It’s been over a year since the country bowed down to Thelma Plum for her excellent and game-changing debut album Better In Blak, and now she’s explained the story behind the album’s title track.
Speaking to triple J‘s Lucy Smith for INSPIRED, Plum said she had an entirely different album planned, but her experiences in recent years caused for a new one to be made.
“I wrote ‘Better In Blak’ in London…it just kind of happened,” she said.
“I was in the studio the night before, and I was already feeling sad and bad because some stuff had happened in Australia just before I left…I was working on a song called ‘Do You Ever Get So Sad You Can’t Breathe?’
“I looked at my phone and I started getting all of these notifications, and there was all this pretty crazy stuff. A lot of abuse, just horrible, horrible abuse. I’ve gotten my fair share of that stuff thrown my way, but this was on another level. The person who had sent those people my way had a lot a power, at that time, and I don’t think human beings are designed to take all that abuse at one time.”
She said that she ran outside of the studio, and her producer, Alexander Burnett, came and spoke to her, convincing her “not to let them win”.
Plum said, “Yous did that, but I did this.”
‘Better In Blak’ made history as the highest ranking song to date by an Indigenous artist in the Hottest 100, ranking at #9 in last year’s countdown.
“I’ve been through such a journey with that song, it makes me feel really proud,” she said.
“I was very scared putting it out there, it’s very personal.”
Listen to the full interview here.