song premiere: rett smith “one to blame”


+ cory kennedy interviews the singer.

I first met Rett in a rock n' roll bar. We began very close friends and then I styled his first video 'I Swear'. His music is most refreshing to hear because it's real, it's raw and has soul, which is something I haven't heard in music in quite a while. Thankfully, and finally, it's arrived.

Check out my interview with Rett below and check out the premiere of his new song "One to Blame" below.

You're a musician; songwriter, singer, guitar player...but why? How did this all begin? 

Well, luckily I had parents that were very into blues and a lot of Hank Williams. Those older records really struck a chord with me when I was a little kid. I started traveling and living away from home for sports and writing was always my refuge from that world. Poems, short stories, lyrics; they all seemed to mesh together once I focused on finding my own melodies and began playing guitar obsessively.  In my late teens it became apparent that my only true passion was music and I kind of left everything else behind.

Why do you think you're songs have hit so hard to the public so quickly?

I feel very lucky. Being able to make a record with a guy like Joe Nicolo who has worked with so many incredible artist that I look up to (Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan) is definitely a huge factor. He’s really taken me under his wing and I can’t say enough great things about him. I’d also like like to think it’s because the songs are honest.  We made a point when recording to just play and let it be real. I wasn’t trying to hide anything or be “perfect” and I feel like that translates to the listener.

I personally can't place your music in a music genre (I haven't heard anything this refreshing in years). Please elaborate on how you concoct this genius sound. 

That’s really kind of you to say, and a very hard compliment for me to answer. I just play what I want to hear and I’ve always been very conscious to not get pigeonholed into one genre or another. I don’t really think too much about what genre this song or that song falls into. Mainly my heart lays musically with the blues and country heroes from the 40’s, 50’s and 60’s but I’ve never wanted to imitate their sound or try and call it my own. I’m into hiding some darker lyrics in with a heavy groove and seeing where it takes me.

So where does the ultimate inspiration lay for Rett Smith?

I’d say it lies in the extremes that we all experience. It doesn’t matter if its the extreme beauty of being by yourself in the middle of nowhere New Mexico or the extreme pain we feel when we’ve been wronged by someone we love. We always have to try and cope and just keep moving. A beautiful girl never seems to hurt either.

Your songwriting—where does it originate from? Are they from personal experiences?

My songs are extremely personal, although I rarely write about specific experiences as a whole. I don’t really know what’s specifically about me or not aside from a few lines in certain songs. I pull from the feelings I have in those experiences and try to tell the story that inspires me first and in it’s own way. Then all I can do is see if that resonates with anybody else.

Your hand-picked All-Star band to jam with. GO!

Jimi Hendrix, B.B King, Janis Joplin, Leon Russel and Ray Charles. Oh, and ya got to have Ginger Baker on drums! And Kanye on cowbell.

Cara Delevingne, Ashley Benson, and Agyness Deyn also star

Elisabeth Moss is trying to keep it together as punk rock artist Becky Something in the trailer for forthcoming movie Her Smell. She's surrounded by iconic faces who make up her band Something She, Gayle Rankin as Ali van der Wolff and Agyness Deyn as Marielle Hell, as she grapples with the fact that her musical prowess just doesn't draw as big a crowd as it used to.

In addition to the wavering fame, Becky is "grappling with motherhood, exhausted bandmates, nervous record company executives, and a new generation of rising talent eager to usurp her stardom," according to a press release. "When Becky's chaos and excesses derail a recording session and national tour, she finds herself shunned, isolated and alone. Forced to get sober, temper her demons, and reckon with the past, she retreats from the spotlight and tries to recapture the creative inspiration that led her band to success." And what's clear from the trailer, Moss is absolutely meant for this role, transforming into the punk on the brink of collapse.

Rounding out the cast are Ashley Benson, Cara Delevingne, and Dan Stevens. Watch the official trailer, below. Her Smell hits theaters on April 12 in New York and 14 in L.A., with "national expansion to follow."




Photo by Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images

In an acceptance speech at the BRIT Awards

As The 1975 accepted the BRIT Award for Best British group, outspoken frontman Matty Healy shared the words of journalist Laura Snapes as a way of calling out misogyny that remains ever-present in the music industry. Healy lifted a powerful quote from Snapes' coverage of allegations against Ryan Adams for The Guardian: "Male misogynist acts are examined for nuance and defended as traits of 'difficult' artists, [while] women and those who call them out are treated as hysterics who don't understand art."

Snapes reacted almost immediately on Twitter, saying she was "gobsmacked, and honoured that he'd use his platform to make this statement." Snapes had originally written the line for an interview she published with Sun Kil Moon singer Mark Kozelek back in 2015, in response to Kozelek publicly calling her a "bitch" who "totally wants to have my babies" because she requested to speak in person rather than via e-mail, which she brought up in the more recent piece on Adams. Kozelek's vile response, and the misogyny that allowed it to play out without real consequences, it could be argued, could have easily played out in the same way in 2019, which makes her reiteration of the line, and Healy's quoting it on such a large platform, all the more important.

It should be noted that back in December, Healy caught a bit of heat himself on Twitter for an interview with The Fader in which he insinuated that misogyny was an issue exclusive to hip-hop, and that rock 'n' roll had freed itself of it. He clarified at length on Twitter and apologized, saying, "I kinda forget that I'm not very educated on feminism and misogyny and I cant just 'figure stuff out' in public and end up trivializing the complexities of such enormous, experienced issues."