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Nov. 16, 2022

Interview with BEGINNERS

Interview with BEGINNERS

We had the pleasure of interviewing BEGINNERS over Zoom video!

Difficult times can make or break people. As a society, we've been going through doomsday fatigue, whether since the pandemic started, the Trump administration took office, or before...


We had the pleasure of interviewing BEGINNERS over Zoom video!

Difficult times can make or break people. As a society, we've been going through doomsday fatigue, whether since the pandemic started, the Trump administration took office, or before that even. Some people have been struggling more than others for a long time. On top of it all, the rent is too damn high, our rights are falling away, the world is on fire (literally and figuratively), and it feels like everything is entirely out of control. The tiniest thing could be that last straw that separates any of us from our sanity. For BEGINNERS, the alt-pop project of L.A.-based Samantha Barbera, one way to deal with those feelings of despair made itself abundantly clear: say f*ck it.

The extra indignant sting on top of everything inspired almost a superhero origin story, whether she's the hero or an agent of chaos to be seen. In addition to all that, Barbera went through a breakup during what felt like the implosion of the world we'd known while watching her rights as a queer woman shrink. Instead of imploding, she got into the studio.
And that's how BEGINNERS' If the World Is Ending EP was conceived: as an explosion. Barbera is always writing songs, and putting this record together came after a steady stream of collaborations in studios all over the West Coast. The lead single, "I Hate That I Love Brooklyn," is a raucous anthem full of spikey punk rock guitar that represents the spikey feeling of a toxic relationship—with a person, with the news, with a whole damn city or country.

The song started with a hat. No, literally. Producer/Artist and frequent collaborator Matias Mora (K. Flay, Broods, Birds of Prey: And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn,) had a blinged-out hat with the word Brooklyn on it and convinced everyone that it had to be where the song was set.

For Barbera, collaboration is the key to success. She co-produced and co-wrote all of the songs, but those intimate moments of sharing her personal stories with her collaborators helped tap into a sense of connection that brings her art to life. Over eight months, the World is Ending EP was written and recorded in various home studios.

BEGINNERS is a DIY project with punk roots spanning multiple scenes and genres. It has always been fully independent with no record label or advances, but with those all-important master rights and creative control. The project has seen massive success in the world of music syncs. Disney used the song "Start a Riot" in the trailer for the 2021animated feature Raya and the Last Dragon. It promoted outreach and interest from new fans worldwide who searched the song on the internet and commented en masse.

Apple also tapped BEGINNERS for three ad campaigns, and New Balance had the band perform in a commercial alongside a slew of famous women Olympic athletes. The music has also been played in ads from Target, Samsung, and Adobe, plus in numerous shows including The Walking Dead, The L Word, and the Netflix series Money Heist and Elite. In Netflix’s Sex/Life, the band got a name drop and a full, two-minute-long dance scene—an unheard-of placement.

We want to hear from you! Please email Tera@BringinitBackwards.com.
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