Culture / Music

In Byron Bay with Kita Alexander celebrating her debut album ‘Young in Love’

Kitty Callaghan heads to Byron Bay's Swell Hotel to celebrate 'Young in Love', the debut album from singer and songwriter Kita Alexander.

A recent trip to Byron Bay to celebrate the many milestones in Kita Alexander’s world – the centrepiece being the upcoming release of her debut album Young in Love is an idyllic way to meet the album that Alexander penned in just one month in her hometown on Bundjalung Country.

“I can do everything with or without you” are words that seemingly sum up Alexander’s ethos in life, on dreamy pop ditty Zodiac. This sentiment and energy rang true during our time together staying at Swell Hotel. Alexander is our host, performing some of the songs from her new album and introducing friends to her youngest child, Rumi, and husband, Owen, effortlessly weaving all moments together.

After checking in and spending some time with Alexander, we were welcomed as a group by her performance and a delicious Mediterranean dinner by local Byron-favourite The Hut. When talking about the album’s conception during her performance, Alexander explained that this body of work was made on her terms: “I told the label, if I do this, I want to do it at home. I want to tuck my kids in at night.”

The songs on Alexander’s album are bubblegum-pop worthy, all the while nodding to the Fleetwood Mac- hued tones of her song writing on her first single release, My Own Way, back in 2015. Life has been full for Alexander since then – she has followed the path she always dreamed of as a musician while starting a family and marrying her husband. The songs on Young In Love are etchings of junctures along that journey – supporting and nurturing her partner after a surfing accident meant the opening chapters of their relationship looked a little different to most honeymoon periods; adapting and evolving in motherhood; and processing the common reality that becoming a parent can call into question one’s own childhood and relationships with parental figures (as explored on Bigger Person).

The cloud-like beds at Swell Hotel were a soft landing after Alexander’s performance. An early morning run and visit to the divine triplet of a sauna, ice bath and magnesium pool at the hotel’s adults-only playground of sorts moved up the list to “must do” status if you visit Byron Bay.


What was your biggest takeaway about your creative process when making Young in Love?

My biggest takeaway is that I am a really good songwriter, and that being a mum is one of the biggest work advantages a woman can have. You’re better at time management and quicker at most things because you’re incentivised to be spending the least amount of time at work and more time at home with your family.


Sonically, which artists have been your biggest influences over the past five years?

Sonically, I have been really influenced by Dijon, The Weeknd, Blood Orange, Charlie XCX and always and forever inspired by Fleetwood Mac.


During your performance at Swell Hotel you spoke about Bigger Person being about relationships with parent figures. What were some of the other themes central to writing this album?

This album is soulfully inspired by being young and in love. Navigating the relationships you’re in, be it family or friends or lovers all whilst you’re on a journey of discovering who you even are and learning how to be an adult in different situations that arise from our connections with the people around us.


When do you think you create your best work – is there a state of mind, a place, a period in your life that has been a canon event or driving force for your best song writing?

I create my best work when I have a moment to just sit by myself and dive into my psyche. We live in such a fast-paced world. Everyone’s lives are already filled to the brim; it’s easy to disconnect from our creativity. So, finding time to just sit and find an almost-meditative state is when I can really connect with what’s going on with myself and what I want to write about. I always thought that great art comes from a place of turmoil or big trauma, but with writing this album I found that a small, even fleeting, emotion can be exploited to create an incredible song. I really enjoyed pulling at the threads of my past experiences and different reactions I had (whether they were true within myself or not) to expand upon and create a story out of.


What are you most looking forward to about going out on tour?

I have never been on such a big tour before! I’ve got about 15 shows coming up in the next two months. I know comparative to a lot of musicians (like Taylor swift) it’s not many shows, but for me this is my biggest run yet! I’m most excited to see how I will handle it emotionally and physically. Touring is gruelling. It can be really tough being away from family and friends and also health-wise – not getting much sleep and flying a lots can really take it’s toll on the body.  I’m really looking forward to seeing how I can successfully navigate these stresses and see how I can come out the other side feeling stronger than ever.


Do you have any advice for young musicians trying to make their way in the digital age?

It’s taken me a second to see it this way, but I think it’s actually such an exciting time for young musicians in this digital age. You have the chance to make it yourself, be whoever you want all without anyone else’s help – be it managers or labels. Getting out there and studying the social media digital art of marketing has never been easier. We have everything we need at a click of a button, so why wouldn’t you take advantage of that and become as big as you want? That way you have leverage for when you do want to sign a record deal. BUT! I also I do want to add that you should never lose sight of the art itself. It always comes down to music before marketing. Hone your art, hone your skills and then don’t be afraid to market the hell out of yourself. Ignore what other people think, it’s only a bit cringey until you make it!



Kita Alexander’s debut album Young in Love is out today, 22 March 2024.


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