FAULT spoke to the equally tattooed and talented singing sensation about her road to the top of the charts in her native New Zealand, and how her hit song ‘Man Like That’ made her a Bond girl.
FAULT: You’ve recently finished your UK tour. Which do you prefer – touring or being in the studio?
Gin: Both equally!
You started writing music from a very young age (14). How important is it to have a sense of perspective looking back at your song-writing history – as opposed to being a newcomer to the writing process?
Yes and no. I waited till I was older though, to start properly making music. I didn’t really get into professionally it until I was about 20/21 so I got that time to grow up and mull around, which was definitely a good thing.
A lot of your songs have such a personal history; what is it like to work with other people on production for those personal musings?
No, because I think when you write a song it’s very personal and you can hold onto that moment, but once it gets recorded it takes on a whole new life. The personal moment never leaves but the song goes out into the big wide world and becomes other people’s experience and helps to enrich their lives and for them to deal with their own personal issues.
You’re a multiple number 1 hit-maker back home in New Zealand. How hard will it be to repeat the trick in Europe or the US?
It’s not a big deal for me to get number 1 again. The most important thing is being able to play shows and that people turn up to and enjoy. I’m focused on just consistently touring and making good music and if it works it works. There’s no trick or sole purpose in life to get number 1. Just play shows and have fun!
Who makes better pop music – the UK or the USA (generally and/or at the moment)?
I don’t really listen to top music these days. Back in the 60s I would say the UK. They were making great pop music – The Beatles were awesome!
Tell us about your personal style. Your wardrobe changes quite considerably between the flamboyant and the understated in your videos – which (if either) is the “real” Gin Wigmore?
I don’t walk around dressed like I am in ‘Man Like That’ walking to shops or anything. My personal style is definitely more understated. Videos are times to have fun, dress up and play around.
We love the video for ‘Man like That’. How did you come with the concept for that?
I always start thinking when I’m writing a song what I’m going to do with the music video. I thought to myself, I really want to do video where I’m dancing and being silly and stupid and not taking myself seriously. I decided to do a little Charleston kind of Black Bottom dance. It’s an old street dance taken from what cows do when they get stuck in mud. Had a little dance lesson, put on a little dress and away we went.
Speaking of “Man Like That”, it was, of course, used recently for the Heineken ad that tied in with Skyfall. How did that come about?
That was my music publisher. They pitched song to the ad agency and we were kept waiting for month to find out where I was going to get it. We drank a shitload of Heineken and hoped and prayed and finally we got the call, came out to London and shot it!
Who are underrated at the moment, music-wise? Who is over-rated?
Underrated: Anthony and the Johnson – he’s great! Overrated – Nickleback.
What is your FAULT?
I still bite my nails.