Who, What, Why


17th October 2019


Colleen Livingston is a first-year student from Freiburg, Germany, studying Songwriting. We caught up with her to find out more about her life in music and her time studying with us.

WHO are you listening to at the moment?

I am constantly listening to new music so ask me that again in a week and I will probably say something completely different. Right now, I really love listening to Tori Kelly’s new album Inspired by True Events. I also love the concept of her live shows: it’s just her with her guitar and another guitarist, and that’s it. The way she can command a room with her voice and songs is simple yet so powerful.

Currently I am also listening a lot to James Bay. As an alumnus of BIMM Music Institute, I find him very inspiring and I love his songwriting. I was already a fan of his, but I started listening to him constantly when I found out that I was accepted at BIMM Institute. I still can’t believe I get to study at a college that has such incredible alumni!

I also enjoy listening to Larkin Poe at the moment because they are just so awesome and badass. They’re two sisters with an electric guitar and banjo playing really cool Blues Rock songs. I find it very interesting when songwriters play with different perspectives in their narratives and the world definitely needs more women in Blues Rock!

John Mayer will always be my answer to ‘Who are you listening to at the moment?. I worship his live Album, Where The Light Is from his show in 2008 in LA. If I could turn back time, I would definitely see that show. It must’ve been so amazing! Not only is he one of the best guitarists of our times but he’s also an incredible songwriter and such an inspiration to me.

WHY did you choose songwriting?

I started writing my own songs and playing the guitar when I was 12 and it’s been my way of dealing with the world ever since. I hear my songs with a band when I compose them, and I can’t wait to find other musicians here to enrich my songs even more. I am also a huge fan of Dirk Darmstaedter (his solo albums and the Jeremy Days) and it’s an honour to be able to learn from him. As an American who grew up in Germany, I chose BIMM Institute because I finally get to speak English with other native speakers.