MEET PETITE MELLER IN OUR EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW
Photographer Eliot Lee Hazel
Hair Prestom Wada
Stylist and designer Aliona Kononova
Assistant Photographer Benjamin Seroussi
Words by Alina Ferraro
Art muse, citizen of the world, philosopher, Petite Meller is bringing back intelligence into pop music. Her single " Baby Love" landed her a spot on the UK top 20 as well as being nominated for the 2017 MTV European Awards . Born in Paris, raised in Tel Aviv, and now residing in Los Angeles, Petite Meller is a pioneer of a nomadic life style where there are no cultural barriers. In her wonderfully creative visuals for her songs, she is taking us on a journey into her subconscious. There are strong essentials and high concepts behind the visuals that are just as important as the music itself. There are no barriers in her nouveau jazzy pop songs either as she mixes African drums with saxophone often with French chanson melodies likeCharles Aznavour and Brothers that her mother would listen to. With Freud and Lacan influences, Petite's signature is a symbol of showing proudly trauma. She is.
1. In the video from your song “The Flute”, you find a deep connection with Mongolian girls that are wearing the same rouge blush on their cheeks. The message is wonderful, finding your own tribe by loving yourself and others. Have you ever been to Mongolia before the shoot?
Mongolia is endless green, reindeers, Yurts and horse milk. It was my first time. The Mongolian flute is the instrument that inspired me to travel there. My ear sends me far away. The sound is what I follow.
2.Do you ever imagine a place and then you search for it in reality?
Yes, I always imagine the whole video in my mind, then find it. I have step-grandparents in a retirement home in Miami, then in the music for “Barbaric” I went and found them. I am visioning my next place for my up and coming video.I truly believe someone sends me to places I am about to discover, people I need to meet and create with.
3. I love the outfit you are wearing on the cover of “Lil Empire”. Especially the hat, what is the meaning behind it?
I wanted to create a new folklore. The pink conus hats were inspired by a Russian Ballet composed by Stravinsky for Ninjinsnky’s underground dance called “The Rite of Spring”. My choreographer sent it to me for inspiration. “The Flute” reminded her of this dance. I saw it and I was mind blown, you could play my songs and in the background the dancers. It fit together like it was made for each other. This exemplifies the idea of sacrificing yourself and following the music.
4.When did you know it should make the cover?
This one seemed to be timeless taken by Napoleon Habeica on set, representing the traveling like an explorer discovering new lands.
5. In “Baby Love” you lift your foot like the pink flamingos, in “Barbaric” you are on your fours and lick the side of your hand.
How did you create these ideas?
It’s a feeling of solidarity, I like to be part of groups, to be something greater
than just human.
6. If you would come back as an animal in a next life, what would you like it to be?
7. “Milk Bath” was filmed between Senegal and Germany and the music was recorded between London and Johannesburg.
Do you make an exact plan in advance on your final work or do you let go and changes can be made even on the day of the
Everything is planned down to all the details. But then magical moments can happen like the herd of white cows that came out of nowhere. The directors love to play absurd coincidence situations. We love to find the cast on location, sometimes the people who live there just happen to pass by, sometimes we find locals just reading a book in the cafe we shoot. It can seem random but it’s not.
8. The song Icebear is in German. How did you have this idea? How many languages can you speak? Do you only dream in
I know French, English and Hebrew. German I learned for the video with
Joe Fleich, a singer I featured for. My dreams seem muted and maybe that’s why I need to score and compose for them.
9. We can’t wait for your next album. Can you tell us about it?I
It’s different, this time I visit myself, my deep and darker pain to redeem through music. It deals with the alien feeling I experience sometimes here on Earth, and the wish to embrace and to accept it. The sound will be more grandiose and classical. It has a new song written by the genius Diane Warren who wrote
“I don’t wanna miss a thing” by Aerosmith.
And finally where is the place to eat french fries in Paris?
The French Macdonald’s is very good, but my favorite would have to be from “In and Out”.