“I met Fall Out Boy, who I’m doing a collaboration with on their next album,” she revealed to Idolator. “It will be fun. They were lovely boys. So that will be nice.” That’ll put her in the company of Elton John, Courtney Love and who knows who else on FOB’s forthcoming Save Rock and Roll. And while Foxes was successful in turning her first trip to SXSW into a new recording opportunity, her three-show-a-day schedule kept her from catching too many other sets and caused her to strain her voice. But the London singer still squeezed in some time to chat with us about her time in Austin, why she likes writing songs for other artists and her weirdest experiences onstage.
Since this is your first SXSW, did you have any preconceived notions of what it would be like?
I had no idea what to expect really. I had been told it was crazy, but I didn’t really know fully. It’s funny because my friend Lizzy, who’s in MS MR — we bumped into each other [at the Neon Gold Showcase] and hugged each other. I said, “I’ve lost my voice.” And she said, “Me too!”
I think every singer on the Saturday of SXSW is feeling the same situation. It’s like, “Yes, I’ve lost my voice. I’ve got three shows tomorrow.” Everyone’s just like “I gotta get on with it. I gotta plow through it.”
How do you do get through your performances if you’re not feeling 100%?
I’m going with it. I could cancel, but I think that’s a bit shitty. There’s nothing you can do about it. When you do four shows a day, your voice is going to go. So I think everyone’s in the same position. You just have a good time and put on a show the best you can.
What was your show schedule like?
We’ve been doing three shows a day and promo. It’s been crazy and one of those frantic things you can’t believe. But it feels like Disneyland because I want to see everything but I can’t. I’ve been sent home every night by my manager, and I’ve still lost my voice. I haven’t gone out. I haven’t done anything.
So have you had the moment enjoy Austin?
No, not once. I haven’t even been able to go into the swimming pool, which is outside the door at my hotel. I haven’t once looked at it, and it’s just been looking at me because I’ve been so busy. But it’s been amazing. I don’t want to leave.
What’s the worst part?
I wanted to see Icona Pop and Charli XCX. I love those girls, but we haven’t had the chance to see each other. So there’s loads of people I know here, but I just can’t see them.
What’s the best part about being in this city?
It’s probably the [MTVU] Woodies. I performed there with Zedd. That was the first people have heard “Clarity” where I have performed since it’s been out already. I kind of came out from darkness, and he was doing his DJ set. And I thought I was going to get booed off. I was convinced because Zedd was doing his thing, and everyone was going crazy. It was so amazing. There was such a great reaction. It felt like a runaway, and I was walking down and singing. Everyone was just shouting at me. It was just really, really amazing.
So when does your album come out?
Probably towards the end of the year – quite end of the year. I still have to put a single out and then another single out and then the album.
What happens after SXSW?
After SXSW, I go home and get to sleep for a week. I don’t get to sleep for a week at all. I go back and actually go into write with some people for some other stuff. It should be quite fun. It’s not for me because I’m quite finished with that. It would just be nice to go out and write for other people, which will be good fun. So I’m doing some of that, and then getting ready to release the single.
I’m kind of mixing it all together as one because I’m not really known yet. So I’m kind of just dabbling with both. I enjoy doing both.
Do you approach your songwriting differently when it’s for someone else?
It definitely feels a bit freer, which is good. You can be more personal, but you can feel a bit more open about it. There’s a bit of a distance, which I quite enjoy. Collaborating is good as well. There are some collaborations that are coming out soon as well, which are quite mental. It’s really fun.
So how have you seen your career progress from when you first started?
I think it’s all about people starting to listen. I think that’s the craziest part. I think getting emails from people, and that they’re inspired and that you’re giving them hope. I used to send those emails to people when I was at the beginning of my career. So it’s really strange to get that, and it’s really powerful. I think that’s how you kind of see how you’re progressing – from the feedback you. And it’s really, really special getting those emails. It is what it’s about for me and all that really matters.
Will we see you back in the US soon?
I come back in April for a few days with Zedd. And after that, we’ll see what happens.