Billie – born Isabella Sophie Tweddle – got her early start in music thanks to parents who surrounded her with the music of Nick Drake, John Martyn, Joni Mitchell, Joan Armatrading, Kate Bush, Loudon Wainwright III and northern folk artist Chris Wood (who once told a nine-year-old Billie to “go for it!”).
With her fourth record, Drop Cherries, now out in the world, Billie Marten has at last learned to stop thinking about what others want to hear and has finally started to trust her own instincts.
Drop Cherries is a series of vignettes highlighting different pieces of a relationship, while trying to fit them together. From celebrating moments of the mundane (“Just Us”), through deep existential questioning (“Devil Swim,” “Acid Tooth,” and “Arrows”), to the final resolve which is the pure simplicity of sharing a moment with someone you love (“Drop Cherries,” “I Bend To Him”).
It’s often the case that each record has to be a new ‘statement’ for the artist, a re-branding, a progression. But Billie Marten’s statement is always the same: “I’m simply searching for clarity. I’m re-examining the same feelings I had when I first started writing: I feel different to others, so I’ll write about what that’s like and see if I can work out why that is. If I ever do, maybe I’ll stop writing.”