The singer serving the relatable realness she’d once been searching for.
Jumper and trousers CHANEL, boots NATACHA MARRO
Taken from the Summer 2019 issue of Wonderland. Order your copy of the issue now.
“I think we’ve all cried on the toilet and felt like a psycho bitch,” Cari Fletcher muses. “I mean sometimes you’ve got to have that daily loo cry, right?” The singer-songwriter — who performs under just her surname — is describing that all too familiar feeling of being in the midst of heartbreak, when sometimes the only thing that can help is a quick bathroom sob. We’ve all been there, hon.
After moving across the Hudson River from her hometown of New Jersey to study at New York University, FLETCHER experienced her first taste of heartache. “New York City really has a way of drilling you down to absolutely nothing so that you have to completely rebuild again,” she explains during our transatlantic phone call. “I lost myself there and I found myself there. I fell in love for the first time in the city and it was a relationship that just really rocked me and it messed me up for a long time.”
It’s this experience of getting her heart broken and subsequently rebuilding that has formed the core inspiration for her music ever since. “The only way that I was able to get through it was to write about it,” she begins, going on to admit that it took her to get to the “angry stage” of the post- break-up emotional rollercoaster before she could actually put her feelings onto paper. Moving to LA and taking two years to perfect her message, she’s arrived armed with a brand new project set for release later this year that details all the #feels that she went through.
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Taking us on her journey, the new record offers snapshots into FLETCHER’s story of her whirlwind relationship. In the record’s first single, “Undrunk”, she perfectly sums up wanting to banish previous feelings for your ex with the iconic opening line: “I wish I could get a little undrunk so I could uncall you, at five in the morning I would unfuck you.” Another release, “If You’re Gonna Lie”, draws on that unsettling sense when you know something’s not right but you don’t want to accept it. “It’s about that relationship that you just held on to for too long,” she describes. “It’s kind of in that denial phase when stuff is really tough and you know that they’re probably cheating on you and shady shit’s going on, but you’d rather have them stay with you than face the fact that you shouldn’t be together.”
Like her previous 2016 project, “Finding Fletcher”, the new songs show her penchant for making poignant pop bops that pack just as much punch in their catchy melodies as their relatable lyricism. Working with production master Malay (who’s worked with the likes of Zayn, Lorde and Frank Ocean), the three released tracks weave minimal hip-hop elements, lush vocals, and undeniably pop beats to form what have been quite rightly described as three of the breakout pop songs of the year. However, it is undeniably within their storytelling that FLETCHER really shines. “If my one contribution can be that telling my story makes one person feel a little less insane, that’s all I’ve ever wanted to do,” she says. “If I can be that for somebody, that’s the fucking shit.”
Being someone’s sonic therapy is the position FLETCHER’s been poised for since the beginning of her career. After growing up in a non-musical household (“My parents had two CDs: Céline Dion and Bob Marley!”) she was desperate to find artists that she could relate to. “The examples that we had for female pop stars made me feel like I was never really represented or that I fit in, and I never really saw myself within any female artist,” she tells me. “I kind of made it a mission from when I was really little to be the artist that I needed when I was a little girl.”
As an openly queer woman who wears her heart on her sleeve, she’s since strived to become that example that she craved when she was younger: using gender-neutral pronouns in her music and unapologetically being herself throughout. “I just want to be a real representation of what it means to be a woman in 2019,” she asserts. “Just because I cry and I’m vulnerable, it doesn’t mean I’m not a badass will-fuck-your-day- up kind of chick. Just because I say no or speak my mind, it doesn’t mean I’m a bitch. The brand of FLETCHER is just that I’m a fucking human being who experiences everything that we’ve all been through. I’m just lucky enough to have a platform to share that.”
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