SXSW Preview – Lucy Rose

by Alex Teitz
Lucy Rose
            Lucy Rose went through some life changing experiences to make her 3rd studio album Something’s Changing. She changed labels. She toured Latin America with the help of her fans. She went into the studio in a different way. The result is an album that reveals the artist’s true heart. Lucy Rose is on tour with Paul Weller in the US this month. For info visit
FEMMUSIC:  It sounds like you went through some profound changes before recording Something’s Changing. How did that effect your own goals for recording the album?
LR: I think my whole perspective for music and making records changed after really getting to know my fans. I understood what they had taken from my music and the importance of songs and making music. During that trip I reconnected to my guitar and writing songs began to feel natural again. I guess you can put a lot of pressure on yourself when you’re making something and worry that no-one will like it but I was just thinking about those fans I had met and was writing the record for them so I wasn’t worried and enjoyed the whole experience.
FEMMUSIC: What was the biggest challenge making Something’s Changing?
LR: It really doesn’t feel like a challenging project, in many ways it was the easiest record I’ve made yet. I’m sure with more experience that helped but I had a very clear vision in my head about what I wanted to make, I had all the songs written and had been playing them for half a year or so so I felt confident in playing and singing them. The only challenge I can think of is that I was self funding this record and managing myself, so it was a lot to take on but it all worked out in the end.
FEMMUSIC: Tell me about working with Tim Bidwell. What did he bring to the project and what did he bring out of you?
LR: A lot of laughing. Tim is one of the funniest people I know. Sometimes when you’re recording, things can feel quite serious. You’re in a studio, the clock is ticking and you know it’s costing money so there rarely feels like there’s time to mess around, be silly or just have another cup of tea and relax. And weirdly this record was so quick to make. In making the environment so relaxed, we did less takes and caught real performances. I think he brought out the best in me, sometimes I can be quite serious so it was nice that fun Lucy was out making this record.
FEMMUSIC:  It sounds like the production time of Something’s Changing was both really quick (17 days) and relaxing at the same time (I read you were attending some shows as an audience member then). How did that differ from producing your other albums? Were there any benefits or downsides you weren’t expecting with it?
LR: We clocked off most evenings around 7pm, so it meant I had the evenings to myself. I live in London, so don’t know that many people in Brighton which is were Tim lives, so I spent most evenings on my own going to see gigs. I not great on my own but I love it at the same time and it gave me lots of time to think about the record and the songs. Honestly I really enjoyed making this record, like I did the other records, they were all such different experiences, the first at my parents house in their living room, the second in a proper studio in London and this one in Tim’s house in Brighton. I did find it hard being away from home so much but it meant I was determined to work hard and get the record finished quickly. And the biggest benefit from making the record is the new friends I’ve made, Tim and Laura (Tim’s wife) are now great friends of mine and the musicians that Tim introduced me to are now by band who I love.
FEMMUSIC:  Tell me about Arts & Crafts Records. How did you come to sign with them? Did you have any reservations about signing to another label after leaving Columbia?
LR: I’ve always loved Arts & Crafts and it’s been a dream of mine to be able to release my music with them, I still can’t really believe it’s happened. After being set free from Columbia Records, I was a little nervous about my next step and I knew I would never do a regular major deal again, so I’m licensing my music, which gives me a lot more control and freedom to make the music that I want to make and put it out in the right way. I more involved in every step now so it feels much more authentic.
Lucy Rose
FEMMUSIC:  Can you describe your songwriting technique? How has it changed over time?
LR: It’s like waiting for a bus, you can be waiting for ages or two buses come at once. Last night I sat down at the piano and somehow wrote something and then picked up my guitar and wrote something else. But this last month I’ve written nothing because the moment wasn’t quite right and the feeling wasn’t there. When that feeling of inspiration comes I make sure I make the most of it and if it’s not there I try not to worry.
FEMMUSIC:  As a woman in the music industry have you been discriminated against?
LR: There’s been the odd moment here and there where I’ve thought ‘if I was a man would you have said that to me? Or asked me that? Or treated me that way?’ Some people treat men and women so differently and don’t even realize it. I’ve had the odd comment on a radio show, when I was talking about living with my fans where the male presenter has said ‘oh you can come stay in my house’ and there’s a joke that’s slightly inappropriate that follows this and I feel like all my power has been taken. If I laugh along then how can I be taken seriously as a musician and if I say something I’m an uptight bitch who can’t take a joke. It’s really hard sometimes and I pick my battles but it’s never easy.
FEMMUSIC: Whom would you most like to collaborate with or tour with and why?
LR: Neil Young, 100%. Because he’s my hero and I’d like to think his fans may like my music.
FEMMUSIC: What one thing would you like to change about the music industry?
LR: Tough questions but if I could change one thing I’d love the industry to not be profit driven.
March 1st, 2018