Pop Can Getaway: An Interview with Orion Sun

Music — 18.03.22

Words: Brit Parks
Photographer: Tyler Borchardt

I used to roll empty pop cans in my hair for underground art parties in New York. There was a set of experimental shows in a garage on Avenue A and 1st. There were ten rows of white fold-out chairs and the audience was in the near dark. The musicians played, often modified electronics, when the sound faded we all hushed-left. There was no talk of who, just a silent receipt.

Tiff Majette aka Orion Sun is the kind of person you know you could take anywhere and she would hold open amazement, in the same beat a heart that has taken the rounds exudes empathy. When I inquire about her music I can tell it could be delivered cold without description. She recalls the idea that artists create in a vernacular that is singular to them. That is a language. Tiff has a face that can be set with a serene expression that positively cracks open when she smiles, not a set smile, all teeth, and joy.

Her music is profound in beauty. Her sultry voice is lacquer for no charge. She told me she constantly writes in her journal, fragments of conversation, word lists, anything of intrigue. She dispels her new gem is the phrase ‘Mountain Time’ as she was listening to Colorado radio and heard the phrase. I tell her I was born in Colorado in Mountain Time and I liked the phrase as it describes the pace and visceral feeling of the place. She tells me I am lucky. An old Harmony Korine short film comes to mind, he layered voices of young girls talking and stretching out common words like slung gum. The girls are then montaged in Proenza Schouler garments. The film treatment makes you feel like analog gravel and a bit like you may weep at the girls’ licorice voices of honesty in ATP dresses.

Orion Sun is a natural, that rare breed of an artist born burning at the seams to express. She grew up in a Gospel Church and has a deep reverence for her faith in God, I find it rare for a musician to reference this wrapped in a robe of other weighty influences. Tiff has no lines. She doesn’t see them. I think this quality is on high notice when you listen to her tracks with analog beats in the background of her pitch-perfect voice.

We spend time talking about why genres don’t serve a purpose unless as she notes you are trying to find something like a book in a vast library. Freedom is her company, she exemplifies it as she jumps in and out of tracks of lulled cool love, then pained lonely searching, to pure elusive mystery.

She uses the phrase ‘pride aside’ and it stays in my head days later as a mantra. She has a pure approach to her music which is why I think it reverberates emotional power. Tiff is the kind of person who has seen the lows and the heights of it all and yet she repeats to me, ‘we don’t have to stay here,’ as in this headspace, this actual place, or the ethereal here. She is like a human elixir, singing like beautiful candy about unfiltered truth and leaving you with liberty on your tongue.

Elegies, Sonnets, Tracks, Mixes. Come what may, it’s the mind behind them that wills them to existence. She told me she woke up with butterflies in regards to her new album coming out. She calmly remarks, “it’s time to let them fly away.

Listen to Orion Sun’s full album Getaway below and follow her on Instagram.