Skipping homework to make music has paid off for South-West London’s dexter, who’s letting us into her world with her intimate debut EP ‘I Do Love a Good Sandwich’.
The newness of an idea or experience can be scary but equally exciting. For 18-year-old dexter this couldn’t be truer, having released her short yet sweet debut EP I Do Love a Good Sandwich. This is also partially to do with a certain openness surrounding the project now, as dexter (the moniker of Charmaine) kept the project a secret, working under her stage name anonymously. Her journey is entirely moulded by her instinct to make music, working on all of her releases while completing school with whatever resources or time she could dedicate, all while gaining notable recognition throughout the industry.
Born in South West London to a Nigerian heritage, she thanks all aspects of the diverse offerings her environment has had. dexter’s journey began back in 2020, releasing self-uploads created entirely on her phone but earned recognition from Annie Mac and Sian Eleri, and was added to Spotify’s Fresh Finds and Our Generation playlists. These tracks – “Maybe the Problem Is Me” and “Same Way” – have now amassed over one million combined streams.
Your EP is called I Do Love a Good Sandwich, what’s your favourite sandwich?
I don’t know if this counts, but my favourite Sandwich is probably a Filet-O-Fish burger from McDonalds, ’cause it’s the best burger ever. It’s amazing! It has everything you need in a burger – tartare sauce, cheese, fish – it’s the best ever.
Talk us through the process of creating the project!
If you could describe the whole experience in one word, what would it be?
I can’t think of just one, but maybe both ‘fun’ & ‘new’. When I started to make the songs for the EP, that was the first time I actually properly started to do sessions. Before this, I’d only ever done two sessions, so it was still really new to me.
How can you reflect on that process now that it has been released for over a month?
It kind of made me realise how smooth the process was for making an EP – all the songs were made literally within a month and a half. Thinking back on it, it was such a quick time period for then the songs were made. So yeah, that’s kind of what I’ve thought about it when I think back to creating it. It didn’t really feel like I was making an EP, it more felt like I was just making songs that I was happy with, and then I was like ‘Oh…this is enough for an EP!’
Thank you! I would probably say the most pivotal release of my journey so far is my song “Same Way”, which came out literally a year ago – in September last year. That was the first time people had actually messaged me saying ‘I like your music’. I was like ‘what?!’. It got 100,000 streams in a month and oh my gosh, I’ve never been more shocked in my life. Spotify put it on New Music Friday – and I actually didn’t even know what that was before – I had no idea what that playlist was. Then I found out that it was low-key a big deal that they put me on it, especially considering that I didn’t have any management then and I wasn’t signed. After that, I was like oh – people beyond like my five closest friends might actually like the stuff I’m making?
Have you done any live shows, and do you have any pre-show rituals?