Remember Willow Smith? The girl who whipped her hair back and forth over a decade ago. The Willow Smith who happens to be the daughter of Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith? Yes, that Willow Smith – well, the girl is looking metal as fuck in her latest music video, and it's actually a pretty catchy pop punk / hard rock song featuring Travis Barker.
As for how she transformed her sound, Willow says she had been a fan of rock ever since going on her first tour with her mom during Jada's Wicked Wisdom run on Ozzfest. She told Rolling Stone “That was my first real tour experience, and that was the first music that I was surrounded by as a child. When I first started doing my own music and my parents got me a vocal coach, we only did pop and R&B kind of vibes, and so for my entire life, I didn’t think I had the voice to sing this kind of music or sing rock in general.”
She told Kerrang “I realized that it’s not my voice that can’t sing this kind of music. I was afraid to sing this kind of music because I wasn’t sure what people would think.”
She cites Fall Out Boy, Paramore and My Chemical Romance among her influences. She also collaborated with Avril Lavigne on a new track.
As for her new song with Travis Barker, “I am so grateful for this tune because it was created in such an introspective time – during the first couple months of quarantine. It was the song that proved to me that I needed to let go of the insecurities I had about making a project of this genre.”
The video is full of rock tropes and some serious metal gear. Take a look. To me, this fits right in with artists like Lacuna Coil, In This Moment and New Years Day. Are you diggin it?
Here's some videos of her practicing on Strandberg guitars: