I met up with Lucy Rose before her gig at Newcastle’s Riverside; fitted in between droves of other interviewers and the filming for a new music video. Even though I didn’t have much time with her, the ‘journey’ she was on was the standout theme of the interview.
Almost immediately after asking if her fears had been confirmed and fans had been deterred by her new album, she launched into a very impassioned answer about how she hoped her fans respected her and the journey that she was on as a person and an artist. Of course you can’t please everyone, and she alluded to this several times, but it seemed clear she’s trying her best.
— Riverside Newcastle (@RiversideNewc) November 13, 2015
One way she’s trying to grow her audience is by doing everything herself. Her new album Work It Out was all written by her without the help of co-writers. I asked her if she believes that’s important for artists.
“I’m not necessarily saying this is what’s going to make the best record, but I need to discover myself. Even though you can make great songs, they’re not me. In that way I’m being quite selfish because I need to find what makes me a better artist.”
This was another indication of the importance of doing it herself. Upon probing a little more it seemed as if she almost had a point to prove, perhaps to herself more than any of her fans.
“I’m not really after trying to make a great song, if that makes sense. Especially with other people’s formats and ways of doing it. I very selfishly want to see if I’m capable of doing it on my own with time.”
It’s not particularly clear if she’s managed that with her second album, a follow up to debut Like I Used To. The album has been received reasonably well, but it has possibly not had its desired effect. It almost appeared that she knew that. When talking about the music industry in general she wasn’t particularly happy about the way it manages artists.
“You get two chances and then you’re written off. Elton John said he did something like five big tours before releasing anything amazing, and that development time is very important. There seems to be no patience to wait for anything, and they’re not willing to go on the journey.
They almost say if you don’t sell enough records, if you’re not successful enough then we won’t do another record with you. And I think that’s pressure that everyone is under. Which is why I’m so thankful that people support me and buy my tickets. This is the only way I’ll be able to move onto a third record and continue this journey. I don’t know if people know how important that is.”
It’s clear that she relies on this support and embraces it, unlike the more industrial side of the industry.
“Heavy touring is important because it’s the only thing that’s really in my control. I can want my songs to be played on the radio, I can want people to write about me and I can want them to do things that’ll expose me, but I won’t rely on it. That’s part of the reason why we did a month or so of touring this time.
Again it appears that Rose is particularly dependent upon herself. She knows what she wants and it appears that she’s on her journey to getting it. With that being said, look out for album number three.
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