time in New York City, her passion for music and songwriting blossomed. She was 13 years old, living next to Central Park in New York, when she seriously started writing music. “I would listen to Simon and Garfunkel’s Live in Central Park record and I just imagine what it would be like to have been at that concert,” Lily says. Early on, songwriting was a private matter. It wasn’t until she turned 20 that she met her first producer and music became her career. The process, Lily recalls, was a bit daunting. “I started to learn about the music business — which seemed like the most terrifying business in the world.” She combats her intimidation of the business with — what else? More writing. The competitive culture of both New York and L.A. has helped to develop her sound and her drive. Most importantly, Lily says, the culture causes her to constantly evaluate why she continues with music. “It’s definitely strange that a lot of people do have the desire to do something similar and I am in cities where people who do those thing, and do them well, like to live. But its part of my soul, and regardless of doing this out in the world, I am always going to do it.” To date, that method has worked to keep her sane in the industry, and has harbored her love for songwriting. Daydreaming in Central Park has now turned into a passion for songwriting that Lily says “[Is] inextricable from my life and who I am.” Lily says, “The writing of the music is more important than the business for me … I think
you just have to remember why you started. Like, what made you write the music to begin with, and write from that place. You do a disservice to the people who your music is reaching if you forget that.” Lily has certainly experienced an evolution in character since the release of her last record. After a month on her first tour with the band Radical Face, Lily fell down a flight of stairs and slipped two discs in her back. She could not walk for six weeks. According to Lily, though it was the most excruciatingly painful experience of her life, the ordeal helped her grow as an individual and taught her a lot about pain, love and expectations. “That has brought a whole new perspective on my 22 years. Like, what pain is, and what are limitations in your mind, and what are limitations in your body. And its interesting because you see who shows up for you to be a friend or to be helpful,” says Lily. She explains that many of her friends couldn’t stand to see her in so much pain and some couldn’t visit her until she was better. The experience changed the way she approached writing too, because for a while, she couldn’t pick up her guitar, or leave her house for a new perspective. “It was weird because usually you write a song, you clean out your closet, you go for a jog — you can get out of your environment,” Lily explains. Being unable to remove herself from her workspace due to her back, she was forced to face and develop the ideas that are present in her debut album. Lily just finished touring the U.S. in support of Midnight in the Garden. The album was
released by Nettwerk Records in late September of 2013. Lily halfjokingly says she has been surprised by the positive reception of the record. “I try not to think about it in the terms of that it exists outside of my little bedroom where I wrote the music. But then its weird because you meet people from, like, Columbus, Ohio, and they’re like ‘I love [this song]’” It seems like Lily is in a dreamlike state, where she doesn’t realize that people are listening to her songs all over the country, and soon Europe too. After her current tour wraps up, Lily plans to tour Europe, specifically France. In the meantime however, she has been working on music for her next album “I feel like this next record will probably be just [my] 22, 23 [years] — which is weird because that’s a very different time. Like who knows who I’m even going to be on that record?” Now that she is in the recovery process, Lily says everything from writing and touring, to being positive and kind is easier. With this new perspective she now knows that any obstacle that befalls her is manageable. For now, she is humbled by her career and plans to continue to write and put out more music in the coming year. Following the close of her U.S. tour, she will go overseas for a promotional tour in parts of Europe. Even though Lily has big plans, she continues to be modest. She says that for now, “I’m just very grateful that I get to tour, that I get to sing, that I get to write music. I’m just grateful. It makes me so happy. And scared. But that’s the best thing, because then you feel alive.” NKD NKDMAG.COM
Published on Apr 1, 2014
Featuring: Sasha Pieterse, Stefanie Scott, The Vamps, Paradise Fears, ISSUES, Misterwives, Austin North, Melanie Martinez, Spencer Sutherlan...