As a music fan, when I follow up on a person that I’ve previously been pleased with I want to be faithfully fulfilled. I want to be delighted with what they’ve done during the time we haven’t talked. I want them to be even better than before, dichotomously doing what I found so focal in the first place while fusing it with something fresh. Having said things like Elizabeth Chamberlain “dazzles with her diversity, which ranges from rock to blues,” has a voice that “is both vulnerable and vindicated and makes a powerful point,” has “the pep of Katy Perry…the soul of Joss Stone,” and that she “has a dangerous dynamic, she’s both Disneyland and a dive bar, dawn and dusk, sunrise and sunset, she has the look of America’s sweetheart with a voice of eyeliner and cigarettes,” Elizabeth didn’t have an easy road to round two.
Taking her talent to new places and new faces, Elizabeth moved from Phoenix to L.A. and in hopes of finding a full band to suit her sound, founded The Scarlet Ohs. Chamberlain is beginning anew with band members Swan Ryu on guitar, Jason Michael Adams on bass, and Ryan Magdaleno on drums. Their sound contains everything that is captivating about Chamberlain, and packs a personality punch. It’s modern, yet memorable, energetically effective, alluringly addictive, capably kinetic.
Catching up with Chamberlain was a proud moment for me. She’s come a considerable way since I first saw her in that coffee shop. The lyrics to The Scarlet Ohs song “Boom Boom Baby” light up: “Boom, boom baby goes the dynamite / Sparks are flying cause tonight is the night / It’s true / I’m igniting the fuse on you.” I predict it’s only a short scenario until The Scarlet Ohs not only catch fire, but blow up.
Sara Fincham: The last time we talked we discussed overcoming obstacles. What new ones have you faced? For instance – the decision to move to L.A. – what were the pros and cons, the sacrifices vs. the successes?
Elizabeth Chamberlain: Moving to Los Angeles has not been an easy feat being 18 and living on my own. Los Angeles is obviously a crazy, busy and competitive town so therefore it can drive me to be the same. While the move has given me insight and has opened doors to much more opportunity in the industry, there have also been many obstacles of pressure and being able to keep up with this fast-paced town. Having that said, it has been very invigorating and I love the challenge.
SF: Was forming a band always a goal, or was it more of an accommodating approach to your talent that opened new, more diverse doors?
EC: I have always wanted to be apart of a band. I didn’t necessarily plan to have a band but it came up and seemed like such a marketable and fun idea to have other musicians collaborate with me and give me that much more inspiration. I’m so glad I did, because the musicians I have found so far are so brilliant and creative.
SF: Last time you said “I have had to overcome insecurities and really find not only who I was as a person, but as an artist also and really become confident with myself.” Do you still have insecurities, personally and artistically? I think you have admirably accumulated a notable niche for yourself!
EC: I have overcame so many obstacles throughout the years, but then again which struggling artist hasn’t? I have definitely grown and matured a lot as an artist and have worked hard to find my sound and connect myself with intelligent people in the industry. As for insecurities, I will always have those but I think they partially help me as an artist and show vulnerability which many people can relate to. Thank you, I am proud of my new sound of my band The Scarlet Oh’s.
SF: Do the best songs still come at 2 A.M.?
EC: Yes, unfortunately my creativity really kicks in late at night and I can’t sleep because my mind is constantly thinking of new song ideas and melodies. Not always, but very often. Sometimes I collaborate with other genius musicians such as my producer, Dean Dichoso in which we write during the day.
SF: How hard was it to find the right band fit for your vision? Were there a few false starts before the band became complete and cohesive?
EC: The most difficult part has been finding the right musicians for the band. Elements such as age, image, style and their abilities as a musician come into factor and it is so hard to find the musician that has every element you are looking for. It is even more difficult to manage them and coordinate schedules once you find them all. It [was] completely worth it though, once I completed the full band and [saw] the final completion rehearsing to perfection.
SF: What does being in a band artistically allow you to do differently than singing solo? Do you write the songs or is it a collaborative combination of lyrics?
EC: With The Scarlet Oh’s, I am still initially the writer and come up with all the melodies, lyrics and some of the music to spark new ideas for songs, but having other talented musicians, I can generate new ideas based upon hearing them play something musically and then come up with a melody based upon hearing something they create. Whether my drummer comes up with a beat first or my guitarist comes up with a riff, I can sometimes hear melodies I would never been able to come up with myself alone.
SF: Is there a story behind the band name?
EC: The story behind the name is pretty random. My mother and I were at the barn where we own horses and saw a horse named Scarlet O Hara and we came up with the name The Scarlet Oh’s, which stuck because it was catchy, and fun and fit the music quite well. I also happen to love Victorian and vintage themes and the name definitely captures those aspects.