Lianne La Havas is one of the few soulful voices of our generation that maintains her classic style and regal elegance while remaining contemporary and in the loop. She was born and raised in London, England to an Afro-Jamaican mother and a Greek father.
The unique melting pot that is London played a very interesting role in shaping the way young Lianne would grow up to see race, identity and culture. The following is a brief snippet of an interview she did a while back with noisey.vice.com’s Kim Taylor Bennett.
“This subject really interests me. I knew that I was brown, let’s say, but I never felt like I belong necessarily to any racial group. At school, there would be a lot Muslim girls hanging out with other Muslims and a lot of African and Jamaican girls hanging out together. That was never my thing: to be part of a group that you’re the same as. A lot of it was music related too, like goths and grunge kids. I was with the group that wasn’t with any other group. It had an African girl, some very English girls, a Bangladeshi girl, and it didn’t really matter. We all knew where we came from, we knew our parents were from different places, we just thought that we were all hilarious and we hung out with whoever we thought was the funniest. Doing what I do now and seeing the plethora of creeds, colors, and religions I’m reaching with the music I’m making—it’s amazing. This is going to sound cheesy, but I think the beauty of music is that it doesn’t see color. The kind of music that I’m doing comes from many different worlds. I like to think that it doesn’t matter anymore.”
Her very refreshing take on what race should mean is not the only colourful thing about this young lady. As previously mentioned, her regal style that incorporates modern twists surely mimic the thoughts of a free-spirited city gal.
Lianne on her first style inspirations:
Really early on it was the Spice Girls. Scary Spice in particular. I liked the leopard print and it stuck with me. I can’t really think of anyone else when I was growing up that had that kind of natural hair.
Just having natural ringlets and that being really beautiful. I was attracted to her hair, the leopard print, and she had a lovely face and body shape. I just wanted to be like her.
Diane Keaton in Annie Hall is also one of my style icons. The way she comes across is still very feminine, but kind of a slouchy and casual tomboy. I really like that and mixing it with more of a Whitney Houston-in-the-90s look and Hilary Banks from Fresh Prince—they’re both style icons.
Stay tuned for an upcoming feature on Scary Spice herself! #multiracial #MixedRemixed