INTERVIEW: Lemon Lord
Our very own Ella interviews Los Angeles artist Lemon Lord about her latest release.
When I listened to your latest release ‘Be Blonde’ the first word that comes to mind is ‘iconic’. Are you very inspired by pop culture icons?
Yes, especially women. They don’t even need to be from real life. For example I get a lot of inspiration from Princess Leia (Star Wars) and Samantha Jones (Sex and the City). I want women to have energy and guts again, and not resolve themselves to just exist in a man’s world. It’s our world too – and I want to celebrate that in my music.
What would your advice be for someone who wants to embrace their inner icon but doesn’t feel confident enough in themselves?
Nobody feels confident 100% of the time. The celebrities you adore don’t look like that from every angle and that’s life! They can still be iconic and courageous and powerful. It’s time to realize that we are human beings and that our avatars online are not the whole story, but the rest of it (the real life part) does not make us weak. It makes us strong and infinite. Always remember that the way you look at your best friend or someone you love very much is the way that others look at you. They’re not looking at your flaws. They think you’re perfect. Be brave and never be scared. Also, go to therapy (or find a friend who will really listen). Everyone desperately needs it. xo
Your lyrics are very affirmative and empowering, is bringing confidence and power to your audience something that you aim to do in your music?
Yes. This album was born from a life or death moment in which I felt compelled to be the hero that I needed. I feel that a lot of great music is made in this way, by creating what you yourself want to hear and want to be around. There’s a huge lack of this kind of music in the charts now, and I know that people miss it because my fans (the Illemonati) and friends and other people tell me every day. They want to dance and have fun and feel strong, so I am coming to the rescue! <3
I love that you embrace your femininity, your lips that “shine like plasma”, and show how that doesn’t make you any less intelligent or mean that you should be undermined! Is this a message that’s important to you?
Absolutely. Before I was Lemon Lord I played violin under my given name and it took me onto television, around the world, and got me on stage with many celebrities. That was fun, and I’ll play violin under my given name forever – but it’s important to me that I don’t live only as one version of myself. That’s why I dyed my hair blonde, to become another person, and to not be afraid to live in multiple dimensions. I hate it when people try (unsuccessfully) to limit women to one role. They say that if you’re a mom, you can’t be a boss, or if you’re a model you can’t be a lawyer. That’s crap and my songs “Destiny” and “Paint My Face” are alllllll about that. ;)
Are you heavily involved in the production of your songs? There is such a clear vision and artistic strength behind your work!
Thank you. Yes I am. I wrote all the songs, melodies, lyrics and arrangements, and I also co-produced the album with Johannes Burger. A number of other engineers were involved at different points as well. I was at every recording session and listened to every mix. I would say I’m more involved than most pop music artists are, and that could be for a lot of reasons but since I have a strong musical background, I really understand and know my music, the chords, the sounds and so forth, so I care for it very closely and know what the hell I want.
If you could collaborate with any creative (from musicians to photographers to stylists) who would it be?
Probably Donatella Versace. I’ve looked up to her for years and just think she is such a cool, proud, calm, gorgeous, successful woman. She knows how to express herself, she knows how to make things happen, she loves her work, she has platinum hair… she just gets it. I want to work with a lot of women in my life, as many as possible.
What would you like for your legacy to be?
I want people to remember Lemon Lord as someone who had iconic music, cared for others and really lifted them up.
How would you describe your local music scene in LA?
It’s probably changed quite a bit since the pandemic and it hasn’t opened fully yet, although maybe in July or so it will, so I can’t say what it’s like now because I haven’t been to a show in over a year. But in general, I would say that LA has a vibrant, very alive nightlife. There is something for everyone and you can always find incredible shows, big and small, happening anywhere. You have access to everything and you will run into people you never thought you’d meet, which is always fun. I imagine some of the venues have closed down forever due to the pandemic, and that’s awfully sad, but it will hopefully make room and create demand for new venues to come up. :)
What would be your dream gig?
Performing at a sold-out Staples Center for three or four nights in a row and just having fun, making people laugh and cry with me.
I see on your Instagram page that you have a collection of quotes written by you - do you have an inspiring quote to finish off our interview today?
Yes, I add to those all the time. Those are kind of like mantras about art and beauty and life and creativity and I usually write those notes to myself but if I think they can help others or have a wider meaning, then I’ll post them because I want others to feel strong too. This is a good one: Be any me that makes you free! xo LL