Indie Mixtape 20: Vagabon Prioritizes Honesty In Her Indie Pop LP ‘Sorry I Haven’t Called’

“Can I be honest?” Vagabon, moniker of musician Laetitia Tamko, asks in her song “Can I Talk My Shit?” It’s a question that sets the tone for her entire third LP. “This whole record is how I talk to my friends and how to talk to my lovers,” she said in a statement. “I think honesty and conversational songwriting can become poetry. There’s beauty in plainly speaking without metaphors and without flowery imagery.”

Produced by Rostam, Sorry I Haven’t Called, which is out everywhere this Friday, leans into Vagabon’s poptimist side. The Cameroonian-American musician first introduced her delicate ballads in 2017 on the debut Infinite Worlds, then re-introduced herself with the shimmering self-titled 2019 LP. Now with Sorry I Haven’t Called, Vagabon is making her bid for indie pop royality.

Ahead of the release of Sorry I Haven’t Called, Vagabon sits down with Uproxx to talk reading minds, unrequited love, and Pharrell in our latest Q&A.

What are four words you would use to describe your music?

Good, fun, deep, complex.

It’s 2050 and the world hasn’t ended and people are still listening to your music. How would you like it to be remembered?

I’d like for it to remind people of a special time in their life.

Who’s the person who has most inspired your work, and why?

Pharrell, I admire him as a producer.

Where did you eat the best meal of your life and what was it?

Best of my life, it’s hard to say but I’ve just had an amazing meal at Brawn in London.

Tell us about the best concert you’ve ever attended.

I wish I went to concerts much, I usually just end up seeing artists play from side stage at festivals. I did watch JPEGMAFIA from side stage at Pitchfork Fest 2023 and that was fun.

What’s the last thing you Googled?

“Thyme Mezzaluna.”

Where’s the weirdest place you’ve ever crashed while on tour?

In a sleeping bag on the beer-soaked floor we had just played, at a house show.

What’s your favorite city in the world to perform and what’s the city you hope to perform in for the first time?

In the states, I love NYC because it’s where I’m from. Internationally, Paris. The Paris audience has always been incredible to me.

What’s one piece of advice you’d go back in time to give to your 18-year-old self?

Don’t spend so much time being self-conscious.

What’s one of your hidden talents?

Reading minds.

If you had a million dollars to donate to charity, what cause would you support?

Houselessness.

What are your thoughts about AI and the future of music?

I don’t have as much information as I’d like to give my thoughts but overall I hope music made by people has supremacy.

You are throwing a music festival. Give us the dream lineup of 5 artists that will perform with you and the location it would be held.

Mitski, Frank Ocean, Japanese House, and Nosaj Thing on a pony farm in the south of Iceland

Who’s your favorite person to follow on social media?

My little sister.

What’s the story behind your first or favorite tattoo?

My friend gave me a tiny blue rose signifying unrequited love in a Bushwick apartment at like 11pm at night.

What is your pre-show ritual?

Warm up vocals, be alone.

Who was your first celebrity crush?

Hm… I don’t remember ha!

You have a month off and the resources to take a dream vacation. Where are you going and who is coming with you?

Japan with my little sister.

What is your biggest fear?

Drowning.

Sorry I Haven’t Called is out 9/15 via Nonesuch Records. Find more information here.

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