Photography by Therese + Joel
Sydney-born Betty Who moved to Michigan in her teens, which might explain her charming Aussie-meets-Midwestern accent. But a Home Depot in Utah is where her story really begins. Following the release of her 2013 debut EP, The Movement, last spring, a young man named Spencer Stout reached out to her team, asking to use her single “Somebody Loves You” in a flash mob proposal to his boyfriend, Dustin. The song’s appearance in the video of the event, shot at their local hardware store, proved a momentous occasion not only for the young couple, but for Who herself: More than 11 million YouTube clicks later, she’s signed a deal with RCA Records. “It was a big day for me in the gay community,” says the singer, who also performed the song at the couple’s wedding in February. For her next EP (slated for spring), Who plans to stick with the same ’80s dance-pop formula that made her first effort a hit. But now that her career’s taking off, she’s also taking inspiration from another, more contemporary, source: “I look at Beyoncé’s career and at the parts I want for myself and apply as much of her history as I can,” she says. If The Movement is any indication, Who won’t be following footsteps for long — she’ll be leading the pack.
LISTEN TO: The Movement EP
FOR FANS OF: Chvrches, Whitney Houston, Katy Perry