Isabella Summers

Isabella Janet Florentina Summers[1][2] is an English Emmy nominated musician, songwriter, producer, remixer and composer. She is a founding member of British indie rock band Florence and the Machine.

Isabella Summers
Isabella Summers at Dean St Studios, 2011
Isabella Summers at Dean St Studios, 2011
Background information
Birth nameIsabella Janet Florentina Summers
Also known asIsa Machine
Born (1980-10-31) 31 October 1980 (age 41)
Hackney, England
Genres
Occupation(s)
  • Musician
  • songwriter
  • producer
  • composer
  • remixer
Years active2008–present
LabelsUniversal Publishing

Early lifeEdit

Summers was raised in Hackney by her mother, a painter, and her father, an antique and antiquarian book dealer who had attended The Royal Academy of Dramatic Art where he studied theatre, television, film, and radio. He was a bohemian who made mixtapes long before she was born and as a young child Summers was exposed to an eclectic mixture of poetry, literature and musical influences including rare Bob Dylan, Gyorgy Ligeti, The Shipping forecast and all things in between.

At the age of 8 Summers and her family moved to Aldeburgh Suffolk , the hometown of the composer Benjamin Britten. There she would be given her first recording boom box, Summers would record herself singing Madonna songs a cappella, telling stories onto cassette tapes and beginning a life long passion for all things creative. At the age of 10, she attended piano lessons where she learned how to build chords, write melody and music theory, eventually achieving grade 5 piano.

Her father would regularly take her to car boot sales in search of vinyl records to add to his extensive collection. This sparked Summers's own interest in collecting vinyl records and would enjoy listening to both her own and father's records together, Simon and Garfunkel was an early favourite. In her teens she began to attend concerts and fell in love with live music attending raves, hiphop gigs, classical concerts and many theatrical plays.

Heading back to London at 18, after high school in Woodbridge, Summers got a job working for her father’s acting agent, and was sent to the theatre five nights a week to watch all the cutting edge theatrical productions. In her early 20s Summers attended Central St Martins School of art and studied fine art 'the fourth dimension'. During this time she made horror films and scored them as part of her course. She composed music for a Vivienne Westwood Climate Change Show in 2007. This would be the beginnings of her career in composing and scoring to picture. At this time Summers had various jobs working for “Top of the Pops”, XFM and The All City Hiphop show where she met rappers like The Game and Guru. Summers also worked as a transcriber and film digitiser for Alan Parker.

Soon she was working with Dan Greenpeace on his XFM London 'All City Show' radio show, an experience that led Summers to buy her first Music Production Center which was installed in her shared flat at the time. With the help of a friend she started a studio in a former factory in Crystal Palace, London, and began making Hip hop music.

During this time, Summers worked with Kashmere, The Iguana Man, IRS Crew, MBC Crew, Inja and The Last Skeptik.

Whilst working out of her studio in Crystal Palace, London she met Florence Welch.

Florence and The MachineEdit

Summers was hired to remix songs by the band Ludes; Florence Welch was dating one of the band members and became a more common sight at Isabella’s studio. Summers was eager to start working and writing with other women as she had been working solely with men in the hip hop scene. She invited Welch to write a song with her and so their creative collaboration was first born. Isabella and Florence though already knew each other for years, because as a teenager Summers was a frequent babysitter to Welch's sister Grace, and the two had kept in touch, so meeting each other in a music setting was more of a coincidence. Following a day matching beats with Welch's lyrics, they were creative partners, with Welch nicknaming Summers "Isabella Machine" for her ability to compose music on a variety of instruments. This led to their performing for a time as "Florence Robot/ Isa Machine". It was renamed, as according to Welch "that name was so long it'd drive me mad.”

Florence and the Machine released their debut album Lungs in the United Kingdom on 6 July 2009. The album was officially launched with a set at the Rivoli Ballroom in Brockley, South East London. It peaked at number one in the UK Album Charts and number two in Ireland. As of 6 August 2009, the album had sold over 100,000 copies in the UK and by 10 August it had been at number two for five consecutive weeks, and after charting for 28 consecutive weeks, it won the BRIT Award for Best British Album.[3] Following its 25 July 2009 release for download in the United States, the album debuted at number seventeen on the Billboard Heatseekers Albums chart, ultimately peaking at number one. The album was released physically in the US on 20 October by Universal Republic. The album was produced by James Ford, Isabella Summers, Paul Epworth, Steve Mackey and Charlie Hugall. Summers also co-wrote & co-produced 6 songs on this record[4] including the title track Between Two Lungs and Dog Days are Over.

The band's second album, Ceremonials, was released on 31 October 2011. It debuted at number one on the UK Albums Chart and number six on the US Billboard 200.

On 12 January 2012, Florence and the Machine were nominated for two Brit Awards, with the awards ceremony taking place on 21 February 2012 at the O2 Arena, London.

On 26 April 2012, the band released "Breath of Life", produced and co written by Summers’ a song which was recorded as the official theme song for the film Snow White and the Huntsman.

In February 2015, Florence and the Machine announced their third album, How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful, which was released on 1 June 2015. The album reached Number 1 in many markets including the US,[5] the UK,[6] Australia, and Canada. The record spawned two top 40 UK hits, and earned three Grammy nominations.[7]

During June 2015, Dave Grohl of the Foo Fighters broke his leg[8] on stage prior to his band's upcoming Glastonbury Festival headline performance, causing Florence and the Machine to be the headline band.[9]

They headlined the festival for the first time on 26 June 2015.[10]

Producing & songwritingEdit

Summers is credited with co-writing and producing 5 tracks on Lungs[11] and 3 on the album Ceremonials.[12]

She also has three song credits on the deluxe album How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful" including the title track, How Big How Blue, How Beautiful.[13]

As well as the Florence and the Machine credits Summers has written, produced and remixed tracks for artists including Beyoncé,[14] Juliette Lewis,[15] Jennifer Hudson,[16] Jasmine Thompson,[17] Cara Delevingne,[18] Pablo Dylan, Mondo Cozmo, Kacy Hill, Jessica Simpson,[19] Chloe x Halle,[20] Flux Pavilion,[21] Maxine Ashley, Rita Ora, Judith Hill,[22] LP[23] and The Game.

Summers has been instrumental in developing other artists including Jeremy O. Harris and LP.

Isabella took Jeremy O’Harris on tour with Florence and The Machine for four formative years.

Summers met LP and they cowrote the song ‘Someday’ they then went on to write many songs together including the title track of LP’s debut album Forever For Now, helping to create her sound.

ComposingEdit

Riviera (TV Series) 2017 (Sky Atlantic)Edit

Summers created the main title song 'Was it Love' for the Sky Atlantic TV Series Riviera .[24]

Assassination Nation (Film) 2018Edit

Isabella’s first foray into film composing was when she gave her friend Sam Levinson a piece of music that he used as a composition in Assassination Nation.

Little Fires Everywhere (Miniseries) 2020 (HULU)Edit

She teamed with Mark Isham to create the score for Little Fires Everywhere[25] which won her her first Emmy Nomination.[26]

Panic (TV Series) 2021 (Amazon Prime Video)Edit

Summers composed the score for Amazon’s TV Show Panic. Also included within the soundtrack is a new original song performed by breakout pop singer-songwriter Tate McRae entitled “Darkest Hour.[27]

Sex/Life (TV Series) 2021 (Netflix)Edit

Summers scored Netflix series "Sex Life”, which was watched by 67 million people in its first 20 days of release.[28]

Physical (TV Series) 2021 (Apple TV)Edit

Summers scored Apple TV’s Physical starring Rose Byrne[29]

Call Jane (Drama Film) 2021Edit

Summers has recently completed her first score for upcoming indie film Call Jane directed by Phylis Nagy. Based in the late 1960s she created contemporary music for that time period and some classical score.

The Offer (TV Series) 2022 (Paramount+)Edit

Summers composed the score for Paramount+ TV Show The Offer released in May 2022.

Solo workEdit

Summers is working on her first solo album which is set for release in spring 2022. It will feature multiple guest vocalists.

Awards & nominationsEdit

Associated awards with Florence and The Machine List of awards and nominations received by Florence and the MachineEdit

Emmy Nomination (2021)Edit

Emmy nomination for Best Original score Little Fires Everywhere[30]

2021 ASCAP London Music AwardsEdit

ASCAP Award for score of Little Fires Everywhere.[31][32]

2021 Hollywood Music Media AwardsEdit

Nominated for 2021 Hollywood Music in Visual Media award for score of Apple TV Physical "Score - TV Show/Limited Series".

InfluencesEdit

RZA’s and Prince Paul’s productions sound were key influences for Isabella.[33]

Summers loved the darkness and simplicity of three chords vamping on a loop - a technique she would apply in the writing of “Dog Days Are Over” and Cosmic Love.

Bernard Hermann is her favourite composer although she sites the Jaws soundtrack by John Williams as an important influence.

Gyorgi Lygeti is also one of Isabella’s favourite composers.

“I have seen most important artworks in the world as we toured so relentlessly worldwide . The simplicity and depth of Rothko is breathtaking , and magnificent , I also connect with his outsider mentality.”

Isabella says CY Twombly's 50 days at Ilium in the same gallery as Prometheus Bound by Peter Paul Reuben’s was life changing for her.

DiscographyEdit

Year Artist Album Track Role(s) Label Note
Writer Producer
2009 Florence and the Machine Lungs Are You Hurting the One You Love Yes Island Records
Between Two Lungs Yes Yes
Cosmic Love Yes Yes Also remixed with DJ Lexxx Remix
Dog Days Are Over Yes Yes
Falling Yes Yes
Ghosts Yes
Hardest of Hearts Yes
Hospital Beds Yes
I'm Not Calling You a Liar Yes Yes
2011 Florence and the Machine Ceremonials All This And Heaven Too Yes Island Records
Breath of Life Yes Yes Digital deluxe bonus track
No Light, No Light Yes
Remain Nameless Yes Yes Digital deluxe bonus track
Ivan Ink 'n' Isa Ivan Ink 'n' Isa - EP Caught in Symmetry Yes Yes Brink Records
Lover's Kiss Yes Yes
Silver Or Lead Yes Yes
Standing on a Hill Yes Yes
2012 Dia Frampton Red Bullseye Yes Yes Universal Republic
Florence and the Machine Snow White and the Huntsman Breath of Life Yes Yes Island Records
Sam Sparro Return to Paradise Shades of Grey Yes EMI
2013 Angel Haze Dirty Gold Rose Tinted Suicide Yes Yes Island Records
2014 LP Forever For Now Forever For Now Yes Yes Warner Bros. Records
Some day Yes Yes
Road To Ruin Yes Yes
Iggy Azalea Reclassified Trouble (featuring Jennifer Hudson) Yes Virgin EMI Records
The Game (et al.) Single Don't Shoot No Yes Multiple labels Feat. Diddy, Rick Ross, 2 Chainz, DJ Khaled, and others.
2015 Florence and the Machine How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful Delilah Yes Island Records
How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful Yes Yes Includes deluxe edition demo credit.
Which Witch Yes Yes
Flux Pavilion Tesla Never See the Light feat. Andrea Martin Yes Yes Circus Recordings
Katharine McPhee Hysteria Hysteria Yes Yes N/A
Burn Yes Yes
Lick My Lips Yes Yes
Don't Need Love Yes Yes
Isa Machine and LP Rock the Kasbah Torch Yes Yes Varèse Sarabande
2017 Isabella Summers Riviera (TV Series Soundtrack) Riviera TV Series Soundtrack Yes Yes
2018 Isabella Summers and Ian Hultquist Assassination Nation Rage Yes Yes Lakeshore Records
2020 Isabella Summers Little Fires Everywhere Little Fires Everywhere TV Series Score Yes Yes Hollywood Records
2021 Isabella Summers Panic Panic TV Series Score Yes Yes Milan Records
2021 Tate Mcrae Panic Soundtrack The Darkest Hour Yes Yes Milan Records
2021 Isabella Summers Physical Soundtrack Physical TV Series Score Yes Yes Lakeshore Records

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ American Society of Composers Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) IPI no. 565587995
  2. ^ "Isabella Janet Florentina Summers - Credits - AllMusic". AllMusic.
  3. ^ "Florence And The Machine take MasterCard British Album prize at Brit Awards 2010". NME. 16 February 2010. Retrieved 25 October 2021.
  4. ^ Lungs - Florence + the Machine | Songs, Reviews, Credits | AllMusic, retrieved 25 October 2021
  5. ^ "Florence + the Machine Scores First No. 1 Album on Billboard 200 Chart". Billboard. Retrieved 25 October 2021.
  6. ^ "Official Charts Analysis: Florence & The Machine beats Wolf Alice to No.1 by 528 sales | Analysis | Music Week". www.musicweek.com. Retrieved 25 October 2021.
  7. ^ "Florence & The Machine". GRAMMY.com. 23 November 2020. Retrieved 25 October 2021.
  8. ^ "Foo Fighters star Dave Grohl 'breaks leg' in stage fall". BBC News. 13 June 2015. Retrieved 25 October 2021.
  9. ^ "Florence + the Machine 'honoured' to headline Glastonbury as they send love to Dave Grohl". NME. 17 June 2015. Retrieved 25 October 2021.
  10. ^ "Florence + the Machine 'honoured' to headline Glastonbury as they send love to Dave Grohl". NME. 17 June 2015. Retrieved 25 October 2021.
  11. ^ "Lungs (album)", Wikipedia, 18 October 2021, retrieved 25 October 2021
  12. ^ "Ceremonials", Wikipedia, 13 October 2021, retrieved 25 October 2021
  13. ^ How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful - Florence + the Machine | Songs, Reviews, Credits | AllMusic, retrieved 25 October 2021
  14. ^ "Isabella summers music". Last.fm. Retrieved 25 October 2021.
  15. ^ "Juliette Lewis". Rogue Magazine. Retrieved 25 October 2021.
  16. ^ "Trouble (Iggy Azalea song)", Wikipedia, 10 September 2021, retrieved 25 October 2021
  17. ^ Jasmine Thompson – Wonderland EP (2017, File), retrieved 25 October 2021
  18. ^ "The Truth About Cara's Singing Career". British Vogue. 21 November 2013. Retrieved 25 October 2021.
  19. ^ "Jessica Simpson and Isabella Summers". Facebook. Retrieved 25 October 2021.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  20. ^ "The Kids Are Alright (album)", Wikipedia, 10 September 2021, retrieved 25 October 2021
  21. ^ Flux Pavilion – Tesla (2015, Blue Translucent w/ White Glitter, Vinyl), retrieved 25 October 2021
  22. ^ "The Songs In 'Little Fires Everywhere' Will Make You Want To Break Out Your Discman". Bustle. Retrieved 25 October 2021.
  23. ^ "Laura L P Pergolizzi and Isabella Summers of Florence and the Machine... | FilmMagic | 142749447". www.filmmagic.com. Retrieved 25 October 2021.
  24. ^ "Isabella Summers Writes Theme Song for TV Series Riviera". www.umusicpub.com. Retrieved 25 October 2021.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  25. ^ Grobar, Matt (17 August 2020). "'Little Fires Everywhere' Composers Mark Isham & Isabella Summers Talk Moment Of Creative Breakthrough On Hulu Miniseries". Deadline. Retrieved 25 October 2021.
  26. ^ "Isabella Summers". Television Academy. Retrieved 25 October 2021.
  27. ^ Central, Film Music. "Isabella Summers". Film Music Central. Retrieved 25 October 2021.
  28. ^ "'Sex/Life' Season 2 Is Happening at Netflix After 67 Million Households Stream First Season". Movieweb. 27 September 2021. Retrieved 25 October 2021.
  29. ^ "Isabella Summers to Score Apple TV+'s 'Physical' | Film Music Reporter". Retrieved 25 October 2021.
  30. ^ "Isabella Summers". Television Academy. Retrieved 25 October 2021.
  31. ^ https://www.ascap.com/londonawards21
  32. ^ "2021 Hollywood Music Media Awards List of Nominations". www.hmmawards.com. Retrieved 12 November 2021.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  33. ^ Ottewil, Jim. "Isabella Summers on Florence + the Machine to Emmy-nominated scores". composer.spitifreaudio.com. Spitifire Audio. Retrieved 16 May 2022.

External linksEdit

  Media related to Isabella Summers at Wikimedia Commons