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Katie White of Ting Tings
UK Duo Gets it Started
by Matt Crawford on Apr 10, 2009
The Ting Tings 2008 trojan-horse debut We Started Nothing, has undeniably started something. The UK duo earned Appleís approval with a coveted feature spot on a recent iPod commercial, and the band now finds itself looking to upgrade to larger-capacity venues as many of its shows worldwide sell out in advance. The Ting Tings perform at The Fillmore on April 15th before heading south for Coachella. Katie White (vocals/guitar) spoke with SF Station during a phone interview from the road.
SF Station (SFS): You just launched a Twitter page. Are you enjoying it while you are on the road?
Katie White (KW): Iím not sure yet. Itís weird because people really want to know what I just ate. The good thing is, if we see something interesting at least we can tell people. I canít get my phone to work with it, but I like reading other peoplesí tweets. Iím quite a private person, so Iíll give just enough information without being too graphic.
SFS: I noticed one of the few people you are following is Britney Spears. Have you learned anything new from her?
KW: When you open an account they have people you can sign up to follow. I put Britney Spears because it was the only one I recognized. Iím also following Stephen Fry, Jonathan Roth and this comedian Allen Carr, from the UK, who is really fuckin funny.
SFS: Before the Ting Tings, you and Jules were in Dear Eskimo together. Did that experience help you prepare for the Ting Tings?
KW: We learned a lot from that band and the main thing was donít take advice from other people. We tried that and it didnít work. Nobody has a clue what they are doing anyway. You just have to go by instinct.
What we are doing now with the Ting Tings is influenced by other people, but we never take advice from anyone because you always end up blaming them if it goes wrong.
SFS: When you wrote the songs for We Started Nothing, you didnít think anyone would hear them except for your friends. Obviously, more people will hear the next album. How do you plan to get back to that mindset?
KW: One of the main reasons our album was special is because it really wasnít written for anyone else, like you said. It was written when we had nothing to lose, so we didnít over think things because we didnít really give a shit. We are trying to stay in that mindset. We might be selling over a million records now, but fuck it, it could all be gone tomorrow. But it is quite hard to stay in that mentality because we do kind of have something to lose now.
SFS: Have you started planning the next album?
KW: Yeah, we are starting with song titles. We decided not to write on the road because we donít want to sound like Bob Dylan. If youíre driving through the American desert with an acoustic guitar you end up sounding nothing like yourself.
We decided we are going to go live in Berlin and record the album because we really like it there. There are lots of artists and interesting bands and things to inspire you. We are excited because we havenít written any new music in eight or nine months.
SFS: Do you still make your own clothes?
KW: Yeah, when I get the time. I havenít had time because I canít take a sewing machine on tour. I made some gloves recently and Iím even thinking about selling them on our merch site.
Iím really getting into gloves. Itís kind of a weird story. You end up meeting so many people and touching them -- maybe 200 people in one go -- and I started thinking about all the germs. Iím really not fussy about germs, but I just thought gloves would be a good to stop me from catching some weird thing and wondering how in the hell I caught it.
The Ting Tings perform at the Fillmore on April 15th. The show is sold out.
by Matt Crawford on Apr 10, 2009