Tangerine

25/06/2021

A fresh face to the production world, Tangerine (aka Clementine Girard-Foley) has proven that she is here to stay, with the finesse and talent of any veteran of the scene. Tangerine seems to walk two distinct yet related pathways in her musical world, on one hand she waltzes, writing beautiful contemporary classical piano compositions, as seen recently with her track ‘Spiral’ on Pure Space’s ‘Proximity’ compilation. On the other, she struts showing her darker side crafting driving experimental electronic sets which effortlessly weave between slo-mo techno, electro and drum and bass, her debut performance reaching Melbourne Music Week audiences. With a background in piano, Clem found the rigidity of performing the likes of Chopin Nocturnes to the standards of the classical music world somewhat cruel, but unquestionably stifling. Lucky for us, she found comfort in her own compositions – no doubt the free and boundless nature of electronic music production also drawing her to the dark side. In amongst it all, Clem also finds the time to build platforms for our creative community, co-founding Verve Zine, a multidisciplinary multimedia platform dedicated to promoting emerging artists. If this is just the beginning for Tangerine’s production journey, put me down for staying until the end. Tangerine joined for episode of Passing Notes 120 on 26th June 2021 with a 45 minutes LIVE set. Clem also kindly answered my prying questions, with a lovely interview below!

 

Interview with Tangerine

 

Penny: So before we take it to the dark side can you tell us about your background in music?

 

Tangerine: Hi Penny thanks a lot for the very flattering intro, feels very surreal to be on the show! My background in music is patchy! I had piano lessons from the age of five and started improvising/composing a few years later. Unfortunately, I never got to a great skill level in piano performance because I didn’t practice enough + found music theory really boring…so I’ve come out from all these years with a trained ear, but that’s pretty much it I’d say haha. In terms of electronic music, I’m self-taught!….Repping the school of Youtube tutorials and experimenting on Ableton for hours until my mistakes turned into something not too unpleasant to listen to.  

 

Penny: I’m always interested to hear about people’s experiences shifting from the classical world to the electronic world or how they experience the nexus between them.  Can you tell me about your journey into electronic music? 

 

Tangerine: I was fortunate enough to experience the tail-end of the Mercat, Boney and Hugs&Kisses days, I basically became obsessed with electronic music on the dancefloor although my initial exposure to it all was in rave/park party environments. I’ll never forget seeing Harold play at Subterranea and blowing my mind! I think that from the start, my attraction towards the darker side of electronic music was there. I moved to Canberra for uni where I started my involvement in the scene there as a baby promoter with my best friend Maya. But for quite a few years, I lacked the confidence to throw myself into DJ-ing (production always being the end goal though) and so I initially started behind the scenes because it was a comfortable way of engaging with something that I loved without necessarily having to put myself on show. However, I did accidentally post a piano composition on my Soundcloud titled ‘Drifting Vessel’ (it was meant to be private but somehow I ticked the wrong box + the song also shared itself onto my Facebook timeline) and while initially I panicked big time about it being public, the reception I received was really warming. Because of that very song, I was asked to perform my piano compositions at my friend Kavil’s gig at Crazy Arms early 2020. Following that gig, I was offered a release and the live set for Outhouse’s MMW show. They booked me anticipating a piano-esque live set but umm things took a different turn and now I make ~beatz~, which is more ‘me’ I think…piano compositions are definitely more emblematic of my younger self. 

 

Penny: How does classical training/music inform your productions?

 

Tangerine: I think that my intuition for creating melodies and harmonic progressions comes from many years of playing and listening to classical music (and other styles too, especially film soundtracks). Again, my knowledge of theory is fairly patchy so I rely predominantly on my ear and what I intuitively feel should come next or what sound should be included when I’m arranging a track. My parents sent me off to composition summer school in the UK when I was still living in France, and that did formalise my composition knowledge to some extent. Though what I mainly took away from that experience was a fear of creating something ‘simple’ with too little modulations and variations – which I guess is good because the critical mindset those lessons gave rise to make me very careful in my approach to creating and developing ideas.  

 

Penny: I love the contrast of these two outputs so much – your track on Sydney’s “Pure Space” label compilation is beautiful and has featured on the show a number of times…and your live set for Outhouse’s Melbourne Music Week show is what brought us here today. Are there certain times, spaces or moods in which you find yourself drawn to creating either piano compositions or electronic compositions?

 

Tangerine: I think piano and electronic compositions are each tied to distinct chunks of time in my life, with piano being what I grew up doing (especially when I lived in France) and electronic music being what I attribute to my current life in Australia. I feel like I’ve changed a huge amount since moving here 8 years ago and that shift is paralleled by the transition of piano to electronic music. It definitely feels like the bursts of energy that are perhaps more naturally aligned with dance music suits this time in life when the pace is fast and unpredictable. But I can definitely see my preference for production shifting at a later stage back to composing for acoustic instrumentation, when the beats and bleeps don’t quite capture how I live my life. 

 

Penny: People often take very diverse approaches to making electronic music… in the sense that some focus more on releases and other more of crafting live sets, with an obvious spectrum of approaches in between. Can you tell me what has drawn you to the process of crafting live sets?

 

Tangerine: I was drawn to live sets as the result of a series of fortunate accidents. I definitely had no ambition of playing live in the immediate future until one day mid-2020 when Henry and Ed asked me to play the Outhouse MMW show. I said yes to playing live (having hidden my internal meltdown). I subsequently rented a studio and got up incredibly early every day to go there over the course of a few months to learn from as many tutorials, websites and articles as I could to try and figure out how to play live. I also was really fortunate in that a few friends of mine explained a lot of key aspects of production and sound engineering to me – forever grateful to Jo, Connor and Matt. But honestly, I don’t think I’ve ever been so stressed in the lead up to that gig and it took me quite a few months to recover from that period.. The really awesome thing is now I actually really look forward to playing live, enjoy performing and no longer feel like I’m on the verge of a stress-induced heart attack lol, so luckily it was a fairly rapid turnaround. 🙂 I think live sets are a great stepping stone into production because you don’t really need to develop your ideas like you would for a track. It can be a few bar loops of one particular drum sequence or melody and if you’re stuck, you can just move on to a different idea. Now that I feel a bit more confident though, I love playing live because it’s a special feeling to share the sounds that make me feel a particular way with others. I think that because I grew up in a very strict and disciplined environment, I struggle to express aspects of my character in words and body language, and so music is this outlet for communicating that other ‘looser’ self. I approach live sets from a context-heavy perspective, and in preparing the set, I really enjoy speculating about what I’d want to be feeling or hearing at a particular time of night in a particular location if I were on the dancefloor. The fun is in seeing whether the sounds I hoped would have an effect on people actually do turn out to have their intended impact. 

 

Penny: Elements of your productions and DJ sets touch on quite experimental or non-linear sounds, can you tell me what draws you to these sounds?

 

Tangerine: I like sounds that feel like little people, and I think the music that I’m drawn to has that expressivity as a result of using charismatic noises. Electronic music is predominantly non-lyrical and so the ability to tell a story or induce a mood is dependent on the sounds itself, and so to me, the songs that capture my interest are those that have that story-telling capacity. They are made up of components that have a distinct character to them and are welded together to communicate something that can be related to. 

 

Penny: Now my research also tells me your creativity spans multiple mediums, being the co-founder of Verve Zine and le doof, dipping your toe into the promoter world but all in all it seems like you have a lot on your plate that sits upon a law degree. Tell me about these platforms and what they mean to you? 

 

TangerineHaha I think that taking way too many things on has definitely come at a cost e.g. sending demos to compilations months after a deadline (so ashamed omg), not really seeing friends for months, all-nighters being a regular feature of my life, and so on. I definitely need to figure out a way to balance things better but hopefully that’ll umm fix itself eventually. But to answer your question: I stepped down from Verve last year because of not having the time to dedicate myself fully to the project. It’s been really heart-warming seeing the project grow now that I have a bit of distance from it, and I fully believe in the people who make up the current team and their ability to guide the platform and maintain its ethos. Le Doof was a series of open-air parties and club nights I ran with my best friend Maya when we were both studying our undergraduate degrees in Canberra. I made some really amazing friends as a result of that project, experienced some ridiculously fun nights and have a whole load of funny stories to tell about the million things that went wrong every time we organised an event, like that time the sound system blew up at 7 in the morning and Maya’s response was to plug a crepe machine into the generator and attempt to feed crepes to the confused intox people who had stuck around. 

 

Penny: Now you’ve prepared a live set for us today – which I am extremely excited to hear. What was the process of making this?

 

Tangerine: The live set contains songs that I played at Lucid in May this year, as well as a few songs that were created for a park party at which I was meant to play late March, at 8 in the morning (!). Unfortunately cops rocked up and so the night ended in buying vegan sausage rolls at the Heidelberg 7/11, rather than the delirium of a morning at a park party…the last few songs in the set were meant to mess with that morning madness. And then the start of the set I made this week, because I decided I hated a lot of the material I was initially going to use and so scrapped all of it and started again.  

 

Penny: Anything we should know about that is coming up in the life of Tangerine?

 

Tangerine: A few gigs, a few releases, nothing announced as of yet and who knows what’ll come out of it given the pandemic-induced precarity of literally every single thing at the moment but oh well, at least you can’t lock Soundcloud down.

Tangerine

25/06/2021

A fresh face to the production world, Tangerine (aka Clementine Girard-Foley) has proven that she is here to stay, with the finesse and talent of any veteran of the scene. Tangerine seems to walk two distinct yet related pathways in her musical world, on one hand she waltzes, writing beautiful contemporary classical piano compositions, as seen recently with her track ‘Spiral’ on Pure Space’s ‘Proximity’ compilation. On the other, she struts showing her darker side crafting driving experimental electronic sets which effortlessly weave between slo-mo techno, electro and drum and bass, her debut performance reaching Melbourne Music Week audiences. With a background in piano, Clem found the rigidity of performing the likes of Chopin Nocturnes to the standards of the classical music world somewhat cruel, but unquestionably stifling. Lucky for us, she found comfort in her own compositions – no doubt the free and boundless nature of electronic music production also drawing her to the dark side. In amongst it all, Clem also finds the time to build platforms for our creative community, co-founding Verve Zine, a multidisciplinary multimedia platform dedicated to promoting emerging artists. If this is just the beginning for Tangerine’s production journey, put me down for staying until the end. Tangerine joined for episode of Passing Notes 120 on 26th June 2021 with a 45 minutes LIVE set. Clem also kindly answered my prying questions, with a lovely interview below!

 

Interview with Tangerine

 

Penny: So before we take it to the dark side can you tell us about your background in music?

 

Tangerine: Hi Penny thanks a lot for the very flattering intro, feels very surreal to be on the show! My background in music is patchy! I had piano lessons from the age of five and started improvising/composing a few years later. Unfortunately, I never got to a great skill level in piano performance because I didn’t practice enough + found music theory really boring…so I’ve come out from all these years with a trained ear, but that’s pretty much it I’d say haha. In terms of electronic music, I’m self-taught!….Repping the school of Youtube tutorials and experimenting on Ableton for hours until my mistakes turned into something not too unpleasant to listen to.  

 

Penny: I’m always interested to hear about people’s experiences shifting from the classical world to the electronic world or how they experience the nexus between them.  Can you tell me about your journey into electronic music? 

 

Tangerine: I was fortunate enough to experience the tail-end of the Mercat, Boney and Hugs&Kisses days, I basically became obsessed with electronic music on the dancefloor although my initial exposure to it all was in rave/park party environments. I’ll never forget seeing Harold play at Subterranea and blowing my mind! I think that from the start, my attraction towards the darker side of electronic music was there. I moved to Canberra for uni where I started my involvement in the scene there as a baby promoter with my best friend Maya. But for quite a few years, I lacked the confidence to throw myself into DJ-ing (production always being the end goal though) and so I initially started behind the scenes because it was a comfortable way of engaging with something that I loved without necessarily having to put myself on show. However, I did accidentally post a piano composition on my Soundcloud titled ‘Drifting Vessel’ (it was meant to be private but somehow I ticked the wrong box + the song also shared itself onto my Facebook timeline) and while initially I panicked big time about it being public, the reception I received was really warming. Because of that very song, I was asked to perform my piano compositions at my friend Kavil’s gig at Crazy Arms early 2020. Following that gig, I was offered a release and the live set for Outhouse’s MMW show. They booked me anticipating a piano-esque live set but umm things took a different turn and now I make ~beatz~, which is more ‘me’ I think…piano compositions are definitely more emblematic of my younger self. 

 

Penny: How does classical training/music inform your productions?

 

Tangerine: I think that my intuition for creating melodies and harmonic progressions comes from many years of playing and listening to classical music (and other styles too, especially film soundtracks). Again, my knowledge of theory is fairly patchy so I rely predominantly on my ear and what I intuitively feel should come next or what sound should be included when I’m arranging a track. My parents sent me off to composition summer school in the UK when I was still living in France, and that did formalise my composition knowledge to some extent. Though what I mainly took away from that experience was a fear of creating something ‘simple’ with too little modulations and variations – which I guess is good because the critical mindset those lessons gave rise to make me very careful in my approach to creating and developing ideas.  

 

Penny: I love the contrast of these two outputs so much – your track on Sydney’s “Pure Space” label compilation is beautiful and has featured on the show a number of times…and your live set for Outhouse’s Melbourne Music Week show is what brought us here today. Are there certain times, spaces or moods in which you find yourself drawn to creating either piano compositions or electronic compositions?

 

Tangerine: I think piano and electronic compositions are each tied to distinct chunks of time in my life, with piano being what I grew up doing (especially when I lived in France) and electronic music being what I attribute to my current life in Australia. I feel like I’ve changed a huge amount since moving here 8 years ago and that shift is paralleled by the transition of piano to electronic music. It definitely feels like the bursts of energy that are perhaps more naturally aligned with dance music suits this time in life when the pace is fast and unpredictable. But I can definitely see my preference for production shifting at a later stage back to composing for acoustic instrumentation, when the beats and bleeps don’t quite capture how I live my life. 

 

Penny: People often take very diverse approaches to making electronic music… in the sense that some focus more on releases and other more of crafting live sets, with an obvious spectrum of approaches in between. Can you tell me what has drawn you to the process of crafting live sets?

 

Tangerine: I was drawn to live sets as the result of a series of fortunate accidents. I definitely had no ambition of playing live in the immediate future until one day mid-2020 when Henry and Ed asked me to play the Outhouse MMW show. I said yes to playing live (having hidden my internal meltdown). I subsequently rented a studio and got up incredibly early every day to go there over the course of a few months to learn from as many tutorials, websites and articles as I could to try and figure out how to play live. I also was really fortunate in that a few friends of mine explained a lot of key aspects of production and sound engineering to me – forever grateful to Jo, Connor and Matt. But honestly, I don’t think I’ve ever been so stressed in the lead up to that gig and it took me quite a few months to recover from that period.. The really awesome thing is now I actually really look forward to playing live, enjoy performing and no longer feel like I’m on the verge of a stress-induced heart attack lol, so luckily it was a fairly rapid turnaround. 🙂 I think live sets are a great stepping stone into production because you don’t really need to develop your ideas like you would for a track. It can be a few bar loops of one particular drum sequence or melody and if you’re stuck, you can just move on to a different idea. Now that I feel a bit more confident though, I love playing live because it’s a special feeling to share the sounds that make me feel a particular way with others. I think that because I grew up in a very strict and disciplined environment, I struggle to express aspects of my character in words and body language, and so music is this outlet for communicating that other ‘looser’ self. I approach live sets from a context-heavy perspective, and in preparing the set, I really enjoy speculating about what I’d want to be feeling or hearing at a particular time of night in a particular location if I were on the dancefloor. The fun is in seeing whether the sounds I hoped would have an effect on people actually do turn out to have their intended impact. 

 

Penny: Elements of your productions and DJ sets touch on quite experimental or non-linear sounds, can you tell me what draws you to these sounds?

 

Tangerine: I like sounds that feel like little people, and I think the music that I’m drawn to has that expressivity as a result of using charismatic noises. Electronic music is predominantly non-lyrical and so the ability to tell a story or induce a mood is dependent on the sounds itself, and so to me, the songs that capture my interest are those that have that story-telling capacity. They are made up of components that have a distinct character to them and are welded together to communicate something that can be related to. 

 

Penny: Now my research also tells me your creativity spans multiple mediums, being the co-founder of Verve Zine and le doof, dipping your toe into the promoter world but all in all it seems like you have a lot on your plate that sits upon a law degree. Tell me about these platforms and what they mean to you? 

 

TangerineHaha I think that taking way too many things on has definitely come at a cost e.g. sending demos to compilations months after a deadline (so ashamed omg), not really seeing friends for months, all-nighters being a regular feature of my life, and so on. I definitely need to figure out a way to balance things better but hopefully that’ll umm fix itself eventually. But to answer your question: I stepped down from Verve last year because of not having the time to dedicate myself fully to the project. It’s been really heart-warming seeing the project grow now that I have a bit of distance from it, and I fully believe in the people who make up the current team and their ability to guide the platform and maintain its ethos. Le Doof was a series of open-air parties and club nights I ran with my best friend Maya when we were both studying our undergraduate degrees in Canberra. I made some really amazing friends as a result of that project, experienced some ridiculously fun nights and have a whole load of funny stories to tell about the million things that went wrong every time we organised an event, like that time the sound system blew up at 7 in the morning and Maya’s response was to plug a crepe machine into the generator and attempt to feed crepes to the confused intox people who had stuck around. 

 

Penny: Now you’ve prepared a live set for us today – which I am extremely excited to hear. What was the process of making this?

 

Tangerine: The live set contains songs that I played at Lucid in May this year, as well as a few songs that were created for a park party at which I was meant to play late March, at 8 in the morning (!). Unfortunately cops rocked up and so the night ended in buying vegan sausage rolls at the Heidelberg 7/11, rather than the delirium of a morning at a park party…the last few songs in the set were meant to mess with that morning madness. And then the start of the set I made this week, because I decided I hated a lot of the material I was initially going to use and so scrapped all of it and started again.  

 

Penny: Anything we should know about that is coming up in the life of Tangerine?

 

Tangerine: A few gigs, a few releases, nothing announced as of yet and who knows what’ll come out of it given the pandemic-induced precarity of literally every single thing at the moment but oh well, at least you can’t lock Soundcloud down.