Our one to watch in 2018 is BAUM.
The Los Angeles-based pop angel takes control with her defiant anthem ‘This Body’. A song inspired by personal experiences with cat calling and a struggle with an eating disorder, it sends a hugely empowering message.
“One morning, while I was walking to the USC practice rooms on South Figueroa, I got aggressively cat called about my “fat ass.” I’m a fiery person. I talk back. I’m “sassy” and I’m not shy around strangers. I’m typically not someone who is great at “taking the higher road” or letting things go, but in that situation, I felt like a delicate flower. When a man confronts you without batting an eyelash, verbally scrutinizing your body, you feel like nothing. This man was asserting his dominance over me, letting me know that he was entitled to my body — looking, commenting, maybe even touching. So, I went inside the practice rooms with my face red and hot. I grew up in New York City. This was not the first time I had been cat called on a street corner, but for some reason it particularly bothered me that day. It was kind of a perfect storm because I felt like I wanted to yell or cry or something, and I had literally just stepped into a practice room with a piano. I started saying things that I wanted to hear — “I got my power,” “this body is my home” etc. Looking back on that experience, I guess writing the song was my way of getting my power back in the moment.
I recovered from an eating disorder in the summer of 2016, which is when I wrote this song. My whole life I grew up completely buying into the media’s definition of beauty. I thought that I needed to be rail thin (not my body type) and utterly despised any fat on my stomach. I started my first diet around the age of ten, and my battle with food, guilt, and self loathing continued on throughout the next ten+ years. For me, performing “This Body” is a reminder to myself that I’m sexy and I’m beautiful and I have all of my confidence. That’s why I start every show with it. It’s not just like I’m telling these lyrics to other people, but I’m sort of talking to myself as well.
My sophomore year of college, I was extremely lucky in that so many positive elements aligned themselves in my life. I had a boyfriend who loved my body and reassured me while I put on much needed weight and got increasingly healthier. I moved into an apartment with friends who were like family and were more supportive than I could have ever hoped for. That year, I also found the body positivity movement on social media. I read articles and watched videos of women talking about the stuff I had never been able to articulate and would never have felt comfortable articulating. All of these factors in my life came together and really allowed me to grow and to love myself. That kind of opened a door for me and inspired me to write about being a woman in very literal terms.
Honestly, my hope for this song is just that someone, somewhere can listen to it and feel what I feel hearing powerful women talk about loving themselves. When I see a quote that makes smile or a picture of someone owning their body, I feel companionship, knowing that we’re all in it together, and I feel empowered myself. If I can do that for someone else, then I will know I have accomplished something huge.”
Sounds like: Adele, Austra, YONAKA, MUNA, HAIM, Adele