Caroline Alvares, Lauren Rammell, Sophia Saffarian and Yasmin Broom make up girl band Four of Diamonds. They took part in The X Factor in 2016, before being signed to Virgin EMI Records in 2018.
Was it always your dream to have a music career?
Lauren: For me yes, since I was eight years old and I realised I could sing. I knew I wanted to do it as a career. I played young Cosette in Les Miserables in the West End when I was 11. It was my first-ever audition and I got the part. I couldn’t believe it and that gave me the taste of an audience and the real passion and drive to want to experience that feeling again.
What was it like to go through The X Factor?
Lauren: If you can imagine the most pressure but the most rewarding experience. It’s like a fast track into everything you can expect from this industry. Photoshoots, interviews, live performances, but not just all the glossy bits you also experience criticism and trolling. It does prepare you for what’s to come but it’s almost like a really intense fast-tracked version!
Where did the name Four of Diamonds come from?
Lauren: We were trying to think of the names of the best hands in poker and cards but they were all sounding a bit lame like ace-high and royal flush! So we originally thought about Four of Hearts, given there’s four of us. But then we thought that Four of Diamonds actually felt like it had more of a ring to it. And diamonds are a girl’s best friend!
What are the best things about being in Four of Diamonds? And what are the challenges?
There are so many amazing things about being in a girl band which I appreciate every single day. The fact that I have gained three best friends being the best thing. You are never lonely and we are literally there for each other through the good and bad times. We have so many laughs, as people will see on our social media, but we are also there for each other in more difficult times to offer cuddles and advice. The only “challenge” I can really think of is that when learning a new song or doing the arrangement of a cover, it will take us much longer than a soloist for the song to come together as we have to spend more time learning our harmonies and blending our voices. Although I wouldn’t really call this a challenge as such; we always enjoy doing it and that’s why we’re a band!
How do you prepare for a performance? Do you ever get nervous before you go on stage?
Caroline: We do get nervous just before we’re about to go on.. but it’s normal to be nervous and I think it’s a good thing as it means you care. We’re all about turning the nerves into positive things and we normally just pump ourselves up by having a little jump around, warming up our vocals and speaking out loud about how grateful we are for the opportunities we have today and remembering how much we wanted to do this before we got together!
Which other artists do you look up to and why?
Sophia: Alicia Keys. She’s my number one inspiration. My mum brought me up on her music and her album As I Am was the first piano songbook I had. I used to sit at that piano for hours teaching myself her songs. Not only do I love her music, which I think is timeless… but I love everything she represents as a person. Her no-makeup movement is so brave and refreshing. She seems like a super family-orientated person too which I love. I am such a super fan haha!
What’s an average day like for you?
Sophia: It depends really. One thing about this career is there is no routine and you never know what’s going to come in the diary and when haha. It can be very last minute too. But the standard things we’d have come in the schedule are the studio, promo (interviews or tv appearances), content days (where we film things for our YouTube/social media). And then sometimes photoshoots and video shoots. It just depends on what we’ve got going on at the time really. On a day off I’d typically go to the gym, maybe use the pool and steam room because it’s good for my throat (and skin hehe) and maybe go for food with a friend.
What advice do you have for young people on following their dreams?
Yasmin: My advice would be to never listen to anyone if you’re passionate about your dreams. You can do anything you put your mind to. If you believe you will achieve! If people try and put you down try your hardest to not let it stop you or dull your shine. Jealous people can be cruel but you have to know your self-worth.
What one piece of advice would you give your younger self?
Yasmin: I would tell my younger self to stop worrying about what people think and do whatever I want. At the end of the day, I’m living my life for me and no one else. Never let any opportunity pass you by through fear of embarrassment or not being good enough because you will never know until you try. Chances are you will be fine.