Anna Feller and Joelle Corey pool their creative talents to form the female pop duo Joyeur. College News catches up with the pair to discuss their explosive introduction to the LA music scene and their upcoming EP.
College News: What is the meaning behind the name Joyeur and how does it tie in with your music?
Joyeur: Joyeur is a hybrid word we coined that means “a person who gets off on watching others engaged in joyful activity”. It’s that moment where you see a stranger, friend or family member smile or experience something beautiful in life and you just catch yourself smiling like an idiot. We make music that is upbeat and dirty, so we want people to have fun while they’re listening to it.
CN: You first appeared on Soundcloud with a Kendrick Lamar cover, are you a fan of his?
J: Oh yes, definitely. He’s amazing but we actually chose Pride because we were so impressed by the female writer, Anna Wise, who frequently works on his albums and wrote on that track. Love her.
CN: Your debut single, Dig is out now—can you tell us a little about the track?
J: It’s about a gung-ho, all or nothing kind of love. That’s our motto for pretty much everything and it shows in the track. The stomps are like fists hitting the ground in tantrum. It’s our literal first print in the world, and it had the power that we wanted to come out swinging with.
CN: How would you describe your style? Some sources have classified it as electronic-inspired pop, would you say that’s accurate?
J: We are absolutely attracted to electronic-leaning sounds and styles, though we will be featuring more live instrumentation and funk-fueled elements in our upcoming EP.
CN: What advice would you give to other females aspiring to make it in the music business?
J: Just do it. Don’t look to other people to give you chances; make them yourself. Keep your head forward and be the artist and musician you are. Also, maybe value sleep a little less.
CN: What fellow artists inspire you?
J: Sohn, Santigold, LCD Soundsystem, N.E.R.D. We love a little grit.
CN: Anna and Joelle, how did you come to realise that you were compatible with one another?
J: We knew in our very first session together. We were introduced and basically started writing that day. The moment we met, we fed off each other’s urge to make something new and tried everything under the sun. Together, we poured out Tori Amos-style ballads. We created pure pop. We even made a renaissance fair track. And finally, we discovered ourselves as artists together—myself as a writer and singer, and Anna as a producer and musician. One thing we loved about one another was a shared sense of progression. We always kept pushing each other like there was no tomorrow.
CN: When did you both realise that music was your calling?
J: Anna began playing piano at six and became a classical concert pianist prior to learning engineering and production. I was singing and writing songs since birth, though I was actually a closeted singer until just a few years ago.
CN: What challenges have you faced during your career so far? What is the hardest thing about being a musician?
J: You finish one song that feels like your tour de force and then you just have to keep going. You can’t really rejoice over one accomplishment, you have to keep challenging yourself to be better and that pressure can be daunting sometimes.
CN: Your new single, Fast as You Can, is soon to be released. How does it differ to your previous tunes?
J: Dig was heavy. I think we started having so much fun writing together and that really shines in Fast as You Can. It was a different period in our lives and for us that’s just so obvious. Our music really reflects the various experiences we have and you can hear that each song is almost a time capsule of how we see each day.
CN: The bio of your Instagram page features the hashtag: #womeninmusic. Is this a particularly motivating concept for you?
J: Absolutely. The music industry is a boy’s club. We don’t seek out special treatment, but we all definitely need to look after and support both women and men alike. It’s a power dynamic that is as old as time, but you can really see that shifting right now.
CN: If you could meet any musician, alive or dead, who would it be and why?
Anna: Tori Amos. Her song writing and piano skills, along with her insane performances make her a powerhouse. She inspired me to be a musician. When I saw her perform, I said, “What is this storm to be reckoned with?”
Joelle: James Murphy. I actually met him once. I caught him head banging behind the DJ stand. We had a drink and he told me that he had heartburn. I wanted to respond, “Marry me!” He’s so cuddly and hilarious live, but mostly I love his music and outlook on being an artist.
CN: What are your plans for the future? Do you have any exciting projects on the horizon?
J: Yes! Our music video for Fast as You Can comes out August 28th and we have our debut EP due out this fall. Beyond that, we’ve already begun our full-length album.
Further reading: Panic! At the Disco—Pray for the Wicked Album Review