In conversation with RUER

With a sound ringing similar to the zest of Kimbra mixed with a teaspoon of the more calmer tones of Billie Eilish, RUER is one Perth-based artist confidently breaking boundaries with her own funky sound.

We got all comfy and sat down with the exciting RUER to talk all things music of course and her plans for the past, present and exciting future.

So, what was your earliest memory with music?

Interesting question, I’ve never thought about this before. Thinking now, I would say my earliest memory is sitting in my lounge room with my family, singing together. We would sing all the time. My dad and my brother would play guitars, my mum and my sister and I would sing in harmonies. I would’ve only been five or six, but I was always singing harmonies and I think it really helped me develop a good ear for music.

 Why do you think music has been such an important part of your life?

Music has been in my family my whole life. It’s always been a way of expression since I was young but it was only when I started song writing that I felt like I could truly communicate how I was feeling through poetry and harmony. Song writing is actually a huge part of how I process everything happening around me.

How would you describe the style of your music?

Oh geez. I always find this a hard question to answer, not because I think you can’t put my music in a box but because I really don’t know! It can depend on the day, the music I’m listening to, the books I’m reading, movies I’m watching, or who I’m hanging out with. At the moment, I’d say electronic-pop is the best umbrella for my music, but it’s also a lot more about the lyrics and subtle intricacies that you have to look out for. 

 Growing up, what were some of your biggest music influences?

Look, I’ll be honest with you, I spent a lot of my younger years listening to Delta Goodrem and Nickelback… Thankfully my brother introduced me to Thirsty Merc, The Killers, and I got into jazz, Beyoncé, and a lot more interesting stuff as I got older.

My biggest influence coming out of high school was definitely Kimbra! She has this way of blending jazz and pop in such a creative way, I’d never heard anything like it, it was fun, emotional and all those other feelings. These days I like to take little bits from anything I listen to. Doesn’t matter whether it’s Coltrane or Ariana, just give me juicy tunes.

You recently dropped your new single ‘I Don’t Need Ya’ which we love, tell us a bit about what the song is really about?

When I wrote the lyrics for this song, I was feeling frustrated. I was relying on other people to help me make my music because I felt like such an amateur as a producer, but I just didn’t feel musically supported. At that point, I just said, “Screw it. I don’t need anybody else. I can do this on my own!” And here we are.

What was the creative process for the song like?

‘I Don’t Need Ya’ flowed out so effortlessly. I had the lyrics and bare bones of the track finished in less than an hour, but after that, it took a lot longer to piece together the production side of things. I’m very new to production so I was (and still am) learning on the go – putting pieces together over months, getting sick of the sound of my own voice, showing it to friends and family asking for opinions, and then finally releasing it into the world.

How do you normally create your music – is it more of a planned-out process or more spontaneous?

The initial song writing is usually spontaneous, I’ll have a theme or melodic/harmonic idea in mind before I sit down at a piano or my laptop and basically just improvise. I’ll play and sing, write down anything I like and when I feel like something is good, I’ll record it on my phone to remember for later

Most of the time, song writing is a kind of therapy for me, so I’ll usually have something on my mind but sometimes the music brings out issues that I didn’t even know that I needed to deal with. It’s amazing (creepy? haha) how the subconscious does that. Actually, finishing a song is more tedious for me, so I definitely have to plan it out and take time the to do that once I have the bare bones of it.

What has been some of the biggest lessons you have had to learn as an upcoming musician?

At the moment, my biggest lesson is to make music I like. It’s in my personality to be a bit of a people pleaser so I’ve spent a lot of time trying to be different things, impress different people, and take music a bit too seriously. I’m slowly breaking out of that now and just trying to remember that music is meant to be enjoyed in one way or another, and I like it so I’m sure someone else will too.

What have been some stand-out career highlights?

I have never produced music prior to 2018. I was dabbling with Ableton here and there, just trying to learn the software so I thought I would enter the triple j remix comp as a way to challenge myself. Honestly, I just wanted to download the stems and try something I’d never done before. I uploaded the track to unearthed and kind of forgot about it. A day or two later a friend of mine sent me a text, my remix was featured on the triple j drive show! And then when the comp closed I got a call saying I had been chosen as one of the 5 finalists. I just could not believe that my shoddy, home-recorded, un-auto tuned track had been so well received. That’s been a major highlight for me, and was the boost I needed to keep trying, keep creating.

Other than that, I was recently signed to a local label! 

What do you think of the Perth music scene currently?

It was pretty scary stepping into the original music scene in Perth. I didn’t really have any connections and had no idea what the process was, which is why I am so thankful for WOMPP (Women of Music Production Perth). Everyone in the group is incredibly supportive and encouraging, and it’s also nice to be surrounded by other women for a change. The music industry that I had seen could be very judgemental, competitive and elitist. It’s been amazing to not only find a group like WOMPP but be picked up by their label as well! So, I am beyond excited about this corner of the Perth music scene.

 Any upcoming gigs people can get to if they want to hear ‘I Don’t Need Ya’ live?

Nothing planned just yet… but I’m working on it!

 Finally, what are your future plans?

At the moment, I’ve got my head down, busy writing, and recording. There a few collabs in the works as well as a plan to put together an EP, but you’ll have to keep an eye and an ear out for those ones.

Go grab yourself a well-deserved copy of ‘I Don’t Need Ya’ right here.

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