In short, Essentials is a segment that allows artists to put down their gear and divulge about a specific topic, giving their fans and the like the chance to connect with their various interests and inspirations. It’s just unlike any other listicle feature, we’re totally okay with things getting weird and/or uncensored. With the release of her new eight-track EP Big Boy (out on Cult Nation), we asked Montréal pop auteur CHARLOTTE CARDIN to discuss her five favourite songwriters of all time (see below).
Radiohead is by far my favorite band. They made me discover true songwriting. Songs like “All I Need”, “No Surprises”, and “House of Cards” pushed me to try writing lyrics myself when I was in high school. Their lyrics are unique and their musical atmosphere totally envelops you. I still get shivers listening to some of their songs I’ve heard a million times.
Daniel Bélanger is a songwriter from Québec that marked me during my childhood, adolescence and adult life. I remember car rides with my sister and parents where we would sing and sway to his beautiful poetry. He masters the French language to an extent I have rarely seen.
Weirdly, I’ve only recently discovered how amazing Bob Dylan’s writing is. I love how he phrases his sentences in such unique way. Two words are all you need to recognize his writing. What I appreciate the most about his music is that it is so easy to listen to; whether I’m sad or happy or even nostalgic, Dylan’s words evoke the truest feelings inside of me.
Channel Orange is one of the albums I have listened to the most in my entire life. It’s a very important record for me because Frank’s music has a way to make me disconnect in stressful times and simply enjoy true artistry. His songwriting is very inspiring.
Elliott Smith is the perfect example of how you don’t need a powerful voice to touch people straight to the heart. His half whispered, half sung tracks are very tastefully written. I listened to his 1997 album Either/Or on repeat when I lived in Paris, France for a few months, so his music makes me travel back to a melancholic yet very important part of my life.