What does it say when Architecture in Helsinki asks you to tour with them? You’ve got indie cred. When Jay-Z and Kanye West come knocking? Street cred. When Coldplay and Björk want you on the bill? Global cred.
Suffice it to say that Santigold is up to her ears in credibility. The artist (real name: Santi White) blazed onto the scene like a technicolor dance party in 2008 as Santogold, later modifying her moniker. Mixing new wave with dance punk and dub, Santigold’s genre-bending music captured the imagination of audiophiles everywhere, and landed her in a triumvirate of rock ingénues alongside Karen O and M.I.A. Before supreme hipsterdom came knocking, Santigold was making a name for herself as a songwriter and producer, with credits on work by Spank Rock, GZA, Ashlee Simpson and Lily Allen. After enlisting the help of friends such as Freq Nasty, Diplo, Radioclit, M.I.A. and Chuck Treece from Bad Brains, Santigold released her self-titled debut on Downtown/Lizard King and became the new “It” chick, winning praise from Rolling Stone and Spin.
We caught up with Santigold to see how her U.S. tour was going. Here’s what she said.
Best show so far?
Sacramento. It was the second show of the tour, the first time we ironed out all the kinks and the show went smoothly, and therefore the first moment I felt relaxed about the new show. The sound was good, the crowd was great and I liked my outfit.
One thing you have to have on the road?
My own pillow, and a nice pair of slippers. Comfort is really important to me when I’m on the road because touring in general is so uncomfortable. It’s really rough, and I’m always having to worry about my voice, and taking care of myself. My pillow ensures that I can get a good sleep even on the crappiest bed, and my slippers make me feel cozy. It’s like bringing home with me.
If you’re playing DJ on the bus, what do you put on?
I have a bunch of mixed up playlists that I always play. They are how I wish the radio would be, just great songs of all different kinds, back to back.
Moment you look forward to the most at each show?
My favorite moment is the last song of the show, during the encore. The crowd is the most hype and I bring out Amanda Blank and Spank Rock if he’s there with us, and we have fun like it’s our own little after-party up on stage. It’s more playful than the rest of the show.
Current favorite song to play live?
I like playing the new song I did with Major Lazer called “Hold The Line.”
Favorite way to kill time on the road?
Any show you’re especially looking forward to?
New York. I can’t wait!!
For more information on Santigold, click here. If you like what you hear, check out these likeminded OurStage artists: