Culture Clash: Beka

Tracking cultural pursuits with the alt-pop talent...

BEKA has many strings to her bow. The London based pop creator is a potent solo artist, a nimble collaborator, and she’s also accepted some amazing commissions in the world of cinema and television.

A unique world-building talent, BEKA recently picked up the reins for Trying, the much-lauded Apple TV+ series. Charged with scripting the full soundtrack for the fourth season, she’s responded with a full album’s worth of riveting, revelatory pop music.

The score is out now, alongside the first two episodes of the new season of Trying. The work of an empathetic talent, Beka comments that her music serves as a reminder to listeners that “they’re enough, they’re a sensation, they’re powerful and they’re more loved than they know.”

Book

I’ve been treating Rick Rubin’s The Creative Act: A Way Of Being like a morning Bible lately. It goes: tea, lamp, blanket, journal and a chapter. It’s been so easy to equate my creativity with the west’s cultural expectation of what work ‘should’ look like and this book seems to bring back a permission for the ethereal flow state that I sense most of us created our first works with. He also leans into bringing some structure in how to move through a project and improve which can feel intangible at times. HUGE FAN.

Also mad for Alicia Keys’ Me, Myself and I book… I read it on my first solo holiday so I got all deep and let it feel like reading a manual for my ‘job’.

⁠TV

I am mad for TV because it gives my ADHD brain some silence! I have to say, Apple TV’s TRYING is absolutely bloody brilliant and although yes, I am biased after a year of writing the soundtrack for the new Season 4… I have to say it completely floored me when I binged series one to three.

My Dad is adopted and the programme explores a couples journey around adoption! I think these topics can often feel so heavy and clunky, but the writer Andy Wolton writes pure sunshine and lightness into the story so you don’t have to emotionally gear yourself up for each episode, but equally get to have a little cry and deep it too. Obviously season four is the best, so I’d highly recommend it (yes 100%, I did the soundtrack for this season).

Music

I’ve been obsessed with a playlist on Spotify called 60’s Italian Film Jazz because it makes any casual act in life suddenly feel deeply cinematic.

My favourite album at the moment is ‘Air’ by Sault. I listened to it for the first time on a walk in Hampstead Heath, preparing for playing in their show and cried my eyes out in public at how transcendent and moving it felt.

Film 

It will always be The Lion King. I used to watch it with my brother every single day after school. Second in line, is currently Past Lives. I felt like every inch of the choices made on colour, grade, actors, movement, scrip, location… felt, in themselves, like art. I escaped into it whilst also feeling enveloped and challenged and moved. Celine Song is in fact, a genius.

Gadget

Can I go analogue and say my Olympus Muji ii camera because she makes every day look suddenly like my history and a scene from my Grandparent’s albums. As classic as it is, I also have to thank the heavens for iPhone’s SIRI because the amount of ideas she actions for me whilst I’m in the shower, has saved my life. “Siri, what’s the weather today, Siri set a reminder for everything important I’ll forget today, Siri who’s birthday am I forgetting…” you get the idea.

Trying soundtrack is out now. The first two episodes of Trying: Season 4 are on Apple TV+ now.

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