Interview: Tessa Violet Discusses Her New Single, ‘I like (the idea of) You’

Photo: Brian Gahan

Singer and songwriter, Tessa Violet, is releasing each single off of her new album, Bad Ideas, one song at a time, starting with her new single, “I Like (the idea of) You,” which released on May 3rd.
Tessa recently sat down with Glitter to talk about her new single, the songwriting process, her musical influences, and her definition of self-love. Read on to see what Tessa has planned for the upcoming year.

GLITTER: How would you describe your sound?

TESSA: Thoughtful lyrics over catchy melodies!

GLITTER: What can you tell us about your new single, “I Like (the idea of) You”

TESSA: I’d been on a few dates with this guy that I knew was maybe not a great idea, and I had this sense of maybe I should feel embarrassed or be more sensible about it. But it didn’t make me feel embarrassed, it made me feel sexy and powerful. So what if I could logically see it wasn’t headed anywhere? I like the idea of it and I’m going to enjoy that.

GLITTER: Where do your musical influences come from?

TESSA: I love wordy pop music. Fun.’s “Aim and Ignite”, Miniature Tiger’s “Tell it the Volcano”, and Hellogoodbye’s “Would it Kill You” were and probably still are huge in shaping my early writing and to this day three of my favorite albums. Now I love artists like Lorde, Taylor Swift, Bleachers. I love songs that take my breath away with a lyrical turn.

GLITTER: Do you play any instruments?

TESSA: I play guitar, and I write on piano sometimes but I never play it in my shows because I’m not very good at it, haha.

GLITTER: What is the songwriting process like for you?

TESSA: I start with one phrase, usually the first line of the first verse but occasionally the chorus. A lot of my songs are a spill of consciousness so it’s most natural to just start at the beginning. Then I sit down at my piano or guitar and just sing things over the chords. What feels natural to come next? Try new melodies on. For me it’s important that the lyrics and melody come together, that way they can inform each other and feel natural, as if they were always meant to be together.

GLITTER: Will we see a full-length album from you soon?

TESSA: Right now I’m releasing my album, Bad Ideas, one song at a time, with the third track, “I Like (the idea of) You,” coming May 3rd!

GLITTER: Favorite place you’ve ever performed at?

TESSA: Mercury Lounge in NYC last December was really special! That was my first NYC headline and it was a blast. I also loved getting to open for COIN this February. Performing is always a blast though, it’s hard to pick just one!

GLITTER: How do you stay grounded in this business?

TESSA: I think it helps that I did music independently before really stepping in to “the business.” I already knew who I was as an artist, and what mattered to me as a person. I also have good people around me.

GLITTER: What positive message do you hope to send women who follow you?

TESSA: I wouldn’t say I have one specific message, but in this moment I guess I’d say trying is winning. The path of learning is full of failure but you never know what you could do until you try!

GLITTER: Many women are coming forward in media and standing up for their rights as women. How important is this issue to you?

TESSA: Women’s rights are human rights!

GLITTER: What has been the best surprise anyone has ever given you?

TESSA: My roommate threw me a surprise birthday party last year that blew my mind. COMPLETELY surprised me and was such a great moment.

GLITTER: Who is your dream collaboration with?

TESSA: Haha probably Jack Antonoff!

GLITTER: Glitter has a Celebrity #SelfLoveCampaign, what’s self-love mean to you?

TESSA: Self-love to me usually looks like forgiveness and accepting myself as a flawed and mistake-making human. I can be really hard on myself and I’m loving myself best when I make mistakes and still love myself <3

GLITTER: What do you have planned for the upcoming year?

TESSA: Releasing more music!!! So excited for the May 3rd release and the upcoming music video 🙂

GLITTER: How can fans follow you?

TESSA: Find me everywhere at @tessaviolet but Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube especially.