The Effortlessly Cool Debut of Rubberband Girl

Caitlyn Scarlett has spent years working behind the scenes in the music industry, collaborating with the likes of Little Simz, Ms Banks and Rudimental. Now the vocalist has decided to launch her own music career, fronting the band Rubberband Girl. The group have just released their debut single ‘South Suburban Weekend’, which showcases a unique concoction of indie-pop, acid jazz and trip-hop. Inspired by Scarlett’s ambitions to leave England’s countryside and venture to the ‘Big City’, the track serves as a love letter to the artist’s youth.  

Having only shared two songs on Soundcloud prior, Scarlett drew remarkable comparisons to Susanne Sundfør and Kate Bush, but after hearing ‘South Suburban Weekend’, you can see why. The artist’s voice is entracing and exudes a heartwarming soul, whilst her songwriting ability allows the listener to feel a true connection, even upon a first listen. Delivering nostalgia throughout, the single transports us to a no-pressure summer weekend in your late teens: a time when the possibilities of life feel endless. The single is an impressive debut and delivers an honest reputation of who the band are. We’re excited to see which direction Rubberband GIrl heads next.  

After the release of ‘South Suburban Weekend’, we spoke with Rubberband Girl about the dynamics of the band, the influences behind their sound, and the relief of finally delivering their debut single. You can read our conversation below. 

Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions today. How did your journey in music start?

It all started with writing poetry when I was a child, which developed into songs in my teens. I would upload covers to YouTube and Facebook for my friends and family to see, and eventually when I moved to London at age 17 I started working in real studios with producers and uploading my songs online. A dubstep song I made took off on soundcloud and went number 1 on hype machine, that was the beginning of my career.

You’ve developed a sound that draws on indie and jazz, who were some of the influences behind this? 

Too many to mention honestly! My favourite singers are Ella Fitzgerald and Madeleine Peyroux and I love songwriters like Joni Mitchell, Suzanne Vega and Tori Amos.

Your releases on soundcloud drew comparisons to Susanne Sundfør and Kate Bush, how did you react to that?

I’m honoured! The name Rubberband Girl actually comes from a Kate Bush song, she’s a major hero of mine

You’ve  just released your debut song ‘South Suburban Weekend’ as Rubberband Girl, what inspired the track? 

It’s a love letter to the town I grew up in and the ways my friends and I used to hang out as teenagers. I wanted to romanticise the ordinary and invoke a feeling of nostalgia in the listener.

Lyrically you take listeners along a trip down memory lane in what is a deeply introspective song. How important is it to you to be so personal within your output from the offset? 

With this project it’s very important to me, I started Rubberband Girl as a way to express my most authentic sound. I always find it fascinating how the more specific and personal you are with your art, the more people tend to relate.

Can you tell us a little about the dynamics within the band? 

It’s a changing line up with some fixed members such as producer Jonathon Quarmby and drummer David Dyson. There are so many wonderful musicians on the album including a six piece string section and a flugelhorn. I think of it like a collective, my ethos is that anyone can be in Rubberband Girl, but it wouldn’t be Rubberband Girl without me. Kind of like Tame Impala or Gorillaz.

After releasing your first single, how have you felt since? Was it a relief to finally get the sound out into the world? 

Yes it’s a huge relief and also kind of scary, like watching your baby go for their first day of nursery. You know they’re safe in your arms, but the whole point is to send them out into the world and let them grow.

What plans do you have for the rest of 2024? 

Our debut album is finished and on its way, as well as visuals content and live gigs. You can keep up with what’s next via socials at @rubberbandgirlband

Follow Rubberband Girl on Instagram

Words: Jake Wright