Gear Talks: Tessa Fleur

Subscribe to Mixdown Magazine


Gear Talks: Tessa Fleur

Tessa Fleur
Words by Lewis Noke Edwards

Tessa Fleur has been consistently releasing singles since 2020's "Sunset Melancholy", and most recently with "Avalon".

There’s an ethereal nature to her music, it’s introspective and intimate. Her vocal is articulate, making room for the the lyrics to be honest and open, Tessa herself saying the song is about “the bittersweet realisation that everything we cherish will eventually fade away,” – a reality we all have to face sometimes.

Hey Tessa, congrats on the release of “Avalon”. How did this song come about? 

Thank you so much! At the time, my boyfriend had just broken up with me, and I moved back into my parent’s home. My world felt so upside-down, and I turned to my guitar as a way to cope. However, most of the songs I wrote were terrible. I kept singing the word “Avalon” to a set of chords that had been in my head for a while. I had no idea what the word meant but I liked it. I jammed it out with my brother, who plays drums, and I really liked how this chorus hook felt.

I looked up the meaning of “Avalon”, which came from the name of a dead island where heroes go. I liked the word ‘dead’ – I connected it to the idea that everything we love will die and I knew I wanted the song to relate to my breakup. I went to the farm (where I go to record my music with my co-producer Ali [Richardson]).

Read up on all the latest interviews, features and columns here.

We both knew from the start that this journey was more than just making a song. I had a bag of mushrooms, we ate them, and got to work. We crafted the song over two days, and it was a very beautiful and cathartic experience.

Did you have a finished demo of it? If so, how did you do that?

Typically, I have all the lyrics and composition written before recording with Ali. However, in this case, I only had a chorus, so we co-wrote everything else together. Once we established the structure, we built the song from the drums up.

How did Ali get involved? 

I met Ali through his partner Clea, who’s music I fell in love with. I messaged her out of blue on Instagram asking who her producer was and she gave me Ali’s details. I was very new to the world of releasing and being an independent artist when I met Ali. Working with him has expanded my musical horizon both sonically and artistically.

How do you think having a producer ultimately affected the outcome?

I co-produce with Ali, so we both have an equal input into the creative outcome during the recording and mixing process. I’ve learned a lot from Ali and his experience with production. I believe that co-producing with someone else, especially when they have all the right equipment and can handle the engineering aspects, has been particularly beneficial for my music. 

Has “Avalon” deviated from your initial vision for it? If so, how? 

No, it hasn’t. Usually, I change my vision for my music, but with this song, it came from such a painful and vulnerable place that I felt very connected to it.

Tessa Fleur 2

Do you feel the music juxtaposes or matches the lyrical content?

No – I feel the the sombre etherealness of the music really fits with the heartbreak themes in the lyrics 

Thanks for your time! As a closer have you got any stories about the making of “Avalon” you can share? 

During the recording of “Avalon,” there was a particular harmony that my vocal couldn’t quite hit. Ali called out to Clea, whose voice has these incredibly beautiful low tones that blended perfectly with the song. Both Ali and Clea jumped in and sang the most beautiful harmony in the outro. It felt like I was squished between the best sandwich. It was a full circle moment having Clea involved – like I said, I met Ali through being a fan of Clea so it was very special.

Keep up with Tessa here.