MY first interview of the day...
is with Lydia Evangeline as she tells me about her new single, Down, and its story; whether she is already looking ahead to next year and more material; the influence of her dad regarding music and which rising artist we need to get behind.
The songwriter chooses a few albums that mean a lot to her and whether there is anything to achieve by the end of the year; who she’d support in tour given the chance and how she relaxes away from music – she selects a great song to end the interview with.
Hi, Lydia. How are you? How has your week been?
Hey there! I’m great thank you! My week’s been good. I’ve just got back from Leeds where I was part of a Sofar Sounds gig.
For those new to your music; can you introduce yourself, please?
I’m Lydia Evangeline; twenty-four, based in Brighton. Started writing music at about thirteen/fourteen when I entered a very dreary poem into my school poetry competition and then decided to put it to some even drearier chords and write my first song...and the rest is history. Haha.
I’ve only recently started releasing music as a solo artist (I’ve put out five singles in 2018) and before that I was in bands. I also play for artist Jake Isaac as his keys/guitar/percussion/backing vocalist (which is SO fun) and has taken me to many countries on many tours, which I’m so grateful for.
I’m heavily inspired by women in music; I love 'em. At the moment, I’m drawing lots of inspiration from the likes of Jade Bird, Fenne Lily; Dodie, Maggie Rogers; Sigrid and MUNA - oh my gosh, the list is endless. Girls rock!
Down is your new single. What is the story behind the song?
I started the lyrics for Down about three years ago actually - it’s been on a long old journey. I’d finally pulled myself away from a relationship that looking back just wasn’t great, but I wasn’t strong enough in myself to stay away. I kept being sucked back in and that’s primarily what the songs about. I liken the feeling of loss of control over your willpower to that of drowning and feeling like you’re struggling to resurface from the relationship that’s suffocating you and take a deep breath.
Did you experience a lot of music as a child? Can you recall which artists were in your collection growing up?
I know this is the classic answer, but my dad is my musical hero. He brought all of us up listening to Billy Joel, The Police; Mott the Hoople, The Carpenters etc. He almost daily sends me song recommendations via Spotify and has his own playlist of over two-hundred songs (so tech-savvy!).
My mum is also from a family of Classical musicians, so that was very much present in our household, which I appreciate so much. I love that I can now just about identify pieces of Classical music when I hear them without being able to Google the lyrics. Haha.
Will there be more material next year?
Oh, heck yeah! Try and stop me!
What do you hope to achieve by the end of 2018?
To be honest, I feel like I’ve achieved what I set out to do this year. It’s been a year of development and discovering who I am as a solo artist and, five singles later, I finally think I’ve got there...things will sound and look a little different next year and I’m so excited to show everyone my new material! Also, just a practical aim this year was to have five music videos to go along with each single which we managed to achieve so I’m pleased with that!
Do you already have plans for 2019?
Yes! An E.P. coming earlier in the year (I’ve enjoyed doing singles but I’m craving putting out a proper body of work that people can get their teeth into). And a couple of little tour and support tour ideas that are in the pipeline. Watch this space.
Have you got a favourite memory from your time in music so far – the one that sticks in the mind?
Oh, gosh. I hope this doesn’t come across too braggy..but I mentioned earlier that I play for another artist, Jake Isaac, and last year we went on tour supporting Sir Elton John. Paha! Absolutely bonkers.
Which three albums mean the most to you would you say (and why)?
Love this question. Basically, any of the Paramore albums but, if I had to pick, I’d go with the original, All We Know Is Falling. Paramore were my absolute teenage goals and I don’t think I’d be doing music today if it weren’t for my mild (major) obsession with Hayley Williams growing up.
Shallow Bed by Dry the River is probably my favourite album of all time (BOLD statement).
Then, finally...Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band by The Beatles. Great album and reminds me of my dad.
As Christmas is coming up; if you had to ask for one present what would it be?
I feel like this is the moment when I’m meant to say world peace? But, aside from world peace, I’m genuinely not really into ‘stuff’. I like gift experiences, you know what I mean? Like, take me ice skating at Hyde Park’s Winter Wonderland and you’re golden.
If you could support any musician alive today, and choose your own rider, what would that entail?
I’d LOVE to support Mumford & Sons. The dream. And puppies for my rider. Not to eat, to play with. They’re so calming. Yes; a green room full of puppies please.
What advice would you give to new artists coming through?
Well. I’m a new artist myself so don’t have bucket loads of wisdom to impart. But, something I’m quite passionate about is people feeling they can be authentically themselves as an artist. Everyone on this earth is unique, so bringing your uniqueness into your music is so much more exciting than being a carbon copy of someone else.
PHOTO CREDIT: Hollie Fernando Photography
Are there any new artists you recommend we check out?
Fenne Lily. She’s a divine creature.
Do you get much time to chill away from music? How do you unwind?
I love a good Netflix binge, National Trusts; reading in coffee shops, hanging out with my family and walking along Brighton seafront listening to a good podcast.
Finally, and for being a good sport; you can choose a song and I’ll play it here (not any of your music - I will do that).
Love that. Pop on Just Us by Cat Burns. It’s my JAAAM at the moment. She’s only sixteen. Mind-blowing
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