Betti is one of Decca Records most recent signings, a beautifully mysterious vocalist whose debut single, ‘Ordinary’, tells a tale of honest, real-life love. Evoking the likes of Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday and Amy Winehouse, and a style that hearkens back to the age of burlesque, the Atlanta native has the ability to command any room.
“This is my official guide to being a BOSS B*TCH,” tells the artist, fresh from her European tour with Rag’n’Bone Man. “These women have been an inspiration to me my entire life as well as when I was making my upcoming album. I am so thankful to them for their fearless approach, paving the way for artists like me. As a 22-year-old, I’ve grown up in an era where we are exposed to so much…one of those things being music.
“To be inspired by any style, any era, any artist and have it at my fingertips really shaped my love for diverse sounds. That access has been vital in the creation of my personal style of music. In this playlist, I’ve curated an example of the diversity that surrounds me, using songs from artists like Patsy Cline and M.I.A. Variety is what inspires me most and it’s my biggest advice to anyone wanting to become an artist. I hope you enjoy these records I’ve selected and take a moment to reflect on the past and present of powerful female artist in the music industry.”
1. Patsy Cline – ‘Crazy’
“An interesting fact about this tune is that it was written by Willie Nelson in 1961. That same year, Patsy Cline picked it up, and it quickly became one of her signature tunes. The success of the song for Patsy also helped launch Willie’s songwriting and performing career. For me, this song brings back a lot of memories about growing up in the south. Both of my parents are southern-raised, so country music was a huge staple of my childhood. Looking back now I’m so thankful that I was introduced to such great songwriting at such a young age. It has influenced how I think about songs tremendously, this song being a great example.”
2. Eartha Kitt – ‘I Want To Be Evil’
“Sassy and witty! I am such a fan of Eartha Kitt. Do yourself a favour and watch the video to this song as well. She was such a performer and this video really shows it off.”
3. Judy Garland – ‘Over The Rainbow’
“I have a vivid memory of being a young girl watching The Wizard of Oz with my father. The moment this song came on he’d always start singing. He told me he wanted me to learn it so I could sing it too. I did and I haven’t stopped singing it since. Judy has now become a huge inspiration for my vocal style. There is just so much to learn from the ease of her tone and delivery.”
4. Billie Holiday – ‘You’re My Thrill’
“Ohhhh how I love Billie. Probably my greatest idol when it comes to vocal performance. In my book, she was and will forever be the greatest Jazz singer of all time. While I have MANY favourite songs by Miss. Lady Day, I picked this one because I love the sexy yet haunting melody. It is one that always comes to mind when I think of Billie.”
5. Amy Winehouse – ‘Half Time’
“This is one of my absolute favourite songs that Amy ever recorded. She truly set the bar with the delivery she gave on this record. Could be my favourite vocal of hers ever captured. You just find yourself getting lost in the space she leaves between phrases, hanging on to every word.”
6. Edith Piaf – ‘La Vie En Rose’
“The epitome of romance. From the moment this song begins, you feel like you’re in the arms of your lover. Edith’s delivery is so honest and powerful that even if you don’t understand what she is saying, you know what she’s saying. There’s so much to learn from an artist like that.”
7. Etta James – ‘At Last’
“This song holds a special place in my heart because it is actually what my husband and I consider ‘our song’. We both have a tattoo of the lyrics: I found a dream that I could speak to, a dream that I could call my own.”
8. M.I.A – ‘Paper Planes’
“I’ve always been a huge fan of M.I.A. and her originality. There is no one like her, and I really respect that as an artist. She’s also super true to herself and always makes sure it shows through her art. A real bad a$$ b*tch.”
9. Grace Potter & The Nocturnals – ‘Paris (Oh La la)’
“I remember when I first heard of Grace Potter. I was probably 16 or 17, I was instantly drawn to her powerful performance both vocally and in a live setting. I learned a lot about how high my voice could really go by singing along to her album.”
10. Donna Summer – ‘Hot Stuff’
“Anyone who works with me knows I’m extremely visual, and I’m very vocal in my vision of how certain things make me feel. While making my first studio album, it was important to me to also simultaneously create a world around the music. I fell deeply in love with the Disco era and all that was Studio 54 vibes. Donna Summer was somewhat known as the Queen of Disco, so to represent my love for this era and style of music I could pick no other!”
Betti’s cover of Britney Spears‘ ‘Toxic’ is out now. Watch the video HERE.