WWD caught up with The Ting Tings’ Katie White and Jules De Martino at All Points West, just hours before their high-energy Saturday night set. Since the pair has been touring and doing promotion in support of their first album, “We Started Nothing,” as far back as spring 2008, it’s no wonder they can finish each other’s sentences.
This story first appeared in the August 4, 2009 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
WWD: Have you been playing a lot of festivals this summer?
Katie White: A lot. Probably around 20 or 25. We’ve done Romania, Slovakia, Japan, all these random places that we would never have dreamed of going to.
Jules De Martino: We’ve been doing four days on festivals, and one day off for the whole summer, so we’ve covered the whole globe.
WWD: What are the benefits of playing festivals, as opposed to clubs or other venues?
J.D.M.: I think for us it’s, selfishly, [that] we get to see other bands. When you do your own gig in a club, you don’t get to see a lot of bands.
K.W.: And people go to festivals to see lots of different music, so you get to play in front of a different type of audience than your own audience. You’re attracting people who have just seen a rock band or a punk band or a funk band. Then they’re seeing you and they’re going to make something of it.
J.D.M.: Whereas sometimes in a club, when it’s just our own music, it’s almost easier [for us] because they know what they’re getting. Whereas here, they don’t know what they’re getting and you feel that excitement.
K.W.: You’ve got a lot to prove. It’s good, you feel like you’re winning new people that didn’t even know about you, which is a nice feeling.
WWD: Have you guys had any time off or vacation in the past year?
J.D.M.: In the last 18 months, we’ve had probably about three weeks. We don’t know what our families look like any more.
K.W.: We’ve just been in Berlin for five days. It’s just amazing. We’re recording our second album there, so we’ve been building our studio. It could have been a vacation, but we chose not to. I made a cut, too, in the studio.
J.D.M.: We found an old jazz club, so we rented that and brought all of our equipment there. We can’t wait to record.
WWD: Are you working with any new producers or artists for the album?
J.D.M.: There are lots of ideas in the pipeline, but we work alone. We lock ourselves away. We work really quick to get our album done and we party.
K.W.: We get offers to work with big producers, but I just think we’d end up sounding like every other band out there. I kind of like what we do — pop songs, but they’re really scruffy and homemade, which is good.
WWD: What do you wear to perform at summer festivals?
K.W.: I always like to wear leggings on stage. Not to be crude, but they’ve got photographers in the pit, and they’re below you. And I don’t stand there looking pretty on stage, I’m jumping around. So, for modesty I’m always in leggings. Flat shoes — I can’t perform in heels. [As for clothes] as little as possible without looking like a slut, just ‘cause it’s so hot.
J.D.M.: I can’t look like a slut. I mean, I try. I’m drumming, so I’ll wear a particular jean that’s flexible so I can drum, and trainers — probably Adidas trainers for me because they work. And just T-shirts. I go through two T-shirts for a gig ‘cause I sweat a lot. It’s got to be simple.
K.W.: I suffer for my art because, recently, I’ve been wearing this lady called Pam Hogg. She’s like a Vivienne Westwood character. She hasn’t done a show in 10 years, and then she just started making clothes again. Remember [the TV show] “Power Rangers”? She makes, like, Power Ranger suits — they’re brilliant. You’re so hot on stage but they look like so much fun, that I’m just like, “F–k it. I’ll just look like a big sweat monster, but I’m dressed like a Power Ranger.”