manager, I want to meet with this guy and that’s how we met in 2012”.
“We had a chemistry and did a few songs and at one point I was in London mixing a record and HAIM happened to be camped out there doing press and we sort of reconnected for the first time in a while,” Rechtshaid added.
“It was a slow build after that but that was I think when Danielle and I suddenly had this connection”.
Rechtshaid was later tapped to produce HAIM’s debut album, ‘Days Are Gone’, as well as its follow-up, ‘Something To Tell You’. While working on the group’s second record, the producer was diagnosed with testicular cancer.
“[HAIM] were just like, ‘what do you need, we’re here’, by my side the whole time,” Rechtshaid recalled.
“I don’t know if there are words for how supportive Danielle and her sisters were…we essentially limped through the making of ‘Something To Tell You’.
“That was really like an intense period but then we got through it.”
The pair went on to discuss the making of HAIM’s 2019 single ‘Summer Girl’, which Danielle Haim conceived of while on a vacation with Rechtshaid following his diagnosis.
“I wanted to be Ariel’s light in that gnarly time. And then after that vacation, I just kept thinking about these little sketches that I wrote on GarageBand [while on vacation] and I was like ‘I really just need to sit down and start writing’,” she said.
Haim’s sisters/bandmates responded positively to the song while workshopping it.
“I remember her talking about this feeling of being on the road and really wanting to kind of be this ray of sunshine for Ariel when he was feeling down,” bassist Este Haim recalled.
“I love this song. It represents a really important part of the last couple of years,” added Danielle Haim.
Listen to the full interview, which also features producer Rostam, below:
HAIM eventually released ‘Summer Girl’ as the lead single from their 2020 record, ‘Women In Music Pt. III”, which Rechtshaid also worked on. In a five-star review, NME called the trio’s third album “a thing of great beauty”.
“By breaking from what the world might expect from them and letting themselves do whatever the hell they want, [HAIM] have produced a record that’s experimental, soothing and vulnerable,” the review read.