Only 13 when she sat down at a piano, Zoey Lily had to have known she was destined to be creative in some aspect of life. Her father worked in music and her mother had taken on the world of Parisian fashion. Now she has an interest in both, but music has taken charge. Reworking former poems into songs, she released a single song this year entitled “Nothing.” One this year, but she assures us there’s more to come. Not a traditional album, but expect “loads” from the noir-pop songstress in 2018. With that, she’ll play her first show this spring in London. In between now and then, get to know Zoey Lily more as she talks about wearing many hats, the music and more.
Kendra: Were your parents always taking bets on which one of their creative paths you’d follow?
Zoey Lily: My mum has always been convinced that I’m an artistic person and that I’d end up doing something creative. It’s funny because neither my mum nor my dad would have recommended or promoted their profession and I don’t think either of them expected me to end up making music. My dad was the reason I started to play the guitar in the first place and although my dad used to say “music is a shit business,” they are both incredibly supportive and encouraging.
Kendra: While you went with music, fashion in some cases is an intricate part of a musician’s life. Do you agree with that?
Zoey Lily: I’m very much interested in fashion and I’d absolutely agree that fashion has become an important matter for many artists as it defines their brand and look up to a certain point. I used to sew a lot and still love the idea of creating my own clothes.
Kendra: Back to the music because you’re all in. You’re not only a performer and songwriter but also a producer. Are there any people behind the scenes that inspired you to wear that many hats?
Zoey Lily: I don’t think there’s anyone in particular. I like to have the creative control and I usually know exactly how I want my music to sound like. I think the production is such an important part as it defines the artist as much as the actual songwriting or the voice does. For me, the ‘creation of something’ is what I’m really interested in and what keeps inspiring me. I always had the idea in my head of being an artist and not a singer.
Kendra: You’ve noted that “Nothing” came from a poem you penned. How long were you writing poetry before you started transforming them into lyrics?
Zoey Lily: I started writing little poems and collect phrases when I was a child. When I wrote my first songs I wouldn’t use them as lyrics though. Later when I started to think more deeply about the meaning of songs and lyrics it was easy to get inspired by my poems. I quite liked the idea of not having a clear storyline and not always saying exactly what I mean.
Kendra: On top of all your other skills, you’re a dancer. With that, if you had to make a mixtape of your favorite tracks to move to – what five would have to be on it?