dexter, one of the UK’s hottest rising musicians, has been making songs since 2020, after lockdown finally afforded her the time to work on music properly – though she credits watching High School Musical at the tender age of four as her musical awakening.
Now 19 and fresh off the back of finishing her A‑Levels, dexter’s fully immersed herself in making feel-good, introspective DIY tracks. “Last year, after leaving school, I wanted to make songs that people could dance to and play at a party,” she says, having adopted the alias “dexter” as a means of hiding that she made music from her family.
Her first few songs, including the pensive Maybe the Problem is Me and acoustic guitar-backed Same Way, were entirely recorded on her phone, before dexter upgraded to a vocal mic to record her critically-acclaimed debut EP, I Do Love a Good Sandwich. If you’re wondering about the name, dexter’s been known to review a sarnie or two on her Instagram page (Leon’s fish finger wrap has way too much tartare sauce in it).
“I feel like I’ve changed quite a lot [over the last two years] and I’m really enjoying the songs I’m making right now,” she says. “It feels like everything’s coming together naturally, which is nice.”
After most tracks on I Do Love a Good Sandwich were quick to rack up millions of streams, dexter followed them up with Pressure, a slightly distorted, dancey song that grapples with the nuances of growing up. This was also her debut release as RULESTHEWORLD Records’ first signing – the new label from cult streetwear brand Corteiz.
Since then, dexter has toured with Denzel Curry and supported Fred Again. Her last single, the deceptively upbeat Vexed, mixes breaks and catchy synths to let us know she isn’t prepared to have her time wasted: “Keep to myself, stay in my room all day /Not saying a word but you still find a way /To get in my head /Say words to make me upset”.
Since accruing all this momentum, dexter has been gearing up for the release of a fresh EP, Fortune Cookie, released today. “I hope people can relate to the songs on there as some of them are very personal,” she says. “And that they enjoy the new sounds I’ve been trying out – because it’s been very fun.” Get your 100% fill below.
10% Where were you born, where were you raised and where are you now based?
South London, South London and South London.
20% What emotions and experiences influence your work?
Probably my sadder ones. I find it very awkward to talk about those things, so I like putting them in songs instead. It’s so lit!
30% What’s a piece of advice that changed your life?
To not give up on things. I can get demotivated very easily.
40% What’s the most pointless fact you can share?
I had a KFC cake for my 10th birthday.
50% If you ruled the world for a day, what would go down?
Everyone who needs stuff would be able to get it – like food, housing or clean water. Also I would make everyone in the world jump at the same time to see what would happen.
60% If you could travel back in time to see an iconic music act perform, who would it be?
Michael Jackson in his Off the Wall era.
70% What’s a bad habit you wish you could kick?
Comparing myself to other people.
80% Like, love, hate?
I like stock images, I love Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and I hate gold jewellery. OK, maybe not hate, but I’m not a big fan of how it looks on me.
90% Describe the last holiday you went on.
I went to Lisbon in July with my friend and it was so good… until my phone got stolen. I was so sad because it happened on such a good night. And now I always see the person who took it on Find My iPhone, just moving around Lisbon.
100% What can artists do to help save the world?
Make music that people can relate to so they can feel less alone in their struggles.