LYON is releasing her debut full-length album this year and we got to chat with her about the record and why she’s out in California right now. Read the full interview here.
The twenty-something Lauren Lyon (pronounced ‘lion’) from Port Perry, Ontario has been producing some chart-topping indietronic pop music over the last few years and is now hard at work at her first full-length album. You may know her from her frequent collaborations with Wolf Saga or by her solo work that includes her Indian Summer EP as well as several videos, like her most recent, ‘Catch Me If I Fall’.
While in California to play some shows and work on her new album, Lauren took a few minutes to chat with me about her trip out West, her musical upbringing, and why she loves Chantal Kreviazuk. Read it below and check out her ‘Catch Me If I Fall’ video down below.
What are you doing out in California right now?
I’m in Studio City, North Hollywood, but my band flew out with me three weeks ago and we got to travel around a little bit. We played in San Diego. We played University of California Riverside and also a big showcase at the Hotel Café right here in LA, doing some sight-seeing in between. It’s like a vacation but better because we’re actually doing what we love. I can’t get enough. I fly back tomorrow morning.
Before you became Lyon, what was your musical background like?
I grew up playing classical music. I actually started with violin when I was 3-and-a-half and then I started learning piano and played in orchestras and stuff like that until I was in my teens. I started writing my own music, discovering pop music a little bit more and I switched over to what I’m doing now when I was about 18.
Your website bio describes your music as “…electronic music with a human soul made by the girl next door with a secret.” What is that secret, Lauren?
*laughs* It wouldn’t be a secret if I told you. I think I find mystery a little bit interesting so I’d rather not give it all away.
I read that you’re working on releasing a full-length album pretty soon. Can you tell us a bit about it and when we can expect it to be released?
I don’t have an exact date yet but I’ve had a couple of writing trips out here in LA and they’ve been so inspiring. I’ve been building my collection of songs and narrowing it down to what’s going to be on the full-length, but I feel like I’m using the Indian Summer EP as a, sort of, departure. Cut me Loose and Catch Me If I Fall will probably be on the full length as well. I’m just broadening my sound and discovering it’s new, I guess you could say, tricks *laughs*- whatever you want to say- just different aspects of myself. I’ve been able to feel a bit freer and soak in – from the people I’m working with now- other elements I didn’t know I had in me. It’s been creative and inspiring and I think people will be surprised that it’s just a little broader. I’ve been having more fun, I think.
You and Johnny Saga of Wolf Saga have frequently collaborated together and produced some great music. How did you meet and what is the process like when you’re writing or recording a track?
Funnily enough we haven’t actually really spent much time together, it’s been very much just sending files online. We found each other on Soundcloud and I think he reached out. I met him initially when we did our first cover of Lorde’s ‘Team’. We kind of hit it off and we have a nice contrast together with Michael Coulson – he does amazing production and it’s just a lot of fun and to be honest it’s come together really quickly, he’s great at what he does. We got to play together recently at Canadian Music Week – we had the same showcase at The Drake so he invited me up and we did You Only Live Once together which was really cool.
If you could collaborate on a song with anyone right now, who would it be?
Hmmm good question. Let’s go with Cindy Lauper.
What are some of your hobbies and interests outside of music?
I enjoy different things. I think my favourite escape is my cottage up north. I just enjoy kind of getting away and losing myself on walks and things like that. But just lately it’s been exploring LA. It’s my second time here and I’m finding so many new places, neighbour hoods and making friends. It’s just been incredible.
Any upcoming shows we should know about?
This is kind of cool; I’m opening for Chantal Kreviazuk at Niagara on the Lake and it’s cool because she was one of the first people to inspire me. I was playing classical music and I didn’t have an awareness of pop music when I was younger, but her cover of ‘Leaving on a Jetplane came out and it really caught my ear. I was so drawn to her voice and the pure emotion from it. In classical music everything has to be “perfect” all the time and what grabbed me about her voice is just how real it was. She can use a slight crack in her voice, or anything, and it’s just to get an emotion across and I think that’s one of the things that drew me to singing and just pop music in general. It’s kind of cool that I get to meet her and open for her for the first time. She kind of ties back into my story; it takes me back to my grade 6 talent show where I played that song.