Forest Claudette makes music that moves toward peace. The 23-year-old powers through life’s growing pains with diaristic songwriting, using their take on alternative R&B and pop to find oases in a troubling world. Their Warner Records single, “Mess Around” (made with genre-blurring rap duo EARTHGANG), encapsulates their beautiful but blunt honesty. Since the release of their 2022 debut EP, The Year of February, the singer-songwriter has begun to fully embrace their identity, including their Blackness and queerness, while reflecting on their relationships. For Claudette, music has long been a tool for self-discovery. Born to classically trained musician parents, they grew up in a small town in the Dandenong Ranges in Victoria, Australia, where they spent years trying to perfect their craft at an alternative-learning-focused high school. Claudette took piano, guitar, and vocal lessons, but realized that nobody could teach them how to write songs that told their story. Soon after winning a contest on triple j, Claudette started joining songwriting sessions and landed a record deal during a trip to Los Angeles. Their debut single “Creaming Soda” paired a woozy blend of soul, pop, and bruising rap sounds with intimate yet charming musings. Now, as Claudette continues to settle into who they are, they’re thinking about who else might draw comfort from their songs. “My goal is to keep learning about myself and sharing that with people, and hope that it connects,” they say.