Bishop Briggs Talks Her Love Affair With Music, Inspired by Father’s Frank Sinatra Karaoke

Emily Chu + Meredith Schneider

Bishop Briggs has lived pretty much all over the globe – from London, to Tokyo, To Hong Kong, To LA. At just 24 years of age, she’s been gaining a lot of attention lately with her first single, “Wild Horses” as well as her hit, “River”. We had the opportunity to ask Briggs a few questions about her music.

Where do you originally hail from? How do you think that has aided in shaping who you are and how you live your life?

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I was born in London but my entire family is Scottish. To make it even more complicated I grew up in Japan and Hong Kong! I think living in these places has given me more to write about!

Tell me a little about how how your love for music came to be.  What was the first moment you had in your life when you knew you had to sing?

My love for music began as any love affair does…fascination. When I lived in Japan we would always go to Karaoke bars no matter what the occasion. My dad was singing a Frank Sinatra song and I just saw this light in his eyes. I wanted a piece of it. This is something that I’ve always wanted to do. Truthfully seeing it as a career came much later. I think the key is finding your passion and feeling that urgency to follow it no matter what.

What’s your favorite part about making music in LA?

I love that everyone get’s it here. No matter who you talk to they understand the struggle and grind that comes with music. With that being said, I also love that everyone in LA has passion for what they do.

You have such a bold, badass presence in music. Did you find that the process of coming into your own was difficult, or have you always had thick skin?
Thank you so much. I think no matter who you are, coming into your own is a process (putting it lightly). Music and the pursuit of it are a whole different animal… I think you have to force your skin to get thicker if you want to survive.

Your voice is so STRONG and multi-dimensional. Did you have any vocal training?

Thank you! I did. I took vocal lessons in Hong Kong for 8 years. Every Saturday I would be with Christine Samson learning technique and form. Since moving to LA, I haven’t taken lessons…I’ve been meaning to!

Your single “The Way I Do” has an intense bass line right off the bat, and a very unique sound. It’s soulful and bluesy, and resonates TERRIBLY with me. Do you mind me asking what specifically inspired that song?

I’m so glad you feel it! This song was inspired by a psychic visit with one of my close friends who is also a musician. The psychic told her that she was planning on quitting music. I spoke to my friend after saying how that was a load of ___ and she admitted that she had been thinking about it! In that moment I thought, “If you leave now you will never know this love, you’ll never know this pain, you’ll never feel the way I do”. That’s where the song began.

“Wild Horses” has a very different sound to it–your voice is almost more delicate–but still a very strong bass line. What aspect of this song is your favorite?

I think my favorite aspect of ‘Wild Horses’ is the fact that its super bare and it is one of my most intimate songs.

In your Facebook bio, you make sure to highlight that you’re a “daily choker wearer.” Any specific reason why?

It just happened that way but I do think maybe chokers are good luck charms. At least I hope so!

You’re currently touring all over the place. What do you love most about road life?
 

I think my favorite part about road life is the people you meet along the way. I think the fun spots that I’ve discovered generally involve being fed!

If you could perform with anyone–living or dead–who would it be and why?

Freddie Mercury from Queen. He is someone who inspires me so much as a performer and to be able to share the stage with him would be madness.

Who’s your favorite superhero? Substantiate your claim.

My mum. Need I say more?

What’s up next for Bishop Briggs?

Over the next few months we are opening for Coldplay, going on tour with Kaleo and playing some awesome festivals in between. I am pinching myself.
Tour Dates
Aug 5 – Santa Monica Pier (Santa Monica, CA)
Aug 7 – Festival Pier (Philadelphia, PA)
Aug 20 – Rose Bowl (Pasadena, CA
Aug 21 – Rose Bowl (Pasadena, CA)
Aug 23 – Gila River Arena (Glendale, AZ)
Aug 25 – BOK Center (Tulsa, OK)
Aug 27 – AT&T Stadium (Arlington, TX)
Aug 29 – Pepsi Center (Denver, CO)
Aug 31 – Vivint Smart Home Arena (Salt Lake City, UT)
Sep 1 – T-Mobile Arena (Las Vegas, NV)
Sep 2 – Bumbershoot (Seattle, WA)
Sep 3  Levi’s Stadium (Santa Clara, CA)
Sep 23 – Life is Beautiful (Las Vegas, NV)
Sep 26 – Centerstage (Atlanta, GA)
Sep 27 – The Underground (Charlotte, NC)
Sep 30 – 9:30 Club (Washington, DC)
Oct 6 – Irving Plaza (NYC)
Oct 7 – Irving Plaza (NYC)
Oct 9 – Paradise Rock Club (Boston, MA)
Oct 11 – Newport Music Hall (Columbus, OH)
Oct 14 – Wooly’s (Des Moines, IA)
Oct 15 – House of Blues (Chicago, IL)
Oct 16 – Varsity Theater (Minneapolis, MN)
Oct 18 – Delmar Hall (St. Louis, MO)
Oct 20 – Ogden Theater (Denver, CO)
Oct 23 – Knitting Factory Concert House (Boise, ID)
Oct 27 – The Fillmore (San Francisco, CA)
Nov 2 – Livewire (Scottsdale, AZ)
Nov 4 – The Aztec Theatre (San Antonio, TX)
Nov 5 – White Oak Music Hall (Houston, TX)
Nov 11 – Emo’s (Austin, TX)

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