Boo Seeka is an artist that has continually grown and transformed into the undeniable force he is now. His live show is a euphoric experience that collides music and emotions together so wholeheartedly. It’s not just a gig, or a show, it is an experience, and he’s worked heart to get it to that place.
His sophomore record ‘Between The Head & The Heart’ is a body of work that is going to allow him to take his live show even further into that realm, and create something very special. On the back of performing at Coachella with Hayden James, Boo is at the top of his game. These songs are sonically cinematic, anthemic, and ultimately euphoric, and then lyrically he’s more honest and vulnerable than he’s ever been.
I recently chatted with Boo Seeka about the cinematic world that is built within his new record ‘Between The Head & The Heart’, explore tracks like ‘Superstar’ and ‘I Like It Like’, and reflect on playing Coachella with Hayden James. Check out the full chat BELOW;
THOMAS BLEACH: Your new record ‘Between The Head & The Heart’ is a dreamy and cinematic body of work that holds a lot of particular emotions and feelings. When you listen back to it now from start to finish, what are the overwhelming feelings or thoughts you have?
BOO SEEKA: Honestly, each of these tracks are sort of like looking at myself in the mirror. Each song is a moment in time that represents how I was feeling at some time over the last 24 months or so. Whether it’s happy, sad, inspiration, reflection, or even just trying to calm myself down, there is a song for it. I love listening to these tracks because it’s like one big therapy session.
TB: ‘Superstar’ is a song that immediately stands out with its infectious and slinky production, as well its strong lyrics which is where the album’s title comes from. So can you explain the creative process behind this track in particular?
BS: You’ve picked one of my favourites and that means a lot to me. This track was written probably halfway through recording the album. Let’s just say this one was a tough therapy session. All of my frustrations hit an all-time high.
I will never tell a listener exactly what the song means to me because I think music should be consumed anyway the listener wants it to be. I want it to mean whatever they feel necessary to have a connection with it. I love hearing all the different meanings my tracks have to people and reminds me every time how powerful art can be.
TB: ‘I Like It Like’ also impresses with its really gritty production which comes in and contrasts an earlier lightness. What were some of the specific references and mood board inspirations you had for this track?
BS: I was in the studio with my friend Luke Palmer. He had the ‘I Like It Like’ sample, and I instantly fell in love with it. I laid down the vocal & sent it to my manager Cohen. This song is his favourite from the record, and he basically told me not to change a thing. At that stage I was humming some of the vocal lines, because I hadn’t figured out some of the lyrics yet.
I really love the Billie Eilish, spooky aspects to this song! It’s pretty diverse to some of the others, but I’m really proud of how it turned out.
TB: When you look at the opening track ‘Dream’ next to the closing track ‘Let Me In’ do you see or feel any direct correlations with them and the journey you went on physically with these songs in-between them?
BS: Honestly the hardest collection of songs I’ve ever had to live through, but it has been very rewarding in the end for me. I’m not going to lie, my life has been a mess for the last two years, and I think it’s been hard for me to publicly say that.
This record is always going to symbolise this rough time for me but it will also be the record that pulled me out of it and record it with people I now call family. If it wasn’t for these two things I really don’t know where I would be and I’m very thankful for that.
TB: You wrote another record before scrapping it and then writing this one. What song on this album was the reaffirming moment for you that this was the path you needed to be on musically, and why?
BS: ‘I Like It Like’! There was a turning moment for me when I was looking at myself in a mirror saying “what am I doing here”, and I felt like the me in the mirror was talking back telling me how to get out of this rut.
I sat down and wrote a letter to myself which ended up being most of the lyrics for this song and gave me the courage to write the twelve messages I wrote on this record .
TB: What song went through the most versions to get it to where it is now on the record, and why?
BS: That would be ‘Happen’. It was the most frustrating song for us on the record by far. We didn’t know what direction to take the music, and we tried at least 20 versions before heading in the direction it ended up being.
I laugh every time I hear this song. I know this is already some people’s favourite, and it just makes me smile and takes me back to Matt, Jay and I silently looking at each other in the studio very confused.
TB: Earlier this year you played Coachella with Hayden James which was HUGE. While everyone thinks festival touring is super glamorous, what was one of the most un-glam things that happened during one of the Coachella weekends?
BS: *Laughs* That would have to be the security. I understand that this festival site is so big. I mean, honestly, it’s like a whole town, and the backstage is so confusing, but you would think the security would have been briefed or had a map to show you where to get to things backstage. They sent us on a wild goose chase for two and a half hours trying to find the right exit out of the festival. And by the time we found it we realised we had been next to it at least ten times, but were told to go over to the other side where they would tell us to go back to where we just came from.
TB: Your recent collaboration ‘Free’ with Hayden James is one of the most stunning moments on his new album ‘LIFTED’. Earlier this year he told us that there are like 30 versions of the song. Do you remember hearing one of the versions and thinking absolutely not, or thinking that it may have been “the one” over the final album version?
BS: *Laughs* He is correct, although there might have been more. It was really hard because every version had something new to give, and was and was a different version. The ten-minute version was nearly the one for us as it gave room for the song to breathe, and we both seemed to get lost in it without feeling like it was a long song.
But being the genius he is, as soon as Jay and I heard the version that ended up on the record we both knew that was the one. We are all very proud of this track.
TB: Hayden described ‘Free’ as very cinematic, and honestly when I listen to ‘Between The Head & The Heart’ that sentiment is echoed as your new album also holds a very visual and cinematic identity. If you could insert this album as a soundtrack to any movie or tv show, what one would you choose and why?
BS: Wow I love this question. I’m going to say ‘Into The Wild’. This movie to me is very cinematic and the story line has a lot of ups and downs which I think would be great for this album. It’s also one of my favourites, and I already love the soundtrack.
My close second would be ‘The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty’. It has all the same vibes for me, but in a very different way, and I see myself in this movie every time I watch it.
TB: Let’s play a quick game of rapid fire questions about the album. Are you ready?
BS: Ok I’m going rapid fire on these because I’ll overthink them if I don’t. I seem to do that a lot and anyone that is in my life will tell you the same thing.
TB: The emoji that best describes my new album ‘Between The Head & The Heart’ is…
BS: This is a tough one but I’m going to say the hand shaking one. To me it symbolises the connection with someone and something or agreeing or accepting changes with life itself.
TB: The song that nearly didn’t make the album was…
BS: That would definitely have to be ‘Let Me in’. It was a very hard song for me to personally hear back through the speakers and something I didn’t know if I was ready to put out into the world. It’s by far the hardest song that I’ve ever written
TB: The song I’m most looking forward to performing live would be…
BS: I think it’s going to be ‘Real’. I can see this one being a massive singalong which is always a good time at live shows and it’s full of celebration for me. But I could be wrong. My favourite might change after the first few shows of the tour.
TB: The first song from the album I’d want you to play to your friends if they hadn’t heard my new music yet would be…
BS: I’m going to get greedy here and pick half of two tracks. ‘I Like it Like’ and ‘Real’. To me these two tracks symbolise the journey from dark to seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, even if you’re still not there yet. It also shows the dark and summer vibes this record goes through from the start till the end of the record with lyrics I feel are going to be consumed in so many different ways and I’m proud of that.
‘Between The Head & The Heart’ is out now!