Weekly updates:


Pierre Bourne’s Directorial Debut

The producer/rapper extraordinaire is heading down for his first headlining Australian tour next month. In anticipation, he talks us through the film-like structure of his latest album, trying out different directions, and his undeterrable self-belief.

Posted by

As soon as a Pi’erre Bourne beat comes in, it’s instantly recognisable. The thumping 808s are bound to boom beautifully through any subwoofer. The woozy synths that swirl in the background are reminiscent of an old J-RPG soundtrack. The timeless producer tag borrowed from the Jamie Foxx show, acting as a call to arms for the incoming barrage of bounce. His signature sound has become a staple in the modern rap scene, serving as a backdrop for the likes of Playboi Carti and Drake, as well as an enhancer for his own raps throughout his fan-favourite The Life of Pi’erre projects. 

When pressing play on his new album Good Movie, however, you’ll instantly hear a switch up. Pi’erre’s sound splits off into different directions on this ambitious project, forming moments of mellifluous R&B and motion-inducing dance music. Atop these soundscapes is his ear-catching voice, powering through autotuned melodies while maintaining an undeniable swagger. This experimental muscle he’s harnessed that’s fueling his current exploration of this planet’s horizons, as he’s in the midst of a worldwide headlining tour. Thankfully, Pi’erre is coming out here next month, punctuating his globe-trotting pursuit in Australia and New Zealand. 

Last Monday, we hopped on the phone to Pi’erre directly after wrapping a headlining show in Manchester to chat about his upcoming trek down under as well as the movie-like structure of his latest album, trying out different directions and his undeterrable self-belief.

Hey Pi’erre. You’re heading back down to Australia next month. How are you feeling about the tour?
I’m very excited. It’s been 5 years since I was in Australia, so I’m excited to make it back. 

The last time you were here was for the 2017 Drake tour, right?
Yeah, it was for the Boy Meets World Tour. It was Boi-1da and I doing a culture clash. I’m not really a DJ, so it was kind of hard to approach that because I know how important a culture clash is to people; I didn’t want to make anyone upset. But it went pretty well, and Drake was cool with whatever I did. He told me to play what I wanted to play and to have fun. 

You’re touring in support of your latest album Good Movie, which to me, feels like a level up in your artistry. What do you attribute that to?
I feel like every time I put something out; I step into something bigger. With this one, I was really trying to show my range. Calling the album Good Movie gave me room to show what I wanted to show. With movies, you have directors like Spike Lee and Quentin Tarantino who shoot in completely different ways, but people love their work equally. I wanted to show different elements like that throughout the album, and I also wanted to structure it like a movie where it climaxes at the end. 

Are there any movies you used as a blueprint for this structure?
I actually feel like it goes all the way back to my literature class. Recording this, I often thought back to my teacher showing me how to format stories for essays and stuff. I figured out the structure by thinking back to old homework and stuff. 

Do you remember the moment when you realised you wanted to explore this type of structure with the album?
I wrapped up the recording process in September last year. It was around my birthday, and I always get a good creative feeling around my birthday. So around that time, I try to make as many songs and beats as possible. So this time, I was really just trying out different stuff. It was stuff that was different from the music in my TLOP series. I’ve been enjoying releasing music and touring, and I thought that cycle would be a great opportunity to showcase something like this. I felt like this approach was a good one for tours in the US and UK, as well as Australia and New Zealand coming up. This album kind of shows how grateful I am to both produce and perform music. 

I love how universal this album is, in the sense that there’s something on here that all different types of listeners enjoy.
For sure. I really wanted to differentiate every song on this album, even though it’s me producing and working on everything myself. I kind of wanted this album to be one where people may not enjoy every song, but they have that select few they really fuck with. Great songs can get buried in albums sometimes, so that’s why I also included a bunch of transitions, to make every moment stand out. 

Lyrically, you match these different styles with some of your most vulnerable songwriting yet. How did you obtain the confidence to be so open in your music?
I’ve been writing personal songs since I was a kid, so it’s nothing new to me. In middle school, I was trying to put myself out there writing songs about girls. I wanted my lyrics to match the different directions I was going, so it no longer feels like a random thing when I do something different. And when I put my feelings in a track, I don’t really feel the need to listen again, because I’ve already gotten that weight off. I write everything from the inside, so I’m really attached to every track. I didn’t think about this album as me being more vulnerable, but I think the direction highlights it. 

You’re someone who always finds their own lane, despite what the current trends in music are. How do you find a pocket where you can stand out, in an age where every musician has access to the same programs, plugins, and sounds?
I personally always stick to what I’m doing. Before there was any money coming from this, I knew that I had my own script to stick to, and I think that’s why I’ve been able to have the time to formulate my own sound. I’m also not against following trends, though, because that’s how music works. Like when Michael Jackson was out, I’m sure there were thousands of others trying to be like him. So I’m not against someone using another’s blueprint, because that’s how this industry works a lot of the time. For me, I’m just happy to be able to release music, tour the world, and do interviews like this.

Following trends can be a good thing if you maintain your identity in the process.
For sure. I think it’s dope that a beat or sound can be something that inspires others. But even then, I’ve never wanted to be that guy that does what other people are doing. In school, if everybody raised their hand for a snack, I was the guy keeping it down, even if I really wanted it. My mum always said I was a natural leader, so I want to keep naturally leading with my music. As long as I keep making music I enjoy, people will gravitate. 

I admire your sense of self-belief, and it makes me think back to your days as an engineer at Epic Records before anything started to pop off. During that time, did you ever think you’d be where you are today?
For sure, I knew it was only a matter of time, and I was seeing people around me blowing up back then. Epic Records felt like a big moment to me, but it was never a forever job. I treated that role as my way to get in the door, and I even let them know that. It was a blessing to have access to the studios there after everyone went home because that’s when I would be working on my own music; that was where TLOP 1, 2, and 3 were born. I’m grateful for being able to release those projects, and I’m grateful for everybody who started to check out my stuff after ‘Magnolia’ came out. The plan now is to continue growing and expanding. 

Lastly, my friend, what’s next after your world tour wraps up?
Hopefully, I’ll be able to jump right back in to record another album and prepare for another world tour. I don’t want it to be another 5 years until I’m back in Australia again.

Follow Pi’erre Bourne here for more and be sure to catch him at his upcoming Australian shows – details below.

Presented by Illusive Presents, Frontier Touring and Whatslively(AU) 


Tickets on sale now via frontiertouring.com/pierrebourne

Weekly updates