TikTok has made unexpected superstars of those who best convey the experience of being human, messy and honest. And if relatable is to TikTok what aspirational was to Instagram, it’s no wonder Peach PRC has amassed 1.5 million followers on the video app loved by Gen Z. While she is, these days best known for her viral hit ‘Josh’— a simultaneously scathing and sugary sweet exposé of ex boyfriend Josh, the unfiltered commentary and mental health explainers she grew her following on, are better detailed in songs like her latest release ‘Heavy’— a brutally honest and lyrically complex piece that showcases her true musical prowess.
While sharing every moment of her day in face-to-camera pieces for TikTok comes naturally to Peach, it has been a wildly important part of fostering the fast-growing fan base online that has since catapulted her to mainstream musical success. Starting on the app in September 2019, her content has been a mix of covers, original music, comedic bits and her running train of thought on any given day, including how she manages her ADHD and bipolar— all unfiltered, completely raw and clearly part of what her audience loves so much about her and her content. As for whether it feels daunting to share so much of herself with her audience, she tells Centennial Beauty, “I do get asked that a lot but I really don’t find it scary. It does have its consequences,” she explains, “you know, it’s a lot to put out there but I don’t ever regret it or feel like it’s daunting because it’s how I’ve always been. Whether there are five people listening or 500,000, I’ve always shared my life that way, so to me, it’s normal.”
When Peach mentions consequences, she could, in part, be referring to a controversy surfacing earlier in the year between herself and L.A. based TikTok star and singer, Nessa Barrett— Nessa accused of plagiarising the video clip concept for her song ‘i hope ur miserable until ur dead’. The video bears striking similarities to the video for ‘Josh’, something Peach noted online which quickly picked up viral traction, fans of both parties posting side by side comparisons and weighing in themselves.
But the benefits of her honesty online far outweigh the negatives: “There was a girl I met not long ago that ran up to me and I gave her a hug and he was saying that my TikTok [videos] and my music have helped her friends understand her bipolar better— she would send them my TikTok [videos] or send them my songs and they said “Now we feel like we get what you’re going through.” That meant a lot to her and that meant a lot to me, it was really beautiful. I love hearing that from people,” she says. Something both distinctive and admirable about Peach’s brand overall is her commitment to platforming mental health— a common thread throughout her TikTok content and her music and something she can speak to with authority and authenticity given her own mental health experience.
“I think maybe because I talk alot about mental health, not just in my TikTok [videos] but also in my music,” she tells Centennial Beauty of why she resonates so strongly with her young audience. “A lot of my music is about various mental illnesses that I deal with and I think…at least, I haven’t heard a lot of music that talks about it in such a way.”
“It’s called depression pop,” she says, describing what feels like a genre completely unique to Peach. Flipping the notion that speaking [or singing] your truth has to come in the form of a ballad or be tear-jerking to be genuinely raw and emotional. “I think people that are going through those things, it’s nice to have fun music you can listen to that’s still like pop music but also is relating to your own personal experience,” she says.
On her rise to fame, Peach PRC’s astronomical growth has been almost entirely during two years of global lockdown. As the world opens up however, she is not starting from scratch building an audience or fan base, the way musicians may have had to do in the past. “It’s been so motivating and so beautiful,” she tells Centennial Beauty of her experience growing her TikTok following. “The community of people that I have…I did a show a couple of nights ago and I’d tweeted about it— it was only the first 50 people [to arrive]…I embarrassed myself so bad but the people that follow me on TikTok are the most understanding and supportive community of people. It was really nice that everyone was like “No, you did great”, when I know I didn’t, but that’s the kind of people that follow me, I’m really lucky and I’m really blessed,” she says.
The next big thing in the pipeline for Peach will be performing at TikTok’s first ever For You Fest on Wednesday 8th December, alongside some of the platform’s most influential creators. “I guess the only way to do it is just to do it. [For You Fest] will be my technically third ever live performance and oh my god, I’m so nervous but I guess you just have to do more of it to get used to it,” she says.
“I’m just kind of taking everything as it comes. I’ve already come so much further than I thought I would, so anything beyond this is a bonus…I would love to put some more depression pop songs out there,” she says and laughs. “Hopefully 2022 will just be full of music and meeting people.”
Stream For You Fest live on @tiktok_australia from 8pm AEDT, Wednesday 8th December, 2021.