[PREMIERE] Pop Baby Sage Boatright’s New Single, “Rotten”
We’re at a dimly lit recording studio in Los Angeles called New Monkey Studios. It has little Christmas lights strung all around, and a stack of really old vintage amps that make for a lounge-y clubhouse feel. I watch as recording artist Sage Boatright tells her producer something she would like to try on one of her tracks. We’re listening back to a new track called “IAFWU”, and when asked if I knew what it meant, I embarrassingly show my age (I’m not good with these abbreviations).
Sage, who’s 13, corrects me, it means “I ain’t effing with you”. But she doesn’t want to say the actual “eff word” in the song. Her producer and manager discuss that maybe she could say the full phrase just one time on the bridge of the song — and Sage LOVES the idea. Our only problem, is that Sage is just thirteen, and is concerned her mom might not approve of the language.
Despite being somewhat worried, and with the urging of all of us in the room, she decides to be a rebel, and does it anyway. She pops into the booth and lays down a few versions of “I ain’t fucking with you!” When we listen back to the newly recorded phrase, she giggles with excitement. She loves it. And the rest of us do too.
Besides being a singer/songwriter, she’s also an actress, and obsessed with makeup brands and artists like Jeffree Star. She then tells me how much she loves My Chemical Romance and the Black Parade album, and I suddenly completely forget about her age.
We listen back to a few more tracks — and without skipping a beat, she tells her producer and manager a few more things she’d like to try, more succinctly and articulately than most adults could, even if they tried. I’m baffled by this kid’s ability to know exactly what she wants and where, and her coolness factor at the age of 13 are only the things of pre-pubescent dreams.
Check out the premiere of Sage’s new single, “Rotten” and then check out the Q&A with her below!
First of all, we need the origin story — where did you come from? How did you realize you could make music?
Originally, I’m from Amarillo, Texas. Basically, I’ve been singing for as long as I can remember. I think the fact that I was meant to be a musician really became apparent to my family and I when I started singing in my grandpa’s church and writing music at the age of 7. Eventually, we ended up moving out to Cali and the rest is history!
What are some of your artistic influences?
Some of my biggest musical inspirations include Michael Jackson, My Chemical Romance, The Weeknd, and Johnny Cash because they all write songs with a lot of feeling, and I like that. My biggest makeup inspirations would have to be Glam & Gore, MadeYewLook by Lex, and Jeffree Star because they’re so creative and have bold choices when it comes to makeup.
If you were to describe your sound, like Cyndi Lauper meets Guitar metal, what would it be? If you were to tell someone about your music that hasn’t heard it – how would you want it described?
I think my music is best described as “alternative pop,” kind of like The Weeknd meets Drake meets Gwen Stefani type of sound.
You’ve performed a lot before you moved to Los Angeles, what were some of the songs you covered and what were your favorites? Did you ever play any original songs?
When living in Texas, I performed at countless rodeos and churches. I also performed a lot of country music while living there, which I find ironic since my sound is the total opposite today! Some of my favorite songs I sang during this period of my life include “Stuck Like Glue” by Sugarland and “White Liar” by Miranda Lambert. Also, yes, I occasionally got to perform my own songs, but I didn’t get the privilege to do it all the time until just recently.
When you are working on a new song, where do you pull inspiration from?
Since I’m an actress, I’ve learned how to think how someone else might think, and I pull inspiration from there. I also have a lot of friends in different types of cultures and cities, and I hear experiences that they tell me about. I take inspiration from there sometimes as well. Aside from all this, I do have my own experiences to write about. Actually, both my new songs “Rotten” and “IAFWU” were written after I went through a bad breakup.
Since you are a makeup artist and actress, do those inform or influence your music in any way?
Sometimes, but going back to my previous answer, I usually find inspiration in real-life experiences more than anything. However, acting and makeup both help me a lot when I need to portray a lot of feeling in a song, a music video, or a live performance.
Do you have a favorite make up artist that you follow or a favorite line of makeup that you can’t live without?
Yes, of course! I’m a huge Jeffree Star fan, and I don’t know how I’d live in a world without Jeffree Star Cosmetics and Two Faced Cosmetics.
Do you believe that every song is about something? Or do you think songwriters just write what sounds cool?
I think it’s a little bit of both. For me, sometimes I write songs that have vague meanings so that my listeners can interpret the song however they want. This way, my songs become more relatable to everyone, and I like that. Other times, I write a song about a specific situation in my life so that people can relate to me personally.
What are you most excited about with releasing this EP?
I’m most excited for my listeners to get to hear my new sound. It took me quite some time to find myself, and my sound and then it took some getting used to until I could become 100% comfortable with myself. Now, I’ve become a new and improved version of Sage, and I can’t wait for the world to hear it.
Do you have any favorite tracks? If so, which ones and why?
My favorite song off my EP has got to be “Rotten.” Again, I wrote this after a bad breakup that left me pretty heart broken and “Rotten” was what brought me, and my confidence back up. I think “Rotten” is such a girl empowerment song, and I just love that.
What kind of fans are you hoping to connect with through your music?
I think my music appeals most to teenagers and young adults and because of this, I keep a large subject variety in my music so that it can be relatable to people of all ages!
You are also an actress, what have some of your favorite roles been? And what would be your dream role?
My favorite role has got to be my role as “Riley” in a YouTube web series I did awhile back called “Boozy Mom”! I usually play the “girl next door” type of role, but my dream role would be would be any character in “American Horror Story” or “Scream Queens.”
Most embarrassing thing that’s happened to you while on tour or while performing?
I’ve never had an embarrassing experience while performing, but I have had a straight up embarrassing performance. When I was pretty young, probably 6 or 7, I insisted on performing and dancing to “Let’s Chill (Ice Cream Freeze)” by Hannah Montana at a big venue. Although everyone in the audience was seemingly into it, the memory of the fact that I even did that haunts me.
What’s next after the EP release? Is there a tour planned?
I would love to go on tour, but as of right now, I’m predominantly working on generating good music as much as possible!
Where can we find out more about you? Social media links?
Instagram: @its_just_sage, Youtube: youtube.com/sageboatright,
Twitter: twitter.com/sageboatright, Facebook: facebook.com/sageboatrightfans/
Photo by Collect1vemind