2 posts tagged "Kemp Muhl"
Charlotte Kemp Muhl has something of a charmed life. The pouty-lipped model’s Maybelline contract and her duties to The Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger, the band she fronts with boyfriend Sean Lennon, mean a constant string of international gigs and high-profile photo shoots. But she’s finding inspiration in her more humble beginnings for her latest musical interlude. While growing up in Georgia, she wrote a handful of songs for her longtime best friend and classically trained choral singer Eden Rice, which the duo has unearthed to form Kemp & Eden. Their debut album, Black Hole Lace, has them falling somewhere between Kate Bush and Simon and Garfunkel and utilizing philosophical lyrics (“Athena sprang from Zeus’ head / Lobotomy or cesarean?”) and ethereal harmonies all culled from the tracks they penned in their early teens. “We’ve been writing new songs recently, but funny enough, they haven’t changed that much,” says Muhl. “Frankly, I was a lot more mature when I was 14 than I am now—I’m totally in my fart jokes phase.” Here, the duo talks to Style.com about homespun face masks, hoarding Gunne Sax dresses, and why sometimes music trumps modeling.
You’ve known each other since you were children—why come together now on a music project?
Charlotte Kemp Muhl: We had given up on our childhood ambitions of writing music and being in a band—it seemed like a pipe dream—until I met Sean. He heard us playing live on a guitar at The Dakota, at his mom’s house, and said, “I really want to produce it!” So we put out this acoustic EP.
Is the writing process a collaborative one?
CKM: I actually write all the songs technically, but Eden has major veto power, and I write what I think she would like because she’s the lead vocalist. She’s a much better singer than I am—she was in a choir her whole childhood. I’m more of the songwriter, and I sing harmonies. With The Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger, it’s a guy and a girl, 50-50, and it’s definitely more of a struggle and more of a fight [writing songs]. It’s interesting because that represents exactly a world between a male and a female brain, and I do a lot of androgynous, experimental stuff with that. With Eden, it’s really feminine; it’s very soft and romantic, and more about the ethereal.
Having busy lives, how do you find the time to work on Kemp & Eden?
Eden Rice: We live with each other!
CKM: We live in Sean’s house so we see each other almost every day. [But] it’s hard, we really have trouble finding time to work on any of our projects. Luckily, we’re able to work pretty fast once we decide to; we did that whole EP in a week. We’re ready to finish our next record, which is pretty much already recorded. We also got our own guitarist—we used to rely on Sean a little too much, he was our guitarist and producer and relying on his schedule was really difficult. We’ve been doing stuff ourselves, which has liberated us.
Over the past month of front-row and after-party appearances, we’ve come to consider Kemp Muhl and Sean Lennon as a single entity—Seamp, if you will. It’s rare to see either alone; the couple is more likely engaged in some form of arm linking or leg crossing that keeps their bodies perpetually intertwined. But at Gaia Repossi and Eugenie Niarchos’ jewelry launch last night in Paris, Muhl stood out on her own despite requisite physical contact with Lennon. The singular spotlight came courtesy of a green lip that harked back to Vivienne Westwood’s Spring 2009 presentation—and added a new color to the season’s increasingly vibrant statement-lip color wheel. And you know what? We’re kind of into it even though it’s an odd shade we might normally advise against. The PDA, less so. You?