Becoming a professional singer was not Hemlocke Springs’ plan. Born Isimeme Udu in Concord, North Carolina, the budding star had more academic plans for her future: After getting a biology degree from Spelman and thinking about a career in the medical field, her interest in bioinformatics led her to the Master of Science degree from Dartmouth.
“In my first couple months here, I was starting to think med school is not for me,” she says with a laugh. She’s speaking to Rolling Stone from her current apartment near Dartmouth’s campus before she moves back home to North Carolina. “My thing was like ‘I’m gonna do medical research, maybe get some papers in, and then I can do my PhD somewhere.”
But music lingered in the background of Udu’s life. She did choir in middle school and was introduced to GarageBand by a friend in high school. She toyed around with the program, eventually investing in Logic while in college.
“It was kind of a stress mechanism,” she explains. “Whenever I just wanted to get things out, I was just like ‘I’ll just go on Logic.’ But it was never anything concrete. Just a hobby.”
Around the time she started making songs on GarageBand and Logic, Udu became obsessed with Eighties music. She had grown up loving EDM like Cascada and Calvin Harris as well as K-pop groups like BTS and EXO, but a Spotify recommendation of Tears for Fears’ “Everybody Wants to Rule the World” sent her into a nostalgia-fueled synth-pop rabbit hole that reshaped her taste and musical inspiration. (rollingstone.com)