Q&A: Betty Who
Oh, great question. I think it depends who you ask. If you ask me I’d be like, “Oh my gosh, I’m a gazelle.” If you ask my roommate she’d say, “She’s the worst.” I just like to move and I’m super excitable onstage, so my band and I tend to jump around a lot. I just dance however it feels right and hope everyone isn’t low-key making fun of me.
Even though your music is upbeat, the songs can be fairly personal at times. Are you someone who grew up keeping a diary?
I don’t think I kept a diary, but I should have. The problem I always had is when you write something down and then go back a month later and read what you wrote don’t you always feel like your problems were so insignificant and then get upset you spent so much time wallowing in them? You’re so honest because it’s like, “No one else is going to read this.” But then even you don’t want to read it.
Do you ever have the same issue with your songs?
When I’m writing songs I’ll have that little moment where it’s like, “Jesus, that’s really personal,” but then you spend so much time with it and it means something different to every person who hears it. I’m so affected by what other people feel while they’re listening to the songs that it starts to become my story as opposed to what I wrote it about in that moment.
It’s great when someone can take ownership of something that comes from such a personal place. Is there a song you’ve have that kind of relationship with?
Oh sure. There’s this Missy Higgins song called “They Weren’t There,” and also “Gravity” by Sara Bareilles and “One and Only” by Adele. They're these songs where these women are pouring their hearts out, and because it’s so honest you feel so connected with it. That’s what I strive for in my music.
Is Paul Hogan as big a deal in Australia as I hope he is?
You know, to be perfectly honest, not particularly [laughs]. There was a lot of [“Crocodile Hunter”] Steve Irwin stuff though. I remember the day Steve Irwin died and it was devastating. There was an announcement at my school. It was pretty intense.
Betty Who, 9 p.m. Jan. 16 at Schubas. $15.