California native Claire Rosinkranz is best known for her lo-fi pop EP BeVerly Hills BoYfRiEnd, which includes Backyard Boy; her massive viral hit.
Her overnight success might not come as a surprise to all, as Rosinkranz has been writing songs since she was 8. Filling notebooks and iPads with lyrics, turns of phrase, and poems, the homeschooled artist would spend hours writing lyrics to songs that didn’t exist yet. Sometimes, she’d help her musician father, Ragnar, with melodies and lyrics for songs he’d been tasked to compose for TV shows and ad jingles.
Claire describes her style as alternative blues-pop, equally as inspired by early influences (like The Beatles’ Help!, Frank Ocean, and the Jack Johnson songs the family would listen to around the house) as it is by the singer-songwriter’s contemporaries, like Benee, Bruno Major, and Still Woozy.
Claire traffics in lo-fi songs with intricate yet totally relatable lyrics about friendship, crushes, family, and feelings. They plumb the depths of the human condition in very short bursts, exposing the songwriter’s remarkable emotional maturity and strong, singular grasp on her sound. Narratively, tracks like “Tough Guy” and “Seriouslaaay” follow Claire’s stories from start to finish while Ragnar’s clean, crisp production buoys his daughter’s crystal-clear vocals. “He totally captures my vision and if I don’t like something, I’m not afraid to say it,” Claire says of her dad. “Because we’re able to communicate so well, the process happens so quickly.”
The “star of the show,” Claire says of her catalogue, is “Backyard Boy,” the final song she wrote for the EP and one that grew legs of its own shortly after release, achieving massive viral success all on its own. “I was getting DMs from people telling me that ‘Backyard Boy’ was doing really well on TikTok,” she remembers. “Then, friends started texting me. Then more people were texting me. So I opened TikTok and I had 300,000 videos under the song and realized, “Oh, this is a thing!”
Signing to slowplay/Republic Records in 2020, Claire realized the work and dedication she’d been putting into music for half her life was coming to fruition. In August, she shot the “Backyard Boy” music video but kept things close to the family, as she’s done for years (it’s directed by her uncle, the first AD is her cousin, and close family friends star alongside her onscreen). “I think people are connecting to that song because it’s about a feeling you long for, especially during this time,” she says. “Everyone wants to have this experience but it’s something we can’t have right now because of COVID. But ‘Backyard Boy’ makes you feel like you can.”
Claire has spent a few years drilling down on her craft by refining her songwriting and learning to play instruments like the ukulele, the piano, and the jazz electric guitar (“that’s the one I absolutely enjoy the most,” she says), which have helped her turn her lyrics into fully imagined soundscapes. “I consider myself a writer first and foremost,” she’s quick to note. “I’m super fortunate to be able to sing all my songs, and I want to sing them, but writing is my favorite part of the entire process.”