ELLE meets Jillian Hervey

Five minutes with Lion Babe


What with Jillian Hervey’s impressive mane of in-your-face /in-her-face hair, Lion Babe is a fitting name. Perhaps that was where the inspiration came from - or perhaps not, considering the 24-year–old singer appears to approach her music with the same ferociousness: ‘I might be sitting there, I’ll start humming a melody and then I’ll just keep spewing out hooks.’

Hervey is one half of New York duo, alongside producer Lucas Goodman, whose soothing 70s soul-inspired sounds are utterly infectious.


To celebrate Ray-Ban’s legendary Outshine lens (that’s the mirrored one, where nobody can quite tell what you’re looking at), the duo have teamed up with the brand and graphic artist Kate Moross for the finale of their Ray-Ban Envision Tour. In the underground bunker of Dalston Roof Park, Moross created an installation inspired by the coloured specs in which eight videos of a larger than life Jillian are projected onto the walls.


ELLE caught up with the girl herself to find out more.

How would you describe your sound?

Lucas is a real beat head; he had a very punk upbringing and is influenced by 90s hip hop. I was exposed to old classic movies and musicals, but loved the likes of Lauren Hill, Erykah Badu and Destiny’s Child growing up. Our sound is futuristic soul.

You’ve got a strong look in your Treat Me Like Fire video. How would you describe your style?

Am I going to run around nude painted gold in real life? Probably not, but I do think about it. Everything I’m wearing in the beginning of the video is my own; I wear those boots every day and have gotten them resoled about four times. I got the shorts for $5 at a vintage shop.

Which fashion designers do you wear?

I love vintage Chanel and Prada. When I was growing up my mum had a Prada backpack, which she’s now given to me. I love it because it reminds me of when I was little. I think Balenciaga has some really interesting stuff too, but I’m a diehard vintage girl. Whoever the designer is, if it’s been worn, or it’s from a different time, it means more to me.

What do you think of London style in comparison to New York?

Londoners always seem to be fearless and more willing to have fun with their look. New Yorkers tend to play it safer – sticking with neutrals and black. In London people aren’t afraid to mix patterns and colours.

What is the one beauty product you can’t live without?

Red lipstick. You definitely need to have red lipstick no matter what. You can have a great outfit, but it will always give you that extra little pop. I also love perfume. It doesn’t even matter what the perfume is. I like to smell sweet.

The video for Lion Babe's first single, Treat Me Like Fire, is out now and an EP is planned for the end of summer.

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