We had the pleasure of interviewing renforshort over Zoom video.
renforshort releases her anxiously awaited debut album, dear amelia, today via Interscope Records. With dear amelia renforshort joins forces with her longtime collaborator Jeff Hazin...
We had the pleasure of interviewing renforshort over Zoom video.
renforshort releases her anxiously awaited debut album, dear amelia, today via Interscope Records. With dear amelia renforshort joins forces with her longtime collaborator Jeff Hazin as well as producers/co-writers like David Pramik, Alexander 23, Andy Seltzer, John Ryan, Tia Scola, Nick Long and Y2K, and narrates an up-close and thrillingly honest journey through the darkest parts of her psyche. A near-lifelong musician who plays guitar, piano, and drums and started touring before she’d graduated high school, the Toronto-bred artist builds an elaborate sonic world around her detailed exploration of mental health, ultimately bringing even the most painful revelations to strangely radiant life. Tackling raw accounts of depression and disassociation, anxiety and self-erasure renforshort crystallized the concept for her full-length debut after creating its spellbinding final track, a vocoder-enhanced epic called “amelia.” dear amelia features the 20-year-old alt-pop artist’s recent releases “moshpit,” “made for you,” “we’ll make this ok” featuring Travis Barker, “I miss myself” and most recently “Julian, king of Manhattan” - an ode to Julian Casablancas, the lead singer of the iconic New York City based band, The Strokes. She also got to work wither all-time favorite artist Jake Bugg on “let you down.”
renforshort will headline a North American tour this fall. Kicking off in her hometown of Toronto, ON the tour will make stops at major markets including New York and Los Angeles. Joey Valance and Brae will support on all dates. renforshort will also perform at the already announced Riot Fest in Chicago and Firefly Festival in Dover, DE. See below for a complete list of tour dates. Tickets for renforshort’s North American headline tour are on sale now at www.renforshort.com/tour
Casting an alternative haze over pop, renforshort conjures emotionally charged anthems punctuated by her intimate delivery and unfiltered lyricism. Born and raised in Toronto, she initially gravitated towards influences as diverse as Nirvana and Amy Winehouse, learning how to sing and write songs. During high school, the 20-year-old artist quietly honed her craft with countless performances in local bars in between dropping original tunes online. Her 2020 debut EP, teenage angst, lived up to its title as it bottled coming-of-age confusion and catharsis into chantable anthems with no shortage of punk spirit. The single “fuck, i luv my friends” reacted with over 11 million Spotify streams, paving the way for her off saint dominique EP in 2021. Along the way, iconic Linkin Park co-founder and co-vocalist Mike Shinoda jumped at the chance to collaborate, while YUNGBLUD, Avril Lavigne, MGK and others invited her to share the stage with them. She ignited 2022 with the single “moshpit” as it arrived to widespread acclaim from Billboard, Teen Vogue, OnesToWatch, NME, and more as EUPHORIA. proclaimed, “the songstress is reinventing traditional pop music as we know it.”
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What is going on!? It is Adam. Welcome back to bringing it backwards. A podcast where both legendary and rising artists tell their own personal stories of how they achieved stardom. On this episode, we had the opportunity to hang out with Wren. For short over zoom video, Ren was born and raised in Toronto, Canada, and she talks about how she got into music. Started playing piano at two years old, played piano, all pretty much her entire life. At 15, she started playing guitar, wrote her first song at 13. She even speaks Mandarin, which is incredible and won a contest by performing a very famous folk song in Mandarin. 2 (2m 7s): She talked about putting out the very first song. She had written at 13 and actually getting made fun of for it. She was made fun of, she talked about for releasing music all through high school. When in 12th grade, she ends up getting signed to Interscope records. So it's interesting. People would still be, you know, mean to her. Obviously she's got an amazing talent, amazing songwriter, but kids, kids are mean, she talked about the success of her first song waves, how that attracted the attention of Interscope records, signing that deal while in high school, putting out her first EAP on March 13, 20, 20, the day, the world shut down how that affected her and her her drive to write songs. 2 (2m 51s): She told us about the next record she put out and we talk a lot about her new album, her debut album, which is called dear Amelia, Travis Barker's on the record, Jake bugs on the record. She was a really cool story about how she was able to get Jake bug on the album and all about the headlining tour she has coming up as well. You can watch her interview with Ren for short on our Facebook page and YouTube channel at bringing it backwards. It would be awesome if you subscribe to our channel like us on Facebook and follow us on Instagram, Twitter, and Tik TOK at bringing back pod. And if you are listening to this on Spotify, apple music, Google podcasts, it would be awesome if you follow Sarah as well and hook us up with a five star review, 4 (3m 36s): We'd appreciate your support. If you follow and subscribe to our podcasts, wherever you listen to podcasts, 2 (3m 42s): We're bringing it backwards with Ren for short, I ran. Thank you for doing this. 5 (3m 48s): Thank you for having me. I'm very excited. 2 (3m 50s): Very cool. I'm Adam. 5 (3m 52s): Sorry. 2 (3m 54s): Oh, no, it sounds 5 (3m 56s): Terrible. 2 (3m 57s): No, it sounds all right. I mean, do, why do you have AirPods or anything like that? 5 (4m 1s): I don't, that's a problem. We have to take it outside because we're at a venue and it's so loud in the venue. So 2 (4m 7s): No, no, no. This sounds good. No, you don't have to be. You don't have to apologize at all. Okay. 5 (4m 14s): Perfect. 2 (4m 15s): Cool. Awesome. Are you you're on tour, correct? 5 (4m 17s): Yes. 2 (4m 18s): Amazing. I saw that you announced your headlining toward, I think it was yesterday. Didn't you? 5 (4m 24s): Yeah. Yesterday. Yeah. Very exciting. 2 (4m 28s): Yeah, you're playing. I recently moved to Nashville. I'm from San Diego and you're playing. I think you're playing the end on like the day before my birthday. So I think I ran out the guns. 5 (4m 38s): I'm everyone in Nashville. It's birthday or two. Okay. One other person was like, it's my birthday on the Nashville show and Nashville. And I'm like, what's up with the national birthdays being 2 (4m 52s): On September 20 minus the 23rd. But I know you play the 22nd. 5 (4m 57s): Pretty crazy. 2 (4m 58s): Yes. That's amazing. Well, whoever that person is should be there as well. We should just have a big birthday celebration. Amazing. I mean, well, again, my name's Adam and this is about you and your journey and music. And I want to talk to you about the album. I had a chance to hear it. It is amazing. Actually, the single you just released is my favorite song on the album. Yeah. It's a really, really cool record. And you have Jake bug on it, who I love huge fan of him and obviously Travis Barker, which is killer. So yeah. Great, great album. Yes. So actually first off, where were you born and raised? I say Toronto. 5 (5m 38s): Toronto. 2 (5m 39s): Okay. What was it like growing up in Toronto? Are you in the actual city of Toronto? 5 (5m 43s): Yes, I was from Toronto proper. I love Toronto. My favorite places in the world. A lot of people don't are feeling a lot of people don't love their hometowns. I mean, like I was born in a city 2 (6m 2s): And you got to live in a cool spot. Right? I mean, I grew up in San Diego and I love San Diego. If you grew up, maybe in the middle of nowhere, you would be like, I need to get the hell out of here. But yeah. 5 (6m 11s): Yes. It depends where you were born, but I love Toronto. I mean, I try and go back as often as possible for like, you know, inspiration. I find it very inspiring 2 (6m 25s): Music scene there. 5 (6m 27s): Yes. Massive music scene. It's very like pro the arts. 2 (6m 34s): Right. Canada's really pro the arts. So I especially, I mean, when it comes to grants and cool things they do for, for musicians and artists and, and funding projects like between, I think New Zealand is the only other spot I've ever heard of people doing those. I mean the government actually funding something cool. Like that. 5 (6m 54s): Pretty awesome. 2 (6m 56s): Yeah. 5 (6m 56s): It's very awesome. 2 (6m 58s): It's very rare. Well, do you come from a musical household though? 5 (7m 4s): I, yeah, I do. I mean, my parents weren't necessarily like musicians, but they just loved music so much. Like my mom was in like a bunch of fan clubs in high school, like Santana fan club, Duran Duran fan club. My dad was just like, 2 (7m 18s): Like a mail and fan club, like the ones. Sorry, tell me what about this fan club? 5 (7m 24s): I don't know the details, but I'm pretty sure it was like at her high school, she just like, oh yeah, 2 (7m 31s): Exactly. Yeah. 5 (7m 33s): Oh, she's very like just loves music. Her brothers all played music. She would play like, learn from her brothers. And my dad just like collected a lot of finals and like has like this massive collection, which is awesome. So yeah, they just put us in music when we were really young and we're like, go for it. 2 (7m 57s): You're into it. Right. So how old were you when you started playing or what, and what was the first instrument? 5 (8m 3s): I was two years old and I started playing piano. 2 (8m 7s): Oh my gosh. How did they put a T? I have a six-year-old son and I have no concept of, I mean, I know what he was at two and there's no way I don't think he can get, 5 (8m 18s): I think it was like a lot of it was more so just like, what are you going to do with a two year old? Like, it's kinda just like, 2 (8m 25s): It's like smashing the keys, 5 (8m 28s): Like this doggy house. This is the dog house like that. 2 (8m 33s): Oh, like for the black key? Yeah. Interesting. Okay. 5 (8m 37s): Yeah. So like these are the two. Yeah. It's just like, you get like a piano teacher. Like we had a piano teacher that was also like a nursery teacher or something. So she like taught us. And then, I mean, I took me on for a really long time. 2 (8m 52s): So you kept, did you keep learning from that same teacher or did you, 5 (8m 56s): Which teachers later on too, like this guy that just teaches like older people when I was probably around like eight and we were motivated by like chocolate bars. Like he put a chocolate bar at the end of the piano and he'd like, move it over as we like learned anything. 2 (9m 14s): Oh. So eventually you'd get to the chocolate bar, maybe within the lesson. 5 (9m 20s): Exactly. 2 (9m 22s): Did you learn classic Greek, classically trained or did you have a music teacher that you could say? I want to learn how to play this song and then he would show it to you. 5 (9m 32s): That was what it was. Yeah. 2 (9m 34s): I think that's 5 (9m 35s): Trained, but I wasn't. 2 (9m 38s): But really like, I mean, how fun is that if you were cause a lot of people I've interviewed you when you're classically trained, it almost becomes like a chore. You're like, Ugh, I don't want to go like practice. I was like, if you can go home and play something that, you know, and, and enjoy, I'm sure that gets you continuing to play. 5 (9m 57s): That's fair. That's totally valid. Yeah. I mean, there's sometimes I'm like the other day, like sat for like two hours with sky, like learn Claire Clair de Lune, because I was like, I want to learn this. And I had no idea. I was just like, this, this one, this one, this one, this one. Cause I don't know any like real, like how to play classical music. Sure. 2 (10m 21s): Can you read music? 5 (10m 24s): Tiny, teeny, tiny bit. But that's something I learned more recently. I never really like learned musical theory. My guitar teacher Congress brought it to me, but like relative to a guitar. So it's that, I don't know. 2 (10m 38s): Probably not something you really need to use, obviously. Especially as a songwriter. 5 (10m 42s): Listen. Yeah. I listened to like a Smartlist podcast with Dave Grohl and he was like, I don't know, theory at all. And I was like, Hey, that makes me feel so much better. 2 (10m 48s): Yeah. I love that show. I listen, I've actually heard that one too. Will Arnett is such a, he's so quick with it. I listened to that guy and I'm like, oh man, this guy is a legend. And so as Jason Bateman, I mean like just the, the, the random, just like one-liners, he'll insert, like so funny. Just be like, keep it clean. That is really funny. Okay. Yeah. I know a lot of massive musicians that you would assume have like this crazy background and you know, classical or no, all this theory. I have no concept. There's just like, no, I just know how to write amazing songs, but so you start playing piano too. 2 (11m 30s): And then when do you play guitar? When does that, when do you learn that? 5 (11m 34s): I started a guitar when I was a late and I want to say 15. 16. 2 (11m 40s): Okay. Yeah. But you had been playing piano all the way up, up to that point 5 (11m 44s): Basically. Yeah. 2 (11m 46s): Was it fairly easy to learn? Just kind of knowing how stuff's supposed to sound 5 (11m 50s): Honestly. Yeah. I didn't think it was that difficult. I mean, as a beginner, 2 (11m 57s): Right. 5 (11m 57s): Way more difficult. But as a beginner, I think it was like as difficult as I thought it would be. I think I also liked like rhythm insurance. It makes more sense to my brain, like bass guitar, drums. Like, it just makes sense to me more than piano does in a way. I don't know if that makes. Yeah. 2 (12m 26s): Okay. Well what about writing music? I did see that you wrote a song at very early age, right? Like 13 or something? 5 (12m 32s): Yeah. I started running music really young. My mom was a writer, so I always wanted to write, I would write like little, she wasn't like a songwriter. She was like a book writer 2 (12m 43s): Sounded like she really is that what she did professionally? 5 (12m 46s): Well, she did it more so for fun. She was in journalism for a long time professionally, but she still writes. She just never finished. Yeah. No, she's great. She's an amazing writer. And I was like, I want to do that. So I would write little books and like show them to her or whatever. So I was like writing from a young age. 2 (13m 8s): Well, she like helped edit it with you or like, 5 (13m 12s): Yeah, very fun. But she knows her, right? Like a lot of poetry, which is like similar to songwriting. It's not writing, it's just poetry in a way. Yeah. I kind of get okay. 2 (13m 24s): You were writing and then what you, cause obviously you knew piano. You're like, okay, I'm going to throw these chords together and kind of attempt to come up with some sort of melody. Is that how it all really started for you? 5 (13m 35s): Exactly. Yeah. I just, like, I consumed a lot of media, very young and I like still, still do. And that was really inspiring for me. Especially like the first song I wrote. I had no like real life experiences of 13, you know, like, or like whatever. So basically everything came from like media and whatever. 2 (13m 59s): Oh. So did you write it about things you saw? Like on TV or on the computer. 5 (14m 3s): Okay. 2 (14m 4s): And did you, did you perform it to anyone or show it to anyone? 5 (14m 8s): Yeah, I recorded it. I put it on YouTube, put it on SoundCloud and I took it down because I got made fun of relentlessly and 2 (14m 17s): I did you really? 5 (14m 19s): Oh my God. Yeah. 2 (14m 20s): Like at school. 5 (14m 21s): Oh yeah. 2 (14m 23s): Oh, wow. How did you continue? Was that, I mean, having that happen to you on the first song and the first thing you put up, like how did you have the, you know, kind of courage to continue to do it? You just, I mean, 5 (14m 34s): I mean, I stopped caring like, and at that age, like that's like, what is that? Eighth grade? Seventh grade. 2 (14m 41s): Oh, my kids are mean anyway. Right. 5 (14m 45s): So mean, but they're always mean through high school, they were mean too. Like they can stop. And I was like, okay, like 2 (14m 54s): You showed them. Right. 5 (14m 56s): Sorry. Yeah, exactly. Yeah. Yeah. Accidentally just hit it. I feel so bad. It's still alive though, but so scary. Sorry. Yeah. But yeah, I got pretty made, I got made fun of a lot in high school and middle school because of it. But, 2 (15m 16s): But you didn't, you just kept going and care. Like, were you just writing songs, putting them up? And then if people trash it you're like, whatever. I don't really care what you think. 5 (15m 24s): Yeah. I didn't care. And now all these people are like, oh my God, I'm so proud of you. I was like, 2 (15m 31s): That's awesome. I w that was going to ask you that are people coming out of the woodwork? Like I can re you know, Hey, remember me from high school. And you're like, yeah, you're the Dick that was making fun of me. 5 (15m 44s): That's like, I was horrible, but I just, like, I just distanced myself from everyone through high school. I'd go home everyday for lunch. And like, I liked it like that. I mean, I'm definitely more of a person that likes to be by myself. And I think that, yeah, I think it was a big character building moment for me. So 2 (16m 4s): Would you write like about those feelings that you're getting through school? 5 (16m 8s): Oh yeah. Okay. I mean, I, I, I wouldn't write like, directly about that, but it would just like kind of fuel it, you know? 2 (16m 16s): Right. Yeah. Cause your lyrics are, I mean, it makes sense that your mom's writer cause your lyrics are so good. Like you're such a great lyricist and songwriter and the way you, you like, there's a song on your record. I think it's the second song it's about like king of Brooklyn or 5 (16m 35s): Manhattan 2 (16m 35s): And king of Manhattan. Yeah. You're talking about like going to see the mats and like just like all these things that you're adding into the song, I'm like, how do you even like this, the sentence structure, but how it's you sing it? And it all flows and makes sense. It's like, to me that would be so difficult to, to use certain like descriptive words and like, and like drop us something like the Mets to make it in a song that actually makes sense. Like I was just blown away by your, your writing on the album. 5 (17m 4s): Thank you so much. Yeah. I'm, I'm a big lyric person. So I kind of just try and make the music fit the lyrics, if that makes sense. 2 (17m 13s): Yeah. So it's something like you have the lyrics and you're like, okay, I'll just try to make a melody and have this kind of flow together. Is that what the process? 5 (17m 21s): Basically, I don't like being like, following like such a formula when I make songs because I'm like, I have to, like my writing's a little bit, like, it's pretty like literal in a way, but it's also very like broad, like that song, for example, super literal. But like, it's just like, I needed everything to like, make sense. So I just spent a lot of time, like making sure that those lyrics fit and 2 (17m 50s): Yeah, it's great. I mean, like I said, and I will, I just want to touch real quick. You, and I don't know if this is even true. Cause the Wikipedia is burned me in the past. Did you do like a Chinese folk song or something 5 (18m 3s): That is true? 2 (18m 4s): It is true. And do you know Mandarin? Like how did you, do you speak Mandarin? 5 (18m 9s): Yeah. I mean, my, my grandfather like lived in China for a long time and he was like very adamant on us learning Mandarin. So me and my brothers all took Mandarin for a long time. My brothers studied in Shanghai for awhile. Yeah. But I quit earliest. It was like, this is so hard. But I did do like Mandarin competitions. Our teacher put us in these competitions and I would just sing. And there's like a very like classic Mandarin folk song it's called <inaudible> and it's like, everyone knows it. 5 (18m 50s): It's like about a Jasmine flower and yeah, I, I just, I just sang songs 2 (18m 58s): And you just singing in Mandarin. That's do you know, can you remember any of it or 5 (19m 2s): Not the whole thing? 2 (19m 3s): Oh, but I mean like if somebody was came up and started speaking manner to you, would you be able to go on? 5 (19m 8s): Yeah. I mean, I could do it conversationally. I understand it. 2 (19m 12s): Better 5 (19m 13s): Speak it. Yeah. It's a hard language because it's tonal. So it's like, there's a lot to remember. Oh 2 (19m 19s): Yeah. Yeah. 5 (19m 21s): And you could be like trying to say like something like the same word, like how, and it can have like a completely different meaning if you just say how versus like how, 2 (19m 33s): Oh, the high year you like your, I can't even think of it right now, but yeah. Your inflection is on the stone. Yeah. 5 (19m 43s): Yeah. 2 (19m 44s): Wow. That's interesting. Alec Benjamin has a couple of songs that he translated the lyrics in, in Mandarin. And I talked to him like a couple of weeks ago and I was so shocked by that. I'm like, whoa. And he's like, yeah, it's just like a language I was interested in and then learned. And you're the second person that I've ever spoke to that. That's so cool. 5 (20m 4s): It's a hard language to learn, but 2 (20m 6s): Right, right 5 (20m 9s): Now. 2 (20m 10s): Sure. That's cool. 5 (20m 13s): Yeah. 2 (20m 14s): With, with your songwriting, was there like a moment that it kind of changed? Like tell me about having, like getting through high school. Do you do, did I see you were touring in high school or are you just touring on your songs that you had written and like where did the change happen as far as like, what was the first little success moment you had? 5 (20m 34s): When I, when I signed that was like, 2 (20m 37s): Oh yeah. Okay. And when was that? How, like how, what year was that? 5 (20m 42s): That I was in 12th grade, so 2 (20m 46s): Wow. 5 (20m 48s): Two years ago. 2 (20m 50s): Okay. So you're still in high school. 5 (20m 53s): I was still in high school, so it was like, kind of like, okay, we're just going to chill for a bit. Lauren's going to finish high school. My parents are very like big on education. So you do well in high school. So last year just ride it 2 (21m 7s): Out. Okay. So did they, have you touring in high school or no, 5 (21m 13s): I did like an Interscope showcase and I also, it was like, kind of just like we did like Europe, Australia, which was really fun. It was kind of like a taste of it, but yeah, I put my EPO, the week lockdown was announced, so 2 (21m 32s): I saw I 5 (21m 33s): Was like hit. 2 (21m 34s): Right. So T okay. Before I get to that piece. So the song was waves, the one that had kind of attracted the attention of people. And do you throw that where up on your you're, like where, where does this Interscope find the song? 5 (21m 46s): I put it on Spotify and apple, like I had it. Yeah. And 2 (21m 53s): It just lands with people. 5 (21m 55s): Yeah. Oddly enough, 2 (21m 58s): Like the D was it playlist, like how did you start singing? And was it something that, because from what I read it, it happened pretty quickly. Right. You're getting a bunch of streams on it. 5 (22m 6s): Yeah, no, I got playlisted like pretty well. And then I put out my second song and that one did really like really well for like, for me, for like the second song. And that's kind of just like, what, 2 (22m 21s): And then you start getting phone calls or messages or, 5 (22m 24s): Yeah. 2 (22m 25s): And what was that like? Was that a, I mean, obviously validating, but was it overwhelming at all? Or 5 (22m 30s): To me, I was like, is this normal? Like, is this normal? Is this what happened? Then? Like, as I got older, I was like, it's not normal. 2 (22m 38s): You're like the fraction of a 1% of people I can actually achieve that. 5 (22m 44s): Yeah. It's pretty insane. And I like remind myself of that all the time. I'm like, you should be very, very proud of yourself because this is very awesome. 2 (22m 55s): And when you get this, you know, you're getting these messages and, and you have the song as students. So I would imagine there's other people at your high school that try to write music and are in bands and stuff. 5 (23m 4s): Yeah. There's a lot of like people that were like making beats and like family wanted to rap and stuff, 2 (23m 11s): But was this like a, Hey, a major, like, not only do I have a song that's like killing it. I have to. And I'm still in, you're still in school with these peers that had been making fun of you growing up and then like, do you even like you, do you even bring that up or you just like live life and they just can hate from afar, like even in high school where I'm sure people had to be coming up to you and being like, Hey, or was that a thing? 5 (23m 41s): I mean, they were still making fun of me. It didn't stop, but like, like Brian, for sure. Like Wiki go wait. And I was like, okay, like, there's just like castles. And I was like, Geico fun, like have fun college loser. 2 (24m 5s): Meanwhile, I'll be touring with young blood. Wow. That's incredible. Okay. So from there you saw, you put your EPL and COVID hits that must've been obviously devastating to everyone, but not only you are like riding this wave, like, oh my, you know, I'm catching some success. This is taking off, I'm getting signed to a major label and then this happens. And how do you deal with that? Like, I'm sure a bunch of planets got it. Had to be canceled. Yeah. 5 (24m 35s): I had a tour mini tour that I had sold out. Like, yeah. Like I had two songs out and this, like, it's just so, but I mean, it's like, thankfully that's all that I had to like really sacrifice, you know, like a lot, a lot, you know, had it a lot harder and it's not like a competition, but it's just like, I was healthy and like fine. But yeah. I mean, it's just a little bit of a bummer. Like I was just a little bumped. 5 (25m 15s): I remember the night that the project came out, I just was like, I'm falling asleep. Like I was really, like, I was really upset. I was like, I 2 (25m 26s): Feel like, what day did it come out? Do you remember 5 (25m 28s): About the 13th of March? 2 (25m 30s): Oh, like the day everything's locked up. Yeah. So that was probably a conversation like, oh, did we late release it yet? And then it was like, oh, we'll flatten the curve in two weeks. And we'll all be good. And then it's like, oh 5 (25m 42s): Yeah. 2 (25m 43s): Oh man. 5 (25m 45s): Yeah. I was, I was, I was pretty upset that day. I remember being really upset, but 2 (25m 52s): What can you do? Right. Do you, once that's out and obviously didn't get a chance to really support it. Do you just go back to the drawing board and start writing more songs? 5 (26m 4s): Yep. Yeah. Right away. 2 (26m 6s): Okay. And did that, was that what became the second AP of yours? 5 (26m 10s): Yep. Second AP. Fuck. A lot of my friends was in the middle there somewhere is set as a single. And then 2 (26m 18s): In that one did huge numbers. 5 (26m 20s): Yeah. That one did really well. So funny. Cause I was like, I don't really like this song now. I love it now. I love it at the time I was like this, I have one friend like, who am I singing about? I, I don't know. But it, 2 (26m 37s): But it went off and like to continue to have these big, big moments. I'm sure it just the validation of what you're up to and what you're doing. 5 (26m 46s): Yeah. That was big for me. That was really big for me. So yeah. And then writing the second APU, we wrote it in Montreal and that was like one of the summers where it sort of like kind of phasing out a little bit. It was like getting a bit more chill. Like I would see people, but like make them test before it was like, so we did, we did that. So we wrote the AP and we wrote the entire AP like two weeks and Montreal. Yeah. 2 (27m 20s): Oh my gosh. Wow. Yeah. And that comes out and again just does incredibly well. 5 (27m 27s): Yeah. I mean it's yeah. I love writing so much. So it's like any chance I'm like, 2 (27m 37s): So you're just constantly writing. So like the fact that you could follow up the nippy with another one within a year that wasn't a big deal and now you have a full album coming out. Like, so like once the EPS out, like tell me about now getting into a full album. Was that totally different? Is that a different mindset or did you know it was going to be a full album when you started writing it? 5 (27m 57s): Yeah, no, I did. Funny enough. Like I was, I mean, I think a lot of people were, I was terrified. I said it was like, but I was like, I was writing with them. Makes you notice for the album is doing a few songs with him. And I said to him, I was like, I'm so nervous. Like I don't really know what I was supposed to be doing. I'm scared. 2 (28m 22s): Were you nervous around him? Just because it was hammer just nervous in general. 5 (28m 25s): That was about it. Like they be like being my debut album and he was like, cause obviously like he's a legend and has like Mike Park is so many albums out and he's like, it's scary, but it's just like writing an AP. He's like, you're writing a longer version of an AP and you will have so many more to like, do whatever you want on. And like, this is just the start of this. And I was like, that makes me feel better because for me it was like consuming me. It was like actually consuming me. And it's still like does in a way. Cause I'm like so scared about it and whatever, but that was like really helpful for me. 5 (29m 8s): But then there were some people that were like, yeah, this is your day. This is your debut. And I'm like, yeah, it is my debut. So I'm kind of just like this all the time. 2 (29m 17s): Well, having two EPS out that do well I'm sure helps obviously, but in this world of not a lot of people are putting out out on the fact that you're putting an album out. I think that says a lot about you. I mean, you could just be like, okay, I'm going to release a single and then I'm going to write another single and then just play this game of like put a song out, let it sit there for four months and then, you know, follow, follow, follow it. But the fact that you have enough songs that are that good, that they could all stand on as a single and you're gonna put it out on a record. I mean, I think that's, that's something that not a lot of artists are even doing now. I mean, some, it takes some artists like four or five, you know, releases before an album is even in the, in the, you know, in the equation at all. 5 (30m 1s): Yeah. Thank you. I mean, yeah. I love the, I love making a project. It's, it's a whole different thing than just putting out the same, like a single or whatever. There's a lot of creativity behind it and there's more than just the music, which is awesome. It's fun. It's a fun process. So yeah. I like, 2 (30m 23s): So you knew going into it though that it was going to be a full album and okay. And then when you start writing the album, tell me like, okay, what was the first song that you said, okay, this is, this is the direction like, was there an, like an umbrella of kind of an idea you want it to run with? 5 (30m 39s): Yeah, it was when I wrote Emilia, which is the closing song of a project. That's when I was like, I know what this album is going to be. And it really helped shape the album, 2 (30m 51s): Which is a great song. Thank you. It's very, it's like a slow, like more chill song on the record. So I said Julia and the king was the second song and it's not, I'm sure it's not it's I look now at the thing I have, which is just like kind of the record all over the place, 5 (31m 8s): Right in the middle. 2 (31m 8s): Right, right. I know I have the track listing now, but it wasn't in the order that I <inaudible>, that's funny. Okay. Because that one would definitely, wasn't the last song on the, our first song on the one I'm listening. All right. Nevermind. Anyway, so that started it and that's the first song on the record. 5 (31m 29s): Okay. 2 (31m 30s): Our last song on the record. Sorry, last song on the record. And from there, do you just work by like, okay, so now, you know, an Emilia is a song that's going to set the tone for the album. And from there, is it about this person or like an idea of this person? 5 (31m 47s): It's all like follows the idea that like everything is being addressed to her. And so everything's almost like a letter to her, but it's also like she is supposed to like symbolize this part of your brain. So she's a part of you. She is like yourself and throughout the project, you just put more and more stress on her. Cause it starts way more innocent. And then it kind of gets a little bit deeper and a little bit more emotional as the project goes on and you put more like emotional weight on her and tell she kind of just like disappears. 5 (32m 28s): Like she can't take it anymore because so it's like kind of, you know, talk like open up about your feelings, open up about it. Like everything, like talk to someone because that helps or also start like losing bits of yourself, which is like, when I miss myself, it's about, it's like a foreshadow to that foreshadowing that 2 (32m 53s): Oh yeah. Cause that's the first, is that the first song on the record? Yeah. Okay. So that's the one that starts it up and I, and I love how it starts. Like it's a, it's an acoustic E I mean it's acoustic in the beginning and it kind of, then it builds up in and it gets a bit heavier towards the back of the song, which is a cool way to start the record. And it sounds a bit different than a lot of the other songs on the album. 5 (33m 16s): Yeah. Yeah. It was one of actually the last song that I wrote, it was the last song I wrote for the album. 2 (33m 23s): So really? 5 (33m 24s): Yeah. We were like, we've gone to the student. We're like, we're writing the intro track today and then we just did it and it's like, it makes sense. I mean, sonically it's like, yeah, it's very like acoustic. It's kind of just like tell the ad. It's kind of like, kind of like more Rocky, if that makes sense. But it's like, yeah, I don't know. I was just like, it fits for some reason just lyrically. It feels 2 (33m 52s): Sure 5 (33m 53s): It works. 2 (33m 54s): And did you work, how much, how many songs on the record did you work with Mike? Shinoda on the whole album? 5 (33m 60s): Well, none of, none of the songs ended up 2 (34m 3s): Making the record. 5 (34m 5s): Yeah. 2 (34m 6s): Oh, interesting. But then the idea of the thing for him with him or no, not at all. 5 (34m 11s): Not really. I was working with him for a while, but it was before I kind of had the idea. So like we had like a bunch of great songs together, but they just didn't fit on the project if that makes sense. 2 (34m 23s): Okay. And then you, then you get an work with a different producer on the, on the rest of the record. 5 (34m 30s): Yeah. It was arguing with Jeff who I've literally done it. Every project with 2 (34m 35s): That's what I was thinking. Is that somebody that you've known for a while? 5 (34m 38s): Yeah. I've known Jeff. We started together basically. He started a little bit before me, but yeah, we kind of built together. 2 (34m 48s): Great. Where did, where did he start with you? Did you already have waves and those songs about 5 (34m 54s): Waves with them? Yeah. 2 (34m 55s): Wow. So did you know each other growing up? 5 (34m 58s): No. I mean, he's just, he was honestly just another dude from Toronto and we like haunted and I was like, okay, like, we're like, we had like the exact same upbringing and like we got along as friends and then we just made music together. I mean, he's like significantly, like he's been at it for like longer than I am. He's older than me. He's like, he's like a brother 2 (35m 28s): Time. 5 (35m 29s): I've known him for so long. It's one of the oldest or like oldest people. I know. Not, not old and age, 2 (35m 37s): Longest friends. So to speak, like, what is it? So how did you meet him? I'm now I'm curious to know that long. And then he's been on this ride with you since before Interscope gets involved or before the viral success of even the first song that you released. 5 (35m 53s): Yeah. My manager was managing him as well, so he was like try working with Jeff and I'd go to Jeff's every Sunday and we'd write and I'd like, bring my homework to Jeff's and we'd just like, get everything done. 2 (36m 10s): So he'd smash. You you'd have to do your history, homework, and then 5 (36m 15s): Bristol boards and like glue for my presentation. 2 (36m 22s): That's funny. And these are writing and then it's, and he, he's stuck with you since even the next two EPS that you put out. And then up until this, this, this album as well, 5 (36m 31s): It's one of the most like loyal, talented people I've I've actually ever met. Probably. 2 (36m 42s): Wow. That's great. That is so cool. Oh, that is so cool. And then, so you're on tour now and then you're, you're doing your own run of shows right after, and it looks like you're going to be on the road for a long time, right? A year on you're on the road now. And who are you? I forgot who you're touring with at the second 5 (37m 2s): Bank Camino right now. 2 (37m 3s): Oh yeah, the band Camino. Okay, cool. 5 (37m 5s): Yeah. 2 (37m 6s): And then you're doing another tour and then your own headlining tour. 5 (37m 10s): Yeah. So I just got off like a month and a half long tour at six weeks. And then I went straight to this one, which we're playing the second last show tonight. And then I have a couple of festivals and then my headline is like from August to basically November, which is crazy. 2 (37m 31s): That is so awesome. Or how are you going to approach that any differently? I mean, I would imagine not being the opener and having to headline is that 5 (37m 39s): It's so different. Like it's, it feels like a different thing. I mean, it's all so fun, but being able to have, like, you could put a hundred percent of your creativity into the show. Like there's no limits, like there obviously are limits, but like, I mean, like you're not being like to the headliner, I want to bring my own light. I want to do this, whatever. Like it's not going to happen if you're opening, you know? Right, 2 (38m 8s): Right. You're kind of just there. I mean, you're there to support the main act and it's got a time limit. I'm sure. Like you have this much time to play and you kind of have to, 5 (38m 18s): You're a little more reserved. Cause you're like, oh, that like a majority of these people are not here for me. So I'm still like putting in a hundred percent into these shows, but like there's a different energy when it's like your crowd in a way that it's like, you just cause you feed off the crowd's energy so much. And like having people be there for you. It's like, so it's so different. Yeah. It's pretty awesome though. 2 (38m 46s): Well, that's so amazing. Congratulations and arrow to doing some shows with Alexandra 23 as well. I saw that very, a great person I've interviewed before. 5 (38m 56s): Yeah. 2 (38m 58s): So super awesome. Well, congratulations on everything. Like I said, the album is amazing. I really, really, really dig it. And it's real quick on the Jake book thing. How did you, how did that relationship start? 5 (39m 11s): Yeah. Oh my God. That's the craziest one. So I've literally been the biggest Jake bug fan for, since I was like 13, like he's one of my favorite artists actually of all time. So Jeff that's one of the first things we bonded over was Jake buck because he also loves shape bugs. So we wrote the song, we didn't write a second verse. And we were like, Jake bug is going to be on the second verse of this song. Like the other people were like, okay, like, can you just put a second verse in? Because like you can't hand a song in without a second verse. And it was 2 (39m 47s): Like, 5 (39m 48s): Watch us, watch us do this right now. So told her manager, I was like, Hey Riley, I think bug's going to be on the song. He's like, okay. And like months go by 2 (40m 3s): And it didn't have this confirmed at all. Or it was just like, oh 5 (40m 6s): No, the manifest. Like you're just like, yeah, 2 (40m 13s): Yeah, 5 (40m 13s): Exactly. And then like months go by and I get a text from Eileen and was like, Hey, here's an update of let you down. And I'm like, what did we update? And let you down? Like, I was just so oblivious. I was so oblivious. I was like, what was being updated? And I played it in the car and then Jake bugs started taking it up to bawl my eyes out. Like it surprised me. 2 (40m 36s): That is so special. Wow. 5 (40m 38s): Yeah, it was really awesome. That was one of the moments where I was like, wow. I like, all my friends are called my same teacher and they were like crying. Cause they're like the ones that know, you know? So 2 (40m 50s): He's such a great person. Have you had a chance to meet him or to just have that on the, 5 (40m 54s): No, I spoke to him over text. That's the extent of our conversation. I'm like, I don't even know if I'd be able to talk to him in person. Cause I'm like, 2 (41m 5s): He's such a sweet person. You would be totally able to talk to him. I, I met him one time when I was working for a radio station in San Diego and he came by and did like a little acoustic thing and he was so cool. He took, I have an older son too. He took a bunch of pictures with them. He let him like, you know, tink around with a guitar. I mean, he's just such the sweetest person. And I hadn't seen his name come up for a while. So it was like, and to see him on your record, I was like, oh wow, like that's so rad. 5 (41m 32s): Yeah. Yeah. It's definitely like, like the, it's like a, like an acoustic kind of like classic Jake bug. 2 (41m 42s): Yeah. Very, very cool. Well again, thank you so much for doing this. I really, really appreciate it. I'm going to go see you. I'm going to celebrate my birthday at the end with you and I want to see your headlining show. I'm super excited. And I do have one more quick question for you actually to now, are you going to put the record out on the vinyl? 5 (42m 2s): Yes. 2 (42m 3s): Okay, perfect. Hopefully it'll be at that show or I have to order it in second because I know that's a bit of a thing where it's hard to get them. Oh, well I would love that, but, and second, if you have any advice for aspiring artists 5 (42m 20s): Yeah. Just keep like, stay true to yourself. Don't let anyone be an asshole. Cause people will be assholes. Don't let it get to your head. Be honest, be honest with yourself. Don't be too hard on yourself. Yeah. Thing D everything takes time. So don't expect it to be like the movies