Until July this year, the group now known as Say Now didn’t even have a proper name to call their own. “needanamebro” was the title instead attached to teenagers Yssy, Amelia and Maddie as they developed an online hot streak that allowed them to secure nearly 250,000 followers and in excess of 11 million likes on TikTok.
The lack of name is testament to two things in this group. For one, it shows the sense of humour and powerful defiance that comes across through the group’s music. “Stress is now gone, life is easier
It’s our last song, now I’m leavin,” they sing on the catchy ‘S.I.N.G.L.E.’
More importantly, though, it showed the confidence in their own abilities – it seemed like a name wasn’t the most pressing priority when a need to, musically speaking at least, strike while the iron was hot, seemed a far bigger deal.
Now, with that name firmly under their belt, they’re on a path to chart stardom.
How did you meet and what’s the story so far?
Amelia: Me and Yssy met first, we were mutuals on Instagram. I had seen some of her reels, I thought she was a very good singer and then we met and we were just best friends and I was in Birmingham with her a lot, staying with her as much as I could. We knew we wanted a third person and we had always been looking but we were really picky and we couldn’t find anyone that we would actually want in the band. I was looking through a friends following who was a singer and because I thought she must have some singer friends and then I saw Maddie’s face and I was like wow, she’s the one and then I clicked it and there was a singing video, so I messaged her and was like hey, are you a singer? because she had dancing as well and I wasn’t sure. She replied within two minutes and we met a few days after.
Maddie: Amelia DM’d me saying hey, can you sing? I was so confused!
Amelia: Then Maddie said what genre? She sent me a video, and I was like sick and then we met three days after and from then onwards we spent every day together for weeks, getting to know each other and we were literally like best friends and now we’re here today, years later!
How would you describe your sound and who inspires you?
Maddie: It’s very pop and R&B-led, it’s like pop-fusion. There are so many different genres that we love and are inspired by. We love girl groups like Sugababes, because they’re so British sounding, Spice Girls because of their fun, girly lyrics.
Amelia: We listen to a lot of British rappers like Central Cee, Little Simz and Dave for lyrics and we try to do a lot of storytelling so, rappers are quite good to listen to inspire you when you’re going into a session
‘S.I.N.G.L.E’ is a brilliant slice of empowered pop. What experiences if any, inspired that record?
Yssy: At that time me and Amelia were both single. I recently went through a breakup, kinda like toxic ex you know, wanna get out of this relationship. We were just like, oh it’s stress free now. We found this meme that said ‘Stress Is Now Gone, Life’s Easier’ and it spelt out single, and we were like, wait, that is quite funny and then we went off that and then sparks flew everywhere and we just wrote the entire song in like two hours. It was really easy.
Amelia: And we started chanting ‘S.I.N.G.L.E’!
Maddie: Straight away as soon as we saw the meme, it’s now the hook of the song, so the meme was a big inspiration for that!
Amelia: The main thing we wanted it to be stress free. The kind of thing you’d want to sing when you’re stressed out about something coming and you want to be like, I’m chill.
What’s your songwriting process and how do you write together?
Maddie: A lot of the time we come into the studio with an idea or something [that] is happening to one of us at the time, and our songs are always really truthful. Especially because there are three of us and there are so many experiences between the three that we always have something interesting to write about and something is always going on with one of us. We just take what’s happening in the moment and put it into a song. Usually, we start with some melodies and then lyrics will just come and a lot of the times we start with the chorus.
Amelia: We really love the collaborative process and we really love working with top liners and writers that we’re friends with. It makes it even more fun to write when you’re bouncing off all of each other’s experiences and it’s quite nice to have an outside view.
Yssy: Yeah, I think it’s all very truthful and that’s kind of a nod towards our name also, because Say Now – you’re saying it now, you’re saying how you feel. It’s all about truth and communicating with people and their very specific experiences
What’s the future looking like? Anything in particular that you’re looking forward to?
Amelia: We’re really excited for everything to come, every day is like a new thing. But the main thing we’re excited for is live shows. Our favourite thing is performing live and meeting as many people in real life that listen to our music as possible. That’s the stuff we’re looking forward to.
Yssy: And obviously more music is coming, we’ve got an abundance of music. We’re so excited to release it and show you guys what we can do!