Amelie Lucille Pool

“Pool” by Amelie Lucille Immerses You in a Wave of Emotions

Fifteen-year-old indie folk singer-songwriter Amelie Lucille reveals a clear love for classical music. Her compositions display a uniquely powerful voice and deep passion for her musical roots. Amelie’s music, characterized by its confessional and intimate nature, is a captivating blend of expression and artistry. The NYC artist takes us inside her head on her creative process for the release of her latest single, “Pool.”

Amelie Lucille
Amelie Lucille Pool

Amelie Lucille Unveils the Emotional Side of an Old Soul

POETRY DANS LA RUE: Do you have any routines that you follow to stay creative and focused in your art practice?

Amelie Lucille: “Simply put, consistency. I attend a performing arts school. I am consistently surrounded by music and talented musicians. Attending a performing arts school allows me to constantly be working on my craft. It gives me the opportunity to play different instruments and listen to different kinds of music. I think it helps me stay creative, gets my musical juices flowing, and helps me stay focused.”

PDLR: What role does your personal identity play in influencing your artistic style and themes?

Amelie Lucille: “I’m obviously still very young, and it might sound kind of cheesy, but I am still figuring out who I am going to be. I think when it comes to music, I have always been drawn to emotional songs. When I say emotional songs, I mean really depressing, sad songs. I think I have always been in that aesthetic. When I say that, I’m referring to artists such as Phoebe Bridgers, Olivia Rodrigo, Lizzy McAlpine. I like to be in tune with my sad emotions.” 

“I have always been drawn to emotional songs”

PDLR: In what ways do you seek to evolve or grow as an artist, and what strategies have you found effective in managing your art? 

Amelie Lucille: “I am trying to learn to play more instruments. My main instrument is the guitar, but I am trying to learn how to play piano next. I’m learning to like the opportunities I get when it comes to performing live. I’ve found that performing live helps build my fanbase and audience. It encourages me to make new music. I love that I can get out of my comfort zone.”

PDLR: Can you share a particular artist or song that has had a significant impact on your musical journey, and how has it influenced your own music? 

Amelie Lucille: “Yes, my parents have the best taste in music. Growing up, I listened to “Weird Fishes” by Radiohead. The artist who has impacted me the most this year is Adrianne Lenker, the lead singer of Big Thief. She is insanely genius. Adrianne and I have a very similar style of music. I’ve listened to her music for an unhealthy amount of time. I think I definitely draw 100% of my influences from her.”

“I want the audience to be left feeling more”

PDLR: When your fans listen to “Pool,” what is something that you want them to take away from the song or leave with them? 

Amelie Lucille: “If you listen to the lyrics and the overall story you can tell that it’s coming from a narrative perspective and not me just explaining a situation. It’s about someone who is feeling used in a relationship. Towards the end, you start to understand there is more anger coming from the person. I want the audience to be left feeling more. Whether you can relate to it from a personal experience or just feeling moved by the song.”

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Lily Fitts Lovin' Life Music Fest

Lily Fitts Debuts Effortless Set at Lovin’ Life Music Fest

Lily Fitts shared the main stage with role model Noah Kahan at Lovin’ Life Music Fest in Charlotte, NC. The Boston-area folk singer-songwriter encompasses charm and poise, gaining popularity through her captivating covers of Zach Bryan, Noah Kahan, and Dylan Gossett, among others. Her original music combines a hint of country and folk with her signature vocal rasp. Recent singles “Boston to Barcelona,” “Lose You Now,” and “Buying Time” give her momentum going into a busy summer of festivals. Sharing the Lovin’ Life stage with her idols, including Stevie Nicks, marks a significant milestone in her career.

Lily Fitts
Lovin' Life Music Fest

Lovin’ Life Music Fest: First Festival Performance

Lily Fitts demonstrated confidence on the Lovin’ Life main stage as she admitted, “This is my first festival performance. I only recently had my first stage performance with Zach Bryan not too long ago.” Recognizing her talent, Zach Bryan welcomed the young singer-songwriter on stage to perform “Oklahoma City” at his headlining tour last summer in L.A.

Joining some of her long-time influences for her first festival was an immensely surreal experience for Lily. When asked about her favorite moments, she gushed, “All of the sets I saw at Lovin’ Life were incredible. I was definitely excited to see Stevie Nicks as she is one of my biggest influences, but Post Malone, Noah Kahan, Maggie Rogers, Mt. Joy, The Fray, and Ripe were all so fun and inspiring to watch.

Lily Fitts
Lovin' Life Music Fest

Performing on Sunday ahead of Noah Kahan’s headlining set brought fans in early to see Lily. Kahan’s fans likely know her from her cover songs being shared across TikTok and Instagram, with “Stick Season” being the most prominent. “It’s hard to choose just one favorite Noah Kahan song, but “Stick Season” is the most sentimental because that cover really jump-started everything for me on social media. It gave me the confidence to pursue music full-time. I also love “Homesick,” “No Complaints,” “Glue Myself Shut,” “Growing Sideways,” “Mess,” “The View Between Villages,” and so many more.”

Raw Songwriting and Vocal Talent

Lily draws inspiration from real-life experiences when writing relatable, emotional lyrics for her original music. As for her sonic influences: “I love raw, natural, and acoustic sounds. I try to incorporate that heavily into all of my songs.” During her set, she seamlessly transitioned between songs, sharing a new track with the crowd about her daily struggle with anxiety. “What They Say” takes us inside her head as she expresses there isn’t a quick fix when it comes to mental health. Songs like “Boston to Barcelona” and “Hurts Like Hell” undoubtedly drew music fans into Lily’s set, creating a deeper connection with her audience.

Lovin’ Life Music Fest only kicks off the performances for Lily this summer. She heads out on a mostly sold-out tour across the States with Michael Marcagi on May 13th. “I’m so so excited; I can’t believe it! I’m also playing Summerfest, Bonnaroo, and Sommo Fest! I’m planning to release more new music this summer as well.”

Lily Fitts

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Elijah Woods

Elijah Woods Chats New EP Ahead of Sold-Out Asia Tour

Toronto-based pop singer-songwriter Elijah Woods recently sent Swifties down a nostalgic rabbit hole with his Taylor-inspired single, “the way that we started (taylor).” His latest EP, silver lining (March 2024), includes three emotionally raw tracks about losing a close friend. Elijah’s gracefully crafted songwriting and infectious melodies capture the hearts of many listeners in the pop music scene. We catch Elijah for a quick Q&A as gears up for his sold-out Asia tour and opening date with Niall Horan in Jakarta, Indonesia.

Elijah Woods
Niall Horan

Elijah Woods Q&A

POETRY DANS LA RUE: We’ve been following your music on social media and loved “the way that we started (taylor).” What was it like with the overwhelming reaction to that song? 

Elijah Woods: “Thank you so much! That was a fun one to write. It honestly started as a songwriting exercise, but when I finished the song, it felt too good not to release. I think the social media response gave me the confidence to put it out.”

POETRY DANS LA RUE: Your new EP (silver lining) really showcases your songwriting talent and ability to connect emotionally with listeners. Can you talk about your songwriting process for this EP?

Elijah Woods: “Writing silver lining was pretty cathartic. I was genuinely just trying to process the loss of somebody close to me, and this was me going through those emotions. It’s funny because the songs actually ended up in chronological order of when I wrote them. I didn’t realize that until literally yesterday!

The first song, “second guessing,” highlights my anger and confusion about the situation. Then, “losing a friend” was very much me coming to terms with the fact that this relationship was over, and I needed to find my own closure in that. Lastly, “silver lining” is an internal conversation about how despite everything I’ve been through with this person, I still only see the best in them. Overall, this project put a lot of things into perspective for me, and I hope it does the same for anybody listening.”

Ahead of Asia Tour & Opening for Niall Horan

PDLR: What are you looking forward to most about your tour and opening for Niall Horan?

Elijah Woods: “I’m still in disbelief that this is happening! Getting the opportunity to play in front of that many people and one of my idols at the same time is going to be a massive highlight for me.”

PDLR: Are there future plans for a US tour? Who would you like to open for in the US/CA?

Elijah Woods: “That’s something that’s definitely at the front of my mind. I can’t wait to connect with all of these people who have changed my life. I’d love to go on tour with LANY.”

PDLR: Any advice for young indie artists finding their way in a fast-paced industry?

Elijah Woods: “Make things that fuel you to make other things. The only times I’ve noticed a downfall in my creativity is when I was on a path that didn’t make me happy.”

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Taylor Contarino Bare Minimum

Taylor Contarino Shows Her Artistry is More than “Bare Minimum” on Latest Single

Authentic singer and songwriter Taylor Contarino takes on the music industry with her latest release, “Bare Minimum,” out April 19, 2024. The small-town artist moved from South Jersey to Los Angeles and is currently pursuing her education and dreams. She is a lover of all things that revolve around music. Taylor is authentic in showing her vulnerability through her music and who she is as a person. She is an inspiration and the definition of an artist in every way.

Taylor Contarino
Bare Minimum
Photographer credit: Karly Ramnani

Q&A with Taylor Contarino

POETRY DANS LA RUE: How did you first become interested in music, and what inspired you to pursue a career as a musician?

Taylor Contarino: “I had a passion for music from a very young age. My mom would always play Eminem through the ups and downs of life. It provided constant comfort for her through the trials she faced with my father. I’ve had a deep love for music since my childhood and started attending concerts at a young age. During the pandemic, I began using my time to write about music, especially about 90s hip-hop music. I created a hip-hop music blog my freshman year, while living in New York. After creating my blog, I ended up getting more opportunities in music, and eventually, after working with a couple of independent labels and opportunities, I landed at Universal Music Group.”

PDLR: Can you tell us about your songwriting process and where you draw inspiration from for your music?

Taylor Contarino: “My musical process…I love making music! I could cry over how much I love it. It’s literally my outlet. I don’t see it as a thing I have to do but rather as a thing I get to do. Being able to take words and make them sound pretty or using my voice to say how I feel is the greatest thing ever!

Like yesterday, I was freaking out because I’m realizing that I’m graduating college in a month, and I’m going to have to become a big girl, you know, and I’m really scared about that. I’m going to have to be an adult. I’ve started writing how I feel about that. My creative process comes from moments like that, where it’s like I’m in the moment, and my emotionality takes over.

“It’s when I am at my breaking point that my music starts to evolve.”

That’s what I love about music; if I can’t turn to anything else or anyone else, I can always turn to my piano. I can always turn to Logic, like my software. I can always turn to my notes and write down how I’m feeling. It’s like I can turn my heartbreak into healing and my pain into beauty. Yeah, I sound like a poet, but I love that.

I also wrote a poetry book, which I released in the fall. Writing means a lot to me. Being able to express how I feel, letting it resonate with people, and making it sound beautiful means so much to me.”

PDLR: What do you enjoy most about playing in front of an audience?

Taylor Contarino: “Oh, I hate being in front of an audience. I’m crying because I love that you asked me that question, but I hate being in front of an audience. I have to force myself to get in front of an audience. I know that’s so weird, but it’s so scary. I’d rather be sitting in my room making music. But on the contrary, I know that it’s an important part of music. Performing is a part of being an artist. Every single time I perform, I’m getting stronger.

I have this thing where whenever something scares me, I force myself to do it. What’s the alternative? To hide from it my entire life? I’m a firm believer that if something scares you, you have to do it. Every time I get on stage, I’m conquering my fears, and I’m really just taking ownership of my body, words, voice, and the way I feel. I know that the more I perform, the better I’ll get at it. I don’t think practice makes perfect, but I do think practice makes progress.”

“Bare Minimum” Coming Soon

PDLR: Can you talk a little about your upcoming single, “Bare Minimum?”

Taylor Contarino: “Of course, I’m so excited! On April 19th I’m dropping ” Bare Minimum” part one, the single. It’s all part of a story from my last couple of months. The whole EP drops on April 26th, one week later from the release of the single. I purposely made it this way because I wanted part one to be a description of the things that I’ve been going through and the way I have been feeling. Part one, “Bare Minimum,” was written and made to be more emotional. Part two is going to be more of an anthem for healing and moving on, more of a motivating piece of music.

The whole EP intends to tell my lived experience and what I went through over the past couple of months with a relationship I used to be in. I’m really excited about the project and am so excited for the world to hear it. I’m just grateful to God. I can’t believe that I’m really putting an EP out because there was a time when I had given up on music for a long time.”

PDRL: What do you hope listeners take away from your music?

Taylor Contarino: “The only thing I ever wanted was for listeners to be heard, seen, and represented. That’s really all I have ever cared about. If people listen to my music, then that’s great. But for me, no matter what, I was able to use the creation process to heal through experiences the music refers to.

All the music that I make is real. The things that I’m saying actually happened. My mom never let me lie growing up. She always said, ” I would rather you say that you did something crazy than lie to me.” Growing up, if I went to a party, my mom would rather I call her and tell her I did something stupid than lie. My mom was heavy on the “Don’t lie to me,” just tell me how it is and be 100% honest.”

Future Collaborations and Music

PDLR: Are there any future projects or collaborations that you’re excited about?

Taylor Contarino: “Yes, I have so many. I’m so grateful! I’ve been working on so much music recently. I have four songs that I am currently working on and that I can’t wait to share with the world. I have a song called “God’s Business.” It’s a song about finding out that my grandpa has cancer. Sorry, not to get depressing, but we are working through it. There’s another song I’ve been working on with an incredible producer and talented bassist/guitarist called “Deadbeat.” It’s about my drug-addicted father.

Currently, I’m also working on a love song and another song about hating the club. I went two weeks ago, and I wrote a song called “I’m Over the Club.” I realized that I really don’t like going to the club. Why does it have to be so loud? I don’t know when I’m going to release these songs yet, but I’m very excited to share them with everyone.”

PDLR: Do you have any advice for aspiring musicians looking to break into the industry?

Taylor Contarino: “Of course! Don’t give up! If you never give up, you can never lose. My advice to anybody is to just keep going. I wish that I could have told myself this two years ago when I gave up on music; I wish someone were there to tell me not to give up. If you give up, what’s the alternative? What are you going to do? You’re going to be sad, and you’re going to regret it every day. Honestly, that’s how I was feeling. That’s why I continue to make music.

I also had a friend who sent me a long paragraph. Actually it was more like she wrote a book, basically, on why I should continue making music, which is the reason that I started doing it again. I love her, and she’s amazing! Her name is Rachel, and she’s one of my best friends. I am so grateful for her!

I would just tell people to keep going on their dreams because you never know when there’s going to be motion. You never know when you are going to succeed. Even if you don’t have a million streams, you are still a musician because you are making music. Don’t let the numbers, social media, or anyone tell you that you can’t do it. As long as something makes you happy, then keep doing it. Don’t be afraid to say how you feel.”

PDLR: How long have you been releasing music in general and professionally? 

Taylor Contarino: “Since my sophomore year of college, about two years ago. That’s around the time I also gave up on music because I felt like I wasn’t good enough. I felt scared of people reacting to my music and thinking I wasn’t good enough. That’s when I realized that it doesn’t matter if people think I’m good enough as long as I think I am. It’s about how I feel and how I perceive myself.

Once I changed my perspective, I was able to enjoy the artistic, creative process and the healing process. I am open to collaborations and working on art with other people. Everything I do is because of the love I have for the art.”


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The Dream X

The Dream X: Exclusive Interview with the Genre-Bending Artist

Latin American reggaeton rapper The Dream X takes the globe by storm with his infectious singles “Tijuana” and “BLA BLA” ft. Monaleo. The Salt Lake City-based artist sits down to chat about growing up as a classically trained opera singer to blending various genres in his recent project. With over 350,000 streams on “Tijuana” and no stopping in sight, fans of Bad Bunny, Jack Harlow, The Weeknd, or MGK will want to pay attention now.

The Dream X

Q&A with The Dream X

POETRY DANS LA RUE: How long have you been releasing music in general, and professionally?

The Dream X: “I started releasing music in 2020, but more so as a hobby, not necessarily as a professional career. Back then, the releases that I put out were mainly opera. Being classically trained in opera helped with melody building and lyrics. Going into music as a profession has always been a dream, so being able to do it now as an artist feels surreal.”

POETRY DANS LA RUE: After listening to your singles “BLA BLA” and “Tijuana,” I love the contrast between the two with the languages and the styles.

The Dream X: “I wanted to do something different with the two. “BLA BLA” is more culturally significant. I wanted to break the language barrier between these two countries to bring my music to different people. Even if people don’t understand everything, it joins English and Spanish together. We made “BLA BLA” with Monaleo, a hip-hop sensation, so we were very excited to have her featured on the song. She’s definitely a lyrical genius.”

The Dream X on Influences & Dream Collabs

PDLR: What genres or artists do you consider your main influences for songwriting?

The Dream X: “I have a lot of artists that I look up to to create the sound that I have. I love Bad Bunny, The Weeknd, and Post Malone; there are a lot of influences that go into it.”

PDLR: Any artists who are under the radar that inspire you?

The Dream X: “There’s an artist I follow who makes these beautiful beats. I listen to his music, and it makes me feel like I want to make something with the same energy. I work with him as well, so it’s great to feed off of that. His name is Michael Piroli.”

PDLR: Who would be your dream artist to collaborate with?

The Dream X: “I have an entire list of people I’d love to work with! My #1 dream collab would have to be Machine Gun Kelly. The second person would be Feid. Others would, of course, be Bad Bunny and Swae Lee…”

“Drama” Coming Soon

PDLR: Can you talk a little about the next single that is coming out?

The Dream X: “I’ve been working on a lot of music. The song that we are planning to release next is called “Drama.” It’s also very different from the previous two; it’s partially in Spanish with more English. I combine four different genres on this track. It’s a mix of pop, moombahton, reggaeton, and rap. It’s set to release this month.”

PDLR: What advice do you have for young indie artists or artists who are just starting their journey?

The Dream X: “Don’t give up because many people will discourage you. People will tell you you’re losing money and pouring money into it, and that it won’t pay off, etc. Which is true, but it’s worth it in the end. Dream big, work hard, and make it happen. If it’s your dream and what you want, go for it. You’ve only got one life. It’s up to you if you’re going to leave a legacy or leave a mark on this world.”

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Ryan Hommel Daisy Jones

Daisy Jones Music Director, Ryan Hommel, Releases First Album in 8 Years

For the past two and a half years, Ryan Hommel worked alongside the cast of Daisy Jones & The Six as the guitar/bass coach and Music Director. Yes, that means he taught cast members like Sam Claflin and Riley Keough to play guitar and become a band in the hit series for Amazon Prime Video. Through the ups and downs of the pandemic and the steadfast dedication of the production team and cast, Daisy Jones & The Six came to life in 2023.

Ryan Hommel, a Massachusetts-based guitar player, songwriter, and singer, recently released his first album since 2015. Default To Open is the second full-length album from Ryan, dating back to 2016 when he recorded these songs. The lead singles from this album showcase his raw talent and knack for penning songs that resonate with a wide range of music fans. Gaining insight into the stories behind these songs makes the album all the more intriguing to hear them after eight years.

We had the pleasure of chatting with Ryan Hommel to learn more about this collection of songs. In the past eight years, Ryan welcomed a lot of changes. Of course, the pandemic delayed the filming of Daisy Jones & the Six, but the time spent with the cast solidified his journey as Music Director. After touring with Amos Lee’s band as a guitar and pedal steel player, Ryan welcomed a baby girl earlier this year. Going from uncertainty to fatherhood has led Ryan to new endeavors, beginning with the release of Default To Open.

Ryan Hommel Daisy Jones

Ryan Hommel Interview

POETRY DANS LA RUE: You seem to be all over recently with Daisy Jones & The Six, your music, and your family. What’s the backstory to where you are now?

Ryan Hommel: “I’m originally from Massachusetts. My wife and I met here and decided to move to L.A. together. We lived in L.A. for about four years, which included the time during the pandemic, then we moved back to Massachusetts when we found out we were expecting a baby. Now we have a five-month-old daughter.”

PDLR: So I saw your album, Default To Open, was recorded in Nashville. Can you talk about that time in your life?

Ryan Hommel: “We recorded the album almost entirely in Nashville at Blackbird Studio. I used to drive a lot from Massachusetts to Nashville. I wanted to absorb the world of country music that I didn’t grow up in. Being surrounded by that community, I became passionate about playing pedal steel and met many people in the music industry.”

Behind Default To Open

PDLR: You recently released “Bury Me” and “All the Time in the World” as the first two singles. Can you talk about why you led the album with those songs?

Ryan Hommel: “When I listened to the whole record, those songs popped out to me as singable. I love songs that you can immediately sing along to. It makes listeners feel the song is familiar and they’ve known it forever. I’m not saying these songs achieved that necessarily, but most of the record doesn’t come close to doing that. Some other songs are more exploratory, longer, and experimental in songwriting. “Bury Me” and “All the Time in the World” felt like a good way to introduce the record to new ears.”

PDLR: I’ve had more time with the singles, of course, than the other tracks, but I do agree. “Bury Me” has been in my head a lot. It is singable and maybe more melodic, which people can easily pick up on. I also picked out “Wide Open” from the other songs, which was a little longer. It was more in-depth, and I liked the direction it went.

Ryan Hommel: “That’s great to hear because “Wide Open” is the first song I ever wrote. Default To Open is made of songs like that. It was my first experience putting these songs together from different times. Default To Open has been finished for eight years, since 2016. It almost feels like a compilation album, putting pieces of my writing together but only from a decade ago and earlier. The most recently written song on the record is the last track, “Brent Song.” I wrote this as a friend of mine passed away eight years ago. So the album comprises pieces of my life from before until 2016.”

“From an archiving standpoint and gaining a new perspective with my daughter being born, it matters that these songs are out there.”

Ryan Hommel: “I’m glad you responded to “Wide Open.” It feels surreal to me that that song will be in the world. From an archiving standpoint and having a new perspective with my daughter being born, it matters that these songs are out there. It’s also cathartic and rewarding to know that my daughter will be able to find that.

Sitting on these songs and having more time to reflect gave me an extended perspective. I feel more lighthearted about the record and less attached to it as a whole, but it’s a point in time that paints one picture.

I’ve done a lot of touring and come across so many songwriters. I’ve had more time to absorb how artists perform, interact, and adapt. You can interact with your art in many ways, and people will find their meaning once it’s out there. Art and music breathe new life into other people, and they breathe new life back into it.”

PDLR: Do you have a specific song that was the most rewarding to write or that you hit exactly what you were trying to convey?

Ryan Hommel: “I think “Wide Open” came out exactly how that song should be presented. Even if I’m unsure what that means, I’ve never felt that after recording a song. “Wide Open,” “Bury Me,” and “All the Time in the World” were songs that I recorded by setting up a guitar and vocal with a drummer in another booth at Blackbird.

All of the vocals on this record are primarily live, with the main guitar layer and the drums. Filling in the blanks with bass, other guitar parts, pedal steel, and keyboard was rewarding. It was me supplementing the barebones tracks we had from the recordings. I felt proud of “Wide Open” from the initial performance and what it was after we finalized the production.

In the song “Same Side,” the album’s third single, I played everything from top to bottom. “Same Side” occurred at my friend Ryan Ordway’s studio in New Hampshire. I went in with this song and planned to record it in a day. I started with an acoustic guitar and a vocal and added drums, bass, some other guitars, and pedal steel. Going in with a blank canvas like that and sitting back and listening after a day is a satisfying feeling.”

Musical Influences

PDLR: Who were some of your musical influences growing up, or who inspires you in your music?

Ryan Hommel: “My dad introduced me to a lot of guitar-based music as a young teenager. He was trying to get me out of my Stevie Ray Vaughan fixation at that age. He bought me a Steely Dan, a Jeff Beck, and a Robben Ford record. The guitar playing was nothing like what I was listening to at the time. My dad tried to show me that while Stevie Ray was excellent, there was another world of guitar players.

Before that, the music in my house was Stevie Wonder, Aretha, and Elvis Presley. Those were my first music memories, along with Ray Charles, Jimi Hendrix, Buddy Holly, and Howlin’ Wolf. My favorite current band has been Dawes. They are my gold standard in writing, performing, playing, and overall class and evolution.”

Daisy Jones & The Six

PDLR: How did you come into your role with the Daisy Jones series, and what was it like working with the cast?

Ryan Hommel: “So when my wife and I moved to L.A. at the end of 2019, I got a call from Tony Berg. He is an incredible producer and one of my producer heroes (Andrew Bird, Phoebe Bridgers, boygenius). I met him the year before, and he kept telling me to move to L.A. When we decided to move, he called me and said he had a two-month gig to teach guitar and bass to a handful of actors. The actors would come together and make this fictional band known as Daisy Jones & The Six from the book by Taylor Jenkins Reid.

At the time, Blake Mills and Tony Berg were running Sound City Studios in L.A., where many iconic artists have recorded. The show signed Tony as the Music Consultant for Daisy Jones & The Six and Blake Mills as the Executive Music Producer. Blake Mills wrote or co-wrote and produced all of the music for the soundtrack (alongside collaborators Tony Berg, Phoebe Bridgers, Taylor Goldsmith, Marcus Mumford, and Chris Weisman, among others). A huge bonus was the proximity to and the use of Sound City. The reality of the songwriting process and location mimicked the book’s storyline. So, plugging this fictional band into that time period and space was so surreal.

“The initial call was to have Daisy Jones & The Six be a fully functional band. If you put them on stage, they should be able to play this music flawlessly.”

I was set up across the street with Frankie Pine, the Music Supervisor, and a handful of other music coaches (drums, keyboard, vocal). We were working with the cast across the parking lot from Sound City. I was teaching Riley Keough (Daisy Jones), Will Harrison (Graham Dunne), and Josh Whitehouse (Eddie Roundtree) at the time, which was January 2020. Sam Claflin (Billy Dunne) came in around when everything shifted because of the pandemic.

They kept us remotely working on Zoom to keep the band learning. The cast members needed help learning their instruments and focusing on their characters’ roles, so most of that was done individually. Because I had been doing that, working with them collectively as a band made sense. So that’s how I fell into the role of Music Director for them as a band. Enter Suki Waterhouse (Karen Sirko) and Sebastian Chacon (Warren Rhodes), and we had Daisy Jones & The Six.”

Ryan Hommel Daisy Jones
Ryan working with Riley Keough (Daisy Jones)

“The initial call was to have them be a fully functional band even though they will be miming to recordings on the set. If you put them on a stage, they should be able to play this music flawlessly. That was a tall order, but everyone did their best and committed to the role.

Before we finally started shooting after the delay, we gathered the band at SIR in Hollywood for a private showcase. The showcase included everyone involved in making the show, like Taylor Jenkins Reid (book author), the Hello Sunshine media crew, Scott & Lauren Neustadter (creator), Reese Witherspoon (executive producer), Amazon, all the music crew, and more. It was particularly humbling to be a part of something that massive.

They absolutely achieved their goal, and they played the songs. They pretty much played the AURORA record front to back. Nabiyah Be (Simone) sang “A Song For You.” It was remarkable to see it pay off after keeping it going for so much longer than expected. They can all play and sing and have a natural chemistry that you can feel in the room.

My role transitioned into being on set with them whenever music was on camera. It was such a thrill to be there and coach them through those scenes. They were driven, motivated, and dedicated to learning to play music together, which certainly shows.”

PDLR: That’s incredible to hear your perspective. When reading a book, you envision how it will look. But then there was the uncertainty of not knowing if the show would happen or when. So when you hear it from you, it’s cool to see they came together as a band and learned it. You can see the realness in the show and the chemistry that you mention.

Daisy Jones Ryan Hommel

Looking Ahead For Ryan Hommel

PDLR: What’s next for you after the release of Default To Open?

Ryan Hommel: “The last record I put out was in 2015, and I began writing Default To Open around the same time. Of course, all these years have passed, and life has changed significantly. I’ve taken myself off the road to be with family and raise my daughter with my wife. I want to be present.

Releasing this record is putting me back in the game of how the industry works today. I’ve aided many people or worked on other records as a producer but haven’t put myself out there in a long time. I thank Greg Hall for running the backend of the album release and managing this campaign.

We hope that this album sets me up for future releases. I’ve already started working on the next record, which is more rooted in my life now, becoming a father and what family has come to mean. I enjoy getting the word out there and connecting with people in the music industry.

Ryan Hommel Ghost Hit Recording
Ghost Hit Recording Future Home of the 1 to 1 Sessions

After releasing this record, I’m starting a new live in-studio video series. It’s something similar to Daytrotter or Audiotree. This project would be about working with new artists that I usually wouldn’t have the chance to, but they are coming through town on tour or local to this area.

The idea is to bring them to Ghost Hit Recording studio in West Springfield, MA, where I often work. The studio was built into this church from 1800, and the live room is the sanctuary with the original pipe organ. It’s just a place where you feel especially compelled to make music. I’d love to bring in artists as a stop on their tour and cut some live footage, very minimally mic’ed. It’s going to be called the 1:1 Sessions. It’ll be a YouTube channel and a website.”


Be sure to check out Default To Open, available on all streaming platforms. Keep up with Ryan’s endeavors on social media and follow the 1:1 Sessions on Instagram and YouTube.

FOLLOW RYAN HOMMEL

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Lucky Iris maybe i'm too much

Lucky Iris Talks New Candid EP ‘Maybe I’m Too Much’

The dynamic pop duo from Leeds, U.K., Lucky Iris, releases maybe i’m too much, the group’s most recent EP.  Lucky Iris is Maeve Florsheim and Jasper Exley, forming their group just before the height of the pandemic in 2020.  POETRY DANS LA RUE has followed Lucky Iris since the release of “Get Ready With Me,” an addicting pop track that can pair with any Reel or TikTok. 

On maybe i’m too much, the group follows a reflective journey with candid lyrics juxtaposed by energetic pop music. Lucky Iris comes into their sound and pushes the limits, especially with tracks like “23” and “blowing kisses.” Recently, the group had their songs featured on BBCR1, Love Island, and BBC Introducing…which mark major career highs for the duo.

We catch up with Lucky Iris to gush over the release of maybe i’m too much and chat about all things behind the scenes.

Lucky Iris maybe i'm too much

Interview ft. Lucky Iris

POETRY DANS LA RUE: It’s so wild to reflect on when we first connected in 2020 for the release of “Get Ready With Me.” I love seeing how you guys have evolved in the past few years!

LUCKY IRIS: “We wrote those first tracks just before the pandemic. The lockdown was pretty quick here in the U.K., so it was a lot of calling between the two of us trying to release the songs. It was nice to have people like you pick up on it early. It reassured us that people were enjoying the music.”

‘maybe i’m too much’ EP

PDLR: So, your EP, maybe i’m too much, is out now! I remember listening to “23” when it came out. I noticed the production and was enamored by how it captivates the listener. Then I dove into the lyrics and the meaning of the track. I felt like this one set the bar!

LUCKY IRIS: “Since lockdown, the production has been self-taught by both of us, and we’ve been able to craft and produce our own music for the first time. We’ve had so much more time to sit with the tracks and sounds to make it feel how we want. I’m glad to hear you picked up on it.

When we first started and made “Get Ready With Me,” we wanted to make music that we wanted to listen to. The kind of music and the soundscapes have changed in a couple of years, but we still like that concept. We’ve grown into this sound, and this is the first time we’ve put our spin on all of it.”

PDLR: That’s awesome, and it shows on the tracks! Did you work with anyone else in the making of this EP?

LUCKY IRIS: “So it’s produced by just us, doing everything ourselves. We sent it off for the final production to be mixed by Richard Wilkinson, who has worked with Adele. Then it went to mastering in Denmark by Antony Ryan, who works with Oh Wonder.

We love writing songs, and we love producing, but it’s nice to have more ears to hear it in different spaces. It also helps to raise the sound quality and elevate the tracks. Our aspiration for this EP was to do what we’re doing but take it to the next level.”

“I think “23” will still resonate when I’m turning 53 because it’s the same retrospective idea of where you are at the time.”

PDLR: Can you provide more insight into the writing process of the EP and discuss what you were pulling from for the material?

LUCKY IRIS: “We were in a better headspace after lockdown and getting back into a normal routine. It was exploring the ways that we’ve grown. So with “23,” it was the idea of where we are now after these last couple of years. It feels like we blinked and woke up in 2023.

Now, I’m in my twenties, and I’m trying to be present, but you have all of these pressures. I realized that some of the things I want have changed since 2020. It comes with getting older in general; the ideas of what I want for my life are changing. The song is about that and how it’s not necessarily a good or bad thing.

I think “23” will still resonate when I’m 52, turning 53, because it’s the same retrospective idea of where you are at that time. You’re always reflecting.”

PDLR: I think the idea you explore on “23” is relatable to many different generations. People could be going through significant life changes and reflecting on where they are at any given time.

LUCKY IRIS: “Out of all the tracks, “23” is quite emotional because it perfectly captures the feeling of us coming out of lockdown and feeling a bit lost. Our entire EP is like this growth period, and “maybe i’m too much” is also a special track because it’s one of the first we wrote as a backdrop to the EP.

I think it started as quite a sad track about taking in all the impressions other people have of us. It has since grown as we’ve changed it into a rather joyful track. It’s about realizing those things don’t matter, and you shouldn’t give time to people who want to change you. The lyrics stayed the same, but the meaning was different. It’s saying, well, ‘maybe I’m too much, but maybe that doesn’t matter at all.’

“oh no (i guess i did it again)” worked similarly because it started as a trivial argument in a pub. It ended with this idea that I won’t allow people to tell me where I belong, and their opinion doesn’t matter. I didn’t necessarily write it expecting those feelings, but it’s very cathartic.”

“Having our songs be on the main radio station we listened to growing up was a huge pinch-me moment.”

PDLR: I’ve had “blowing kisses” in my head for the past few weeks; it’s definitely an earworm! I also saw that you recently had both of your latest singles on BBC Radio 1.

LUCKY IRIS: “We were so excited about that. It’s something we always dreamed about. Having our songs be on the main radio station we listened to growing up was a huge pinch-me moment. It was nice to have validation and achieve a longtime goal. After hearing “oh no (i guess i did it again)” and soaking it all in, they played “blowing kisses” the following week. To have that kind of reassurance meant a lot.”

PDLR: That’s exciting to have traction with the EP coming out!

“We like the juxtaposition of the lyrics being more melancholy and the feeling more energetic.”

PDLR: Any specific influences or something you were listening to while you were making maybe i’m too much?

LUCKY IRIS: “We listened to a lot of hyper-pop music because it brought us a lot of joy and put us in the mindset. We fell in love with more and more artists in that niche, and now we’ve kind of created our version of that. So, there may be some more surprises along the lines of that style to come. Some of the artists we had on rotation were Rina Sawayama, Tove Lo, Caroline Polachek, Charli XCX, and Kim Petras. We like the juxtaposition of the lyrics being more melancholy and the feeling more energetic.”

Upcoming Events for Lucky Iris

PDLR: Do you have any special events or shows coming up?

LUCKY IRIS: “We’re doing an intimate record store show on August 11th when the EP comes out. We’ll play the EP in full live and celebrate with friends. Then we’ve got a tour booked TBA soon, touring most of the U.K. We are eager to get the music out there and perform it for everyone.”

Listen to the brand new EP, ‘maybe i’m too much,’ from Lucky Iris below, and follow them on social media to keep up with their latest news.

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Seye Adelekan

Seye Adelekan of Gorillaz Chats Therapeutic Single “A River”

Seye Adelekan is best known as the bass guitar player with the animated U.K. band Gorillaz. Adelekan, a man of many hats, is also a multi-instrumentalist, composer, producer, lyricist, and solo artist. His new single, “A River,” is the first release from his upcoming EP with the same title. Seye’s articulate songwriting, hypnotic vocals, and melancholy lyrics set his music apart from anything he has previously worked on. “A River,” out today, touches the listener immediately with its alluring introduction, emotionally charged vocal performance, and melodic chorus. This incredible song holds an unparalleled spot on our blog, where we chat with Seye Adelekan as he embarks on a remarkable new journey.

Seye Adelekan of Gorillaz
Photo by Dav Stewart

Artist Q&A: Seye Adelekan

PDLR: How has performing live with Gorillaz shaped you as a solo artist?

Seye Adelekan: “The best thing I’ve picked up is the importance of collaboration. No great artist is an island or has all the best ideas or abilities. If you surround yourself with great people who help you do what you do best or add something you cannot, then it all just adds up to a better result.”

PDLR: What is one of your most memorable moments from touring with Gorillaz?

Seye Adelekan: “There have been many, but I would say anytime we go to South Africa, it’s always one for the ages.”

Seye Adelekan
Photo by Dav Stewart

“A River”

PDLR: In “A River,” you describe the need to help someone while also going through your own struggles.  Can you provide more details about the backstory of this track?

Seye Adelekan: “The song originated almost as a stream of consciousness. My friend Charlie had the chords, and we just turned on a microphone, and those words and melody came out! It felt like I was speaking to my slightly younger self, reaching out into the past when I was lost.”

PDLR: Did you work with other artists, producers, and collaborators for the making of “A River?”

Seye Adelekan: “My dear friend Charlie Morton is a long-time co-writer and production partner. Our friend Yves Fernández was also there during the writing process in Iceland, where we did the initial sessions for the upcoming EP. Both top lads and help me to be a better me!”

“Slow down, rest your head. They may be gone, but it’s not the end.”

-A River

Upcoming EP & Overall Sound

PDLR: What is the overall inspiration/theme for your upcoming EP?

Seye Adelekan: “The themes are hope, sobriety, love, and a bit of loss. Loss of an old self. I was also inspired by the Icelandic landscape. It gives a cooler temperature to the songs, I feel.”

PDLR: What do you want your fans/music fans to know about your musical style as a solo artist? 

Seye Adelekan: “My music sounds nothing like the people you would have seen me perform with in the past. I think that’s a good thing, and I hope my fans have an open mind to getting something sometimes melancholy, sometimes sweet, not super upbeat, but always melodic. The tracks bounce instead of bop, haha; if you like Bahamas, John Mayer, Ryan Adams, or Bon Iver, there is probably something in there for you.”


“A River” is out now on all streaming platforms. Check out the music video below, and follow Seye on social media for more upcoming news.

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Marcus Machado Blue Diamonds

Marcus Machado Talks Blue Diamonds, Vinyl, Prince, and More

Talking with NYC guitarist Marcus Machado is like catching up with someone you’ve known for ten years. Marcus Machado partnered with Soul Step Records this May to release his most recent album, Blue Diamonds, on vinyl. He first partnered with Soul Step for his debut album, Aquarius Purple, in 2021. Both albums have been an enormous success for vinyl sales and in the realm of guitar, R&B, funk, hip-hop, and jazz fans. This year, Marcus has played Jazz Fest, featured his music in an E! special, and collaborated with many artists in the industry. We sat down with Marcus Machado to discuss everything from his Prince influence, his vinyl collection, and his new album, Blue Diamonds.

Marcus Machado Blue Diamonds

Interview with Marcus Machado

PDLR: I love your debut Aquarius Purple and your recent release, Blue Diamonds, especially on vinyl. Can you talk about the backstory of those albums?

Marcus Machado: “The story with Aquarius Purple is that the album was eight years in the making because back in 2008-2009, I was living in Amsterdam for a couple of years. I had so many songs recorded for Aquarius Purple. Then around 2017, a friend of mine reached out to me about doing a score for a short film. I never had that opportunity before, so I recorded some songs for the film and had the idea to turn them into a soundtrack album. That’s where the concept of Blue Diamonds originated.

I brought in a lot of different musicians for Blue Diamonds. There’s a strings section, bass players, and drummers, and we recorded it all in one room. Once I recorded those songs, Blue Diamonds was finished in 2017. It was initially going to be my debut album. I hesitated when the pandemic happened because it was linked to the short film and a soundtrack album. Blue Diamonds was produced more, like the Super Fly soundtrack by Curtis Mayfield. It has a real 70s type of vibe. I realized I wanted to finish Aquarius Purple since it was more guitar-driven and felt like a debut album.”

Marcus Machado on Blue Diamonds

PDLR: What inspired the name of the new album, Blue Diamonds?

Marcus Machado: “It was just the name of the short film Blue Diamonds. I wondered if it should be called something else or if I should call it, ‘The Soundtrack to Blue Diamonds,’ but it just fit the whole approach.”

PDLR: You collaborated with many people on Blue Diamonds, like Brian Owens and Jermaine Holmes, and mentioned other instrumentalists and collaborators. Can you talk about that experience?

Marcus Machado:Jermaine Holmes was the background vocalist for D’Angelo and The Vanguard. Sandra St. Victor is like my second mom. She’s the legendary singer from The Family Stand. They had their hit song called “Ghetto Heaven.” She collaborated with Chaka Khan and worked with Prince on the Emancipation album. Sandra is the only person he credited in the album notes, “Beautiful lyric by Sandra. Speaking 2 the heart…reflections live 4ever in mirrors.” I also worked with Miguel Atwood Ferguson, an incredible conductor and orchestra player. He does all the work that you hear from Flying Lotus. There are so many incredible musicians on this album, James Biscuit Rouse (drummer), Lez Lemon (bassist), and songs featuring Brian Owens, Kennedy, Rojo Lavoe, and TFox.”

PDLR: So far, I’ve pulled out “I Can’t Lose” ft. Jermaine Holmes and “Stop” ft. Brian Owens as the songs that caught my ear. Did you have any favorite songs during the writing process?

Marcus Machado: “It’s funny that you mention “I Can’t Lose” because that was the first song I started for this project. The film has a part with a funeral scene, and they wanted something bluesy but soulful. Immediately those chords and that melody started coming to me, and “I Can’t Lose” was written to music. I wrote it in about ten minutes. I sent it to Jermaine, and he came up with its whole concept. He made it like an anthem. Whatever it is that you’re going through, you can’t lose.

One of my favorite songs is “Pass Me By” ft. TFox, which just came out. I love “Thinking” ft. Miguel Atwood Ferguson. “Dig” is another favorite because I was able to be in the studio and experiment with different guitars, which I wasn’t able to do with Aquarius Purple. At the end of “Dig,” the engineer accidentally hit a button on the console, and the track immediately slowed down. I wanted to keep it in because it was interesting at the end, even though it was an accident. This album has a wide range of experimentation I hadn’t done on the previous record.”

Marcus Chats About Vinyl & Soul Step Records

PDLR: Did you collect vinyl when you were younger, and do you have a current collection?

Marcus Machado: “I’ve always been a big vinyl collector, vinyl head, and being young, my mom had a crazy collection. She influenced me in all the different genres. In our house, it was Earth, Wind & Fire, Jimi Hendrix, Miles Davis, Joni Mitchell, and John Denver. As I got older and into my favorite music, collecting and listening to vinyl was natural. I’m an 80s baby, seeing music evolve from cassette, CD, to digital. I loved going to the store and purchasing music.

A lot of my collection is in Amsterdam. When I was there, I was able to go to London and Germany, and some of the records they have there, we can’t get here. Even my grandmother has a crazy vinyl collection. My collection is spread out, and it’s something that has always been in the family.”

“Sometimes your music can get lost if you don’t have the right people, but it’s a perfect match once you find the right ones.”

PDLR: When and how did you team up with Soul Step for your first release?

Marcus Machado: “Naturally, when it came time to make my records, I knew it would go on vinyl. When I put out new music, I want to be strategic and not have it become old in a week. I want to try to change the narrative and put out good music but put it out on vinyl.

Once I had my music recorded, before partnering with Soul Step, I wanted to find a good company that understands what I do and my overall vision. At Soul Step, with Melvin and everyone involved, it’s a perfect match. They cater to the artist and understand the vision. They know the way to put it out and make it unique. Melvin reached out to me, and I told him I already had two albums, but I wanted to get them on vinyl. We decided on Aquarius Purple, and I felt good about these projects. He introduced me to the whole world of Wax Mage (exclusive vinyl variants) and their psychedelic artwork, which is up my alley. Sometimes your music can get lost if you don’t have the right people, but it’s a perfect match once you find the right ones.

When Aquarius Purple came out, I worried people wouldn’t buy vinyl because of the pandemic. It actually worked as a domino effect because people were taking the time to sit down and listen to records. When we launched the vinyl, the Wax Mage sold out in about 50 seconds, which surprised me because it was my debut album and my first vinyl release.”

PDLR: I like the concept of releasing an album on vinyl first, like you recently did for Blue Diamonds. I think it’s interesting to forego listening to the digital album and instead purchase the record on vinyl like you would when you were younger. You’re going to get a better experience than on Spotify.

Marcus Machado: “If you’re a fan of a certain artist, getting their new record on vinyl is such a surprise. You have to listen to all the songs to find your favorites without skipping through. With streaming, it’s fast consuming and skipping through the songs. If I would release Blue Diamonds on digital tomorrow, I know most people will skip through without listening to it all the way through. I feel it’s better to listen to the whole thing, and then you can start dissecting the details and pick out your favorite songs. So, whenever I put out my music, it will always be the vinyl first. It’s the whole experience, seeing the cover, holding the album, etc. The more music I put out, the more intricate I want to get with the vinyl aspect.”

Marcus Machado Blue Diamonds
Marcus Machado Blue DiamondsBlue Ink Spot Vinyl by Soul Step Records

Marcus Machado on Prince Influence

PDLR: Today is Prince Day, 6/7/2023, so I wanted to ask you if you have a favorite moment, song, or memory of Prince, something that impacted you when you were younger.

Marcus Machado: “Yeah, of course! My major influences are Jimi, and then it’s Prince, then everybody else. Prince is by far a massive influence on everything that I do. I have two standout memories of Prince. As a kid, my mom had Purple Rain, Dirty Mind, and Sign “☮︎” the Times. My favorite Prince eras are Dirty Mind and Sign “☮︎” the Times. My mom would play that record like every day.

When I was younger, around 1992, I was maybe ten years old, and I got asked to play at his club Glam Slam. They wanted me to open up for Alexander O’Neal and said Prince would attend. I don’t know how my mom set this up, but there’s a contract somewhere for Glam Slam that says “Prince” and has me opening for Alexander O’Neal. I couldn’t believe it. It didn’t actually end up happening due to a schedule conflict, but I was so close.

The second memory was in 2014. Rolling Stone named me the next upcoming guitarist, the “Next Young Gun.” So in the interview, they asked me some of my favorite artists, and this was 2014; of course, Prince was #1 on the list. When the article came out, somehow, he got wind of it. One day in 2015, or the beginning of 2016, I got a notification from HIM on Twitter. The tweet said, “Meet Marcus,” and it had the link to my interview. I didn’t believe it then and thought Prince wasn’t on Twitter or social media. So I shrugged it off, thinking it was someone with a fake account. I took a screenshot and saved it.

Then in 2016, I felt like more of his people were coming around, and I thought maybe I’d get to meet him by the end of the year. I wanted to play him the song “Her” from Aquarius Purple because he inspired that song. Then, unfortunately, he passed, so I never had the chance to meet or see him in concert.

About two months after he passed, we got a random call to do a popup show in Minneapolis. It was me and Jamie Lidell, an incredible artist from the UK. During the show, I noticed someone in the audience who looked familiar; she had long hair on one side with it shaved on the other. I met her after and realized it was guitarist Donna Grantis from 3RDEYEGIRL, one of Prince’s last groups he played with. She set it up for me to go to Paisley Park to see what it looked like back then, the way Prince left it.”

Hot Events & News

PDLR: You recently played Jazz Fest in NOLA with Jon Batiste. What was that like?

Marcus Machado: “Jazz Fest was really special this year. It was the first time they had the festival since the pandemic. During the day, I rehearsed with Jon Batiste and then played at least two shows a night that week. It’s always fun being in NOLA and hearing all the great music.”

PDLR: Do you have any upcoming shows or festivals?

Marcus Machado: “Yeah! This summer is going to be busy with shows. I’m going to Europe in July, so I’m looking forward to that.”

PDLR: Anything else you are looking forward to in 2023?

Marcus Machado: “There are a lot of things coming soon that I’m excited about. One is a series called Black Pop. It’s a 4-part series that aired on E! June 19th & 20th. I had the honor of doing the music score for the series. Black Pop is about black culture, where they talk about everything from music, sports, film, and television. It’s executive produced by Stephen Curry.”

“The next album will be something else to contrast the first two. I try not to make the same type of music with each album. Making three different Aquarius Purple albums would be easy, but I want each album to stand for itself and evolve.”

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"Drunk on Me" J. Antonette

“Drunk on Me” by J. Antonette: Weekend Music for the Soul

Drunk on Me by J. Antonette

Songwriting is truly the art of telling your story through music. Artists and songwriters are the first to imagine the bones of a new song based on personal experiences. Those first elements are near and dear to an artist’s heart and message. When these details of songwriting resonate with a broader audience, they create a feeling of mutual understanding between the artist and the listener. Today, Nashville country artist J. Antonette shares her story and collaborative insight behind her emotionally raw hit single “Drunk on Me.”

// Introducing J. Antonette //

J. Antonette started her music career as a background singer for the well-known country-rock artist Melissa Etheridge. She then went on to back up Grammy Award Winning Artist Michael Bolton and open for a variety of country artists, including Jordan Davis and Tucker Beathard. Originally from NYC, Antonette has since relocated to pursue country music in Nashville. She currently releases music as well as collaborates with other artists as a songwriter.

We are excited to have the opportunity to speak with J. Antonette about the making of her recent single, “Drunk on Me,” which addresses the difficulty of a relationship that you know may not be good for you.

“He drives my heart like he stole it”

PoetryDansLaRue: I love the rawness of “Drunk on Me.” The clarity of the vocal and ballad-like style paints a clear picture. Can you tell us about the early stages of the song?

J. Antonette: “Thank you so much! While writing a different song with my friend Lyndee, she mentioned that she and another writer, Colleen Francis, had an idea that would be a great fit for me. Lyndee and I spoke about what I was going through in my personal life. When she sent me the work tape, I immediately knew I had to be a part of this.

At the time, I was with a person who displayed addictive tendencies. It felt like I was living the exact idea of the song. I loved it when he was drunk on me. The highs and lows. The thrills and the crash. I think I tend to get into these toxic relationships and cling to the good instead of all of the red flags. Many of us can relate to being love drunk at one point or another.” 

“The ladies were so wonderful to let me join in on the creation of it. I took some time sitting at a coffee shop with tears in my eyes. I wrote in some details from my relationship that I was in the process of leaving. This time allowed me to put my spin on it.” 

PDLR: I enjoy hearing how multiple perspectives combine to create a song that felt perfect for you at the time. How do you usually go about songwriting? Do you often work with other songwriters?

J. Antonette: “My process ranges from writing alone, in my apartment in the darkest hours of the night, to weekly scheduled co-writes. I have about four writing sessions a week with different writers whom I admire or respect. I never want to be the best writer in the room. When I work with others who push me and are extremely talented, it helps make me a better writer.”

“When it comes to how I write or what I write about, I usually pull from experiences that I’m going through at the time.  If I feel passionate about a topic, that may inspire me as well. I love collaborating with other artists. It forces you to work harder instead of settling for what you believe is “good enough.”

“Young, reckless, and free”

PDLR: I agree that working with others can only benefit you as an artist. Who else do you work with on your songs as far as instrumentation and production go?

J. Antonette: “For each of my songs thus far, I’ve worked with different producer friends! I’m blessed to be surrounded by incredible talent both in L.A., Nashville, and NYC. “Drunk On Me” was produced by Johnny Dibb with additional instrumentation by Tyler Tomlinson.”

PDLR: Since you moved to Nashville, what opportunities have shaped you as a musician?

J. Antonette: “I think when you move to Nashville, you have to step up your game. Not just as a singer but as a writer AND performer. You have to work harder than the person next to you. This town is home to the most talented musicians in the nation! I’ve had the opportunity to travel the world performing with musicians and write with new artists whom I admire. I’ve joined the community and performed at some amazing writers’ rounds in town. It’s been a beautiful experience! My very first gig in Nashville was the well-known showcase, “Whiskey Jam.”

PDLR: Do you have new songs coming out soon?

J. Antonette: “I have been writing my butt off! I do have plans to release new songs in 2020, but right now, I have not decided on which to release. I’m trying to push myself to write my best work and then pick from them!”

“I love when he’s drunk on me”

// For the Listener //

“Drunk on Me” is our take on a breakup song before you bid the final goodbye. The listener can feel the pull of the relationship where you know it’s not right, but you stay anyway. There is a bittersweet side to the song when the singer shares the story from her point of view, “He doesn’t look good on paper, I know his record shows, he’s a little rough around the edges, but it’s different when we are alone…”

We can picture this song being played in the car when you are questioning if something feels right or wrong. “Drunk on Me” by J. Antonette can be your next breakup song, comfort song, power song, or even love song. It is up to your interpretation of what the song means to you at a particular moment. The beauty of music begins with the songwriters’ and artists’ personal experiences but transfers wide and deep across endless barriers.

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