Based out of New York City, but with roots in Tulsa, Oklahoma, OK SWEETHEART combines the best parts of the current indie-pop genre, with a sound reminiscent of all the glorious things from mid-century pop. There’s a little bit of the 60’s, a little bit of 70’s, but above all else there’s a gorgeous, naturally quirky and unique quality that’s hard to come by. Erin Austin is OK SWEETHEART and vice versa. The winner of the 2008 John Lennon songwriting contest for pop, as well as gaining recognition as one of the ‘Most Fashionable Girls in Indie Music’ (Lucky Magazine 2011), she certainly brings a huge amount of talent to the musical table. She writes heartfelt lyrics and there’s a delightfully vintage feel that surrounds her as an artist.
OK SWEETHEART’s debut album Home was independently released on April 5th 2011, with songs on major television programmes such as 90210, Revenge and One Tree Hill, as well as having a song featured in the film Contraband. It’s safe to say that OK SWEETHEART are set to achieve great things in the future. Watch this space.
Q. How did the name OK SWEETHEART originate?
Erin: When I started performing and writing music, I went by my name Erin Austin. I liked the idea of going by a band name. So, for about a year, I tried to turn everything I read or saw into something that might work. I was in a competition called The Sound and The Jury for ACL (Austin City Limits). A friend from Oklahoma tweeted about me and started the tweet with “Oklahoma sweetheart, Erin Austin …” I thought that was a really nice way to describe my relationship with Oklahoma. I wasn’t born there but I lived there on and off for a number of years. Some of my dearest friends are there and my inspiration to start really working at writing and being a professional musician started when I was in Oklahoma. OK SWEETHEART came from that. I loved the idea that it also is a common saying which makes the name familiar to folks.
Q. How would you personally describe your sound?
Erin: The genre would be “indie-pop”. The feeling you get when you listen should be familiar and relatable. I’m influenced by a lot of 60’s and 70’s folk and pop songwriters. Harry Nilsson, Randy Newman, Neil Young, The Beattles, The Zombies … they have tunes I really really love. When you hear it, you hear a Billie Holiday meets Feist meets Adelle type of vocal sound with piano driven 5 piece band, string quartet and quirky instruments.
Q. What’s been your best musical experience to date?
Erin: This is hard to say. Moments can be big or small but significant regardless. Great experiences can happen when I’m all dressed up on stage or in my jams sitting alone at the piano. There are so many crowds I loved playing for and so many songs I’ve written and really felt while writing. The great moments are in those places and everywhere in between. It’s hard to compare and quantify them.
Q. You’ve performed at a number of festivals. Which festival was your favourite?
Erin: Doe Bay. The END.
Q. Where in the world do you most want to tour?
Erin: Everywhere in the world!!!
Q. You’re currently planning your sophomore album. Can you let us know a little about what we can expect from it?
Erin: There will be songs with lyrics and music. The rest is up to the producer, the band and the moment. We’ll see 🙂
Q. If you could tour with any other band of your choice, who would it be?
Erin: I like the idea of Bonnie Raitt or Randy Newman. Coldplay or Mumford and Sons would be fun as well! I don’t know, there’s a lot of bands out there I’d love to play shows with!
Q. In your opinion, what’s the best album to ever be released?
Erin: I have no idea how to answer that! What day? What’s the weather like out side? It all depends, ya know? I’ve always loved Neil young’s Harvest, The Beatles album Revolver and last but not least Randy Newman’s Little Criminals!!
Q. When writing songs, where do you draw your inspiration?
Erin: Everything, really. I could get inspired by the way someone says something, or a scenario I see while at the grocery store. It comes from experiencing the ups and downs of life.
You can listen to more music by OK SWEETHEART at www.oksweetheart.com