20 Questions With Lights
We chatted about her bold new blonde hair, touring, and her new acoustic EP. Check it out:
You released your first acoustic EP, ‘Lights.Acoustic,’ back in 2010, an acoustic version of your debut album ‘The Listening.’ When and how did you decide to create ‘Siberia Acoustic?’
Stripping a song down to its bare bones shows the song in an entirely different light, it’s just really cool to be able to show that side of my material to everyone. It’s very intimate and close, the lyrics and melodies take on a whole new meaning and resonance with the listener. I initially intended to release Siberia Acoustic along side Siberia full version, but it never came together in time, which I’m thankful for because the extra time with the songs made them perfectly brewed.
Do you already think you’ll release an acoustic EP for each album you release?
I can’t really speak for my future self yet, but I do know that I love showing this side of my music to people, it’ll always be special.
Do you find that recording acoustic version of your album songs gives you a chance to breathe new life into them?
Absolutely! You’re reinventing everything, the way it’s sung, the arrangements, sometimes even adding and taking away entire parts. It’s totally indulgent for me as an artist. It’s like, “how different can we make this?” ‘
What was it like collaborating with Owl City on the acoustic version of “Cactus In The Valley?”
It was great, I emailed him asking if he’d want to be involved and he was into it so I sent him the track I could picture his voice on the most. He sent me a vocal back within a few weeks that he’d just done on his own. All of the collaborations on this album were just personal emails being exchanged. It was really special to see what can come out of just a few messages.
Is there a particular acoustic rendition on your EP that is your favorite?
I really like the way Suspension came out, it is really natural and in the pocket when I play it, and so different from the original.
Your first acoustic tour was a pretty swanky affair, held in small, intimate venues. What will your upcoming second acoustic tour be like?
The rooms are a little bigger on this run and I am bringing along a cellist, Kevin Fox. He was the one who played on the recordings as well, really naturally talented musician. I’m really looking forward to that rapport on stage.
Do you find that it’s more nerve-wracking performing solo (acoustic) as opposed to with your band and full atmospherics to back you up?
I really enjoy the freedom of playing acoustically, you can be spontaneous and do anything you want, you can perform in the moment. Alternately though, you have no one else to rely on, you have to captivate hundreds of people with just an acoustic guitar and a voice, so it really challenges you to be at your best and be quick and on point.
You recently changed your hair color from its signature dark-brown/black to white blonde! What brought about the change and how does it feeling being blonde again?
I guess I was just ready for change, you can’t stay the same forever and I hope I always can let myself evolve and move in and out of eras. I like being blonde, mostly because it’s different every time I look in the mirror, and I feel like Daenerys Targaryen.
How was it shooting with a live owl in the Matt Barnes shoot you did recently? Did you feel like a fantasy character?
That was a lot of fun, also a whole other element to concentrate on. I had to make sure the owl looked good and try to look good myself. If I wanted her to spread her wings I had to drop her a little bit then pick my arm back up while maintaining a straight face. She also got really heavy after a while!
What are you personally listening to on your iPod these days?
Dying to Say this to You by the Sounds, Galactic Melt by Com Truise, Horses by Patti Smith.
Three things I always bring with me on tour are:
Apogee Duet recording interface, laptop, my XBox hard drive.
Three video games I can’t live without are:
Currently, Skyrim, Dead Island Plants vs. Zombies!
Three of my all-time heroes are: Patti Smith, Bjork, Joni Mitchell.
My tour wardrobe consists of:
Black pants, various shirts, a leather jacket, lots of socks and boots.
My favorite TV shows/films right now are:
Game of Thrones.
Home Cooking or Take Out?:
I can’t cook so my only option is take out…
Tattoos or Piercings?:
Fantasy or Science Fiction?:
Instagram or Vine?:
On The Road or At Home?:
On the road I miss home and at home I miss the road… so both.
Don’t forget to grab Lights’ new EP, ‘Siberia Acoustic,’ out today! Thanks, Lights! 🙂
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