In collaboration with VERO, we catch up with multihyphenate creative and musician Griff to hear about her cultural recommendations, favourite places in London and the biggest achievement of her career to date.
She might be just nineteen but Griff knows what she wants and, most importantly, how to get it. A talented songwriter, producer and costume designer also blessed with a spine-tingling voice, she’s a quadruple threat with a laser-focused vision. After finishing her A-Levels last year, she’s been focussing on her music career, attracting a growing fanbase, dropping the critically acclaimed “Mirror Talk EP” and penning hits for the likes of Hailee Steinfeld.
Below, we catch up with the next ten talent about the making of her signature ponytail, the importance of creative control and why, despite being a quintessential Capricorn, she doesn’t get astrology.
How’s 2020 been so far?
It’s been a bit of a roller coaster. I can’t complain though, in the midst of a global pandemic and everything else that’s going on with the world, I’ve been so blessed to be able to still write and make and put out music.
When did you start making music?
I think I probably wrote my first proper song when I was eleven or something and I started producing around thirteen. When I wasn’t in school it was what I did to kill time.
Who are your biggest inspirations?
Taylor Swift was a really big influence for me when I was just getting into songwriting, her early album Fearless was mind-blowing to me when I was like eight. I look up to artists like Lorde, Banks, Haim and Jon Bellion.
How much of your own life finds its way into your music?
A lot of it! I think I find it quite hard to write songs that I can’t relate to. I try to pour in all my own feelings and thoughts into my music to make it feel as authentic as possible.
What’s your favourite spot in London?
It depends on what I’m doing but this summer I obviously couldn’t really go round to people’s houses and everything was shut, so Hampstead Heath was a go-to, to see friends and be outside
You also have writing credits for artists like Hailee Steinfeld. What’s it like juggling songwriting as well as your own musical projects?
It’s not really a juggle. At the moment I’m prioritising my own project, but if I end up writing songs that don’t feel like me and which someone else would want to sing then I love that too.
I see that you made some of your own clothes for this shoot, when did you get into fashion?
Yeah, I make a lot of my clothes for lots of my photoshoots, videos and performances. I’ve kind of always really loved clothes and I ended up taking Textiles as an A-Level in school. That’s where I learnt how to sew and pattern cut. And now, when I can, I love to make things because you can then wear clothes that are bespoke, which don’t cost a fortune and which aren’t on the high street.
You’ve also developed a signature ponytail style, how was it born?
I knew I wanted to do something consistent with my hair and I was just scrolling on Pinterest and found a few references that were similar. For one of my first ever photoshoots I showed Tomi, my hairstylist, the photos and we kind of did our own version and it’s stuck ever since.
Clearly, you have a strong hand in your own artistic and creative direction. Why is that control so important to you?
I don’t know, I’m just a bit of a control freak. I think, also, if I don’t know what I want then other people will put their own vision or interpretation onto my work, which is never gonna feel as authentic to me as when it’s actually coming from me. So I try to stay involved in all aspects of what I do.
I’ve read that you’re not into astrology…is that because you’re a Capricorn?
I have no idea… I couldn’t tell you a thing about astrology. When I went to LA it’s like star signs are their favourite topic of small talk and I just couldn’t engage at all.
What does self-care look like to you?
Spending time with friends. I’m best when I’m surrounded by my close circle that know me. Also having time alone, to read my bible, go on drives and go on walks.
And what’s the biggest thing you’ve achieved in your career?
Woah I have no idea, that’s a big question. When I was fourteen I was in a group and we supported Peter Andre on his UK tour. Having those middle-aged mummies bop along to my dance moves was a pretty surreal moment in my career.
Finally, tell us the motto you live your life by.
I don’t have a motto but in everything I do, I just do my best.
VERO is an authentic social network — no ads, no algorithms, just great content. Go to vero.co to sign up and follow @hungermagazine for more exclusive content and to catch Griff’s music takeover, which runs until October 9th.
2 October 2020