Caturday with Kelly Lee Owens

Katie Rawsthorne

We caught up with singer, writer and producer Kelly Lee Owens to talk about everything from Bjork to travel to haircuts along with listening to her weekend playlist that she put together for us.

Firstly, can you describe your music in three words? 
Not really, but today maybe:
Expansive, analogue, exploratory.
So earlier this year we saw you re-imagining Bjorks ‘Arisen my Senses’. Can you tell us a little more about your relationship with Bjork and perhaps the ways in which she has played a role in your own music?
She’s such a spiritual creature, seemingly true to herself, a great producer, editor, all round creator & artist – it’s hard NOT to be inspired by somebody like that. In terms of the remix – we had met briefly a few times & then after playing Anxi on a couple of mixes, she asked her label to get in touch about a remix. Then I received some of the most mind-blowing stems I’ve ever heard – and instead of doing standard techno remix, I basically re-imagined the song!! Forever grateful that she entrusted me enough to give it a go! 
Are there any other successful women in music that you feel have inspired your work? 
There are so many women in music who do inspire but really for me, it’s often the incredibly strong women in my family & close friendship circle – they reflect back to me the immense power women hold –  the way we rally together to hold space for one another it inspires me every day.
You have a lot of travel in your upcoming schedule. Do you feel travel influences your music at all or is it more innate than that to you? 
Travel can be such an expansive experience for sure, but atm I’m so in-and-out that I don’t get to explore so much & therefore connect. The last time I was able to do that was when I spent an extra 10 days in LA in March. I drove to Big Sur with friends, swam in the ocean & camped in the Red Wood forests, hiked up to a waterfall & felt totally & utterly connected.
If you could have a dinner party with five other artists who would they be (past or present)? 
Kusama, Fela Kuti, Bjork, Nina Simone, David Bowie
You seem to garner a lot of interest in your rather iconic short hairstyle, can you tell us more about your personal style?
Hah! This keeps coming up – I seem to have the indie equivalent of ‘The Rachael’ – people keep tagging me in stuff saying they’ve gone for “The KLO” – for me it’s literally about the easiest / most natural & empowering expression of myself i.e. me being lazy, doing absolutely nothing to my hair and not thinking too much about image – so if other people can connect to their own empowerment and expression through their outer appearance in that way, then I approve!
What does a day off look like for Kelly Lee Owens? 
Me trying to meditate in some form (doesn’t always happen), trying to get out in to nature, trying not to answer emails / think about all the things I should be working on. Seeking out great food, catching up on latest energetic astrological forecasts, burning Palo Santo & sage, witchy shit, I guess…
What in your upcoming schedule are you most excited for next?
There are few personal musical projects I am working on that are exciting me! Also a few incredible support shows I’ve just said yes to. Next week I also head to USA to play for Pitchfork which should be great! Oh yeah, and I’ve started writing the second album – eek!!
Listen to the new remix of “Arisen My Senses” by Bjork

Click to listen to
Kelly Lee Owen’s
Caturday playlist

Kelly’s live UK headline date is November 15th at Village Underground, buy tickets here