What Did You Expect? is out now
Gold Coast singer, lyricist and rapper, Lemaire has just dropped his debut EP, What Did You Expect?. To celebrate the release, the musician is walking us through the EP, track-by-track, whilst also giving each song on the EP parents in the form of some of his favourite tracks throughout history.
"Most of these songs were born in my bedroom studio and although I have had help on the final nitty-gritty production and mixing, I believe the humility of these songs still shines through. I have tried to be the most authentic version of myself on these tracks, and I don't see that changing whatever comes after this." Lemaire shares.
WHAT?! (FEAT. L33ZE)
(Get Up I Feel Like Being A Sex Machine By James Brown X IV. Sweatpants By Childish Gambino)
This song is my favourite on the EP to play live, hands down. It’s my go to song if I feel the energy of the crowd isn’t quite where it needs to be, and I almost always end up running around in the crowd mid-song. That’s kinda why I picked it as the first track of ‘WDYE’, just to make sure the energy is right from the get go.
The beat of ‘What?!’ was (quite obviously) heavily inspired by James Brown and I remember listening to one of his albums one day and noticing a strong accent on the ‘1’ beat of most of his songs. I wanted to do something similar for myself so I made the beat that afternoon and was so happy with it I pretty much texted the instrumental to everyone I knew. It just had this super positive and energetic vibe to it that I had to write a verse, just for fun. A couple of weeks later I was listening to mixes in my car when the demo version of ‘What?!’ came on and I just knew I had to make it into a song.
It felt like it needed a feature verse on it, just to give a bit of variety, and I knew L33ze would sound insane on this kind of beat, so I shot it his way.
FORD LASER -
(Don’t Start Now By Dua Lipa X King Kunta By Kendrick Lamar)
‘Ford Laser’ was written about my piece of shit car. I had just moved back from London where I had spent the last 9 months attempting to save up enough money to fly home, and was pretty poor. My partner and I had managed to scrape together enough money to buy the car ($1500) and I remember feeling this intense sense of freedom when driving it home. It was (and still is) a complete piece of shit - the stereo is a tape deck, where the volume is permanently on 100 and cannot be turned down, the left indicator is hanging by a wire down the side of the car etc. I sat down and wrote this song, pondering whether or not I would be any happier if I had bought a fancier, newer car with all the bells and whistles. I just feel as though the happiness associated with materialistic purchases is a fleeting one, and 2 years on would I be any different?
BE MYSELF (FEAT. BOY SODA)
(Mo Money, Mo Problems By Notorious B.I.G X Streets By Doja Cat)
This must have been the first track I wrote for the EP, long before I had any intention of making an actual project. This song is essentially about staying true to yourself, being confident in who you are, and staying focused on your own path. Nobody is perfect and I feel like everybody has things about themselves that they wish they could change, and sometimes it takes quite a bit of effort (and time) to accept those things. I wrote this song to convince myself of the beauty of individualism, and to remind myself that I AM good enough.
I had written two verses and was pretty satisfied with what I had said on the topic, but still had a huge halftime section left empty. I really wanted to give the song an interesting quirk, something that could personify the meaning of the song sonically. I had been following BOY SODA for quite some time and truly believed in him and his music, so I sent the track his way to see what he thought, and to see if he might be interested in laying down a verse.
(Protection By Allday X Girls By The 1975)
This one’s a funky, groovy, hip hop track where I experimented more on melodies and the flow of my verses. This is the only song on the EP that I didn't make the beat for, and easily one of my favourites on the record. I received a message request on instagram from a Brisbane music producer named REENS4K with an attachment and a short message. He told me he had been listening to my songs for a while and decided to have a go at making an instrumental just for me. I have never had this happen to me and was super excited to check it out. I played it in my car over and over on the way home from a songwriting session one day and instantly found the chorus melody and began writing lyrics in my head. When I got home I burst through the door to sit down and write it all out. It was probably one of the quickest songs I've ever written.
(JEWELZ By Anderson .Paak X Stomp By The Brothers Johnson)
I was listening to quite a lot of funk, disco and 80’s rock when I made this one and had developed a really deep appreciation for how basslines really drive the energy and groove of songs made in that era. I taught myself how to slap bass (poorly), and before long the bassline of ‘Cola’ was born. I added some funky guitar chords, some chunky drums and a big, stupid, obnoxious 808 sub bass under the whole thing - you know, just to convince everyone I’m a rapper. The song was feeling really summery and confident, so I started writing some bars that matched that mood. This one is super fun to play live, and I feel like it closes out the album on a really positive note.
What Did You Expect? is out now!