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Entering fantasy with Bonnie Banane

“Excitement is the genre”

Bonnie Banane has this enigmatic aura that leaves you feeling totally intoxicated. Fueled by excitement and a creative flourish toward fantasy, Banane finds ways to push those darn boundaries on every level. Resisting being confined to a specific genre, she musically shape-shifts between the worlds of psychedelic pop, R&B, rap, neo-soul, jazz and much, much more.

Mixing her own identity into a melting pot of experimental sounds and visuals, we see different versions of herself popping up throughout her discography. Opening the door to absurdity, the listener witnesses the weird and wonderful morph into something beautiful and infectious. Since her debut album ‘Sexy Planet’ in 2020, Bonnie has been on go mode; producing music nonstop – and we’re not complaining.

Today she announces her newest project ‘NINI’ which will be coming to us on 5th April. But to keep us at bay as we patiently wait, Banane blessed us with her latest single ‘Red Flags’. Eager to get as much Banane content as we can in the meantime, we caught up with her to discuss her unique creative process, early influences, and some invaluable advice for new artists 😉

Hey Bonnie, Let’s get straight into it. What were your influences growing up?
Mostly Funk, Rnb, New Jack, and New Soul American artists, my dad had me listen to MTV videos, and go on record shop wanderings.

Nice. Has the music scene in Paris shaped you as an artist, and if so in what way?
It certainly has! Hanging out with different people with different aspirations and styles throughout the years. Observing and paying attention to every single thing. Traveling abroad also shaped me a lot, leaving the city, and coming back here with new eyes and new energy.

What is your relationship with costumes, make-up, and accessories, within your creative vision?
Let’s say I have two loves and they’re drastically different. One is my sporadic relationship with gowns. I’m deeply attracted by extravaganza, costumes, and metamorphosis for all stage representations and videos. But you can mostly see me wearing the same vinted comfort clothes that I’ve been wearing for the last 7 years.

Gotta have your comfort clothes too! Would you say that the visual aspects of your work are an extension of your music?
The videos certainly are! Many of the ideas for them already emerged in the lyrics stage. But my photos are rarely an extension, they are really their own universe.  

Interpretation and role-playing seem to be important in your work, are these characters different versions of you or are they total inventions?
They’re just an expression of a fantasy, a projection I make. I’m thinking more in terms of silhouette than in terms of characters. It’s always me, each time.

Where do you find your inspiration?
Solitude. Landscapes that make me feel like a visitor. Company. Literature. Movies. Stuff I hear. Scenes I’m a witness of.

What can you tell us about your forthcoming projects in 2024?
I simply can’t wait for my music to come out and I can’t wait to go further on stage. I’m aiming to get better. Also thinking about other projects than music. There’s so much stuff to do here on earth!

Your music has been described as ‘experimental pop’, why is it important to experiment and push boundaries inside the space of today’s popular music?
I still don’t know what genre I fit in best. I feel it’s just convenient but we never really intend to do a special kind of music in particular in the studio. It’s just energy gathering and people who like stuff in common making music together. Excitement is the genre!

If you could only listen to one album for the rest of your life, what would it be?
‘Journey in Satchidananda – Alice Coltrane’

Any advice for artists who are starting out?
Never listen to what people say and don’t listen to my advice just jump right in. Don’t be afraid. Masturbate.

Amazing, I think that’s definitely what new artists need to hear! Thanks for chatting with us today and can’t wait for the new album <3


Words by Dexter Burningham

Images courtesy of the artist