Q: Walk us through your writing and production process in making “Alibi”.
BRIE SPAULDING: The process of creating Alibi was kind of an unusual one for me. I knew I wanted that overall dark-synth sound from the beginning, but I completely rewrote the lyrics four times. I tend to keep most of the lyrics that flow out in the initial writing process. Usually the first thing that comes to my mind is what I really mean, but writing Alibi was more like peeling back the layers of an onion. There was a lot of hurt behind it, and the first write came off as very surface-level anger. I was definitely angry, but that wasn’t quite what I was trying to say. Each rewrite got me a little closer to the core until I eventually landed on the released version that really isn’t so much about being mad anymore, but about feeling hurt, guilty, depressed, betrayed, scared. When you lose someone really close to you, the feelings you’re left with are complicated like that, but it took a little work to draw that vulnerability from myself. Actually, I wrote the final lyrics after the third version had already been fully recorded. While I was working on production though, I realized what I recorded still wasn’t quite authentic enough. I cried through the entire last rewrite, and that’s how I really knew I was finally writing honest lyrics.
Q: Was there a pivotal moment in your life when you decided to follow your path as a musician?
BRIE: I’ve always been passionate about music and about singing, but for the longest time I was planning to go to medical school. I spent years working toward that and working as an emergency medical technician. There were a lot of things I loved about that, but during that time I was really struggling with anxiety and depression. Mid-2019 was a major low point for me. I kind of came to realize that the only thing that brought me any comfort was creating music. When I was writing songs, I felt relief from what otherwise started to feel like a very bleak life. Everything around me felt blurry and empty, but when it came to music, I could still see clearly. The thing I loved the most about working in medicine was really the way I could positively impact people’s lives, so I hope I can still do that with my music. There’s a lot I want to say, a lot I want to share, and if even just one person can relate to it and take comfort in it, I’ll consider that a success.
Q: Who would you most like to collaborate with, if it could be anyone in the world?
BRIE: I would love to collaborate with FINNEAS. He has such a unique ability to really tell the honest truth in his songwriting, and all his productions have such great attention to detail. I’m completely self-taught as a producer like he is, so he’s given me a lot of inspiration there.
Q: In your own words, how would you describe the music that you typically create?
BRIE: I try not to get too boxed into any certain sound or vibe. My music is definitely minimalistic in some ways, because I make a point of never adding an instrument or sound just for the sake of adding it. Everything has its purpose and I really want every word, every note to contribute to the song in a meaningful way. I would definitely also describe it as raw and authentic, or at least it feels that way to me in the process of writing and producing. I want each of my songs to have their own feel entirely, and just to write what feels true to each situation. I think I would be doing my music a disservice if I tried to sound too much like my previous songs, or especially if I modeled too heavily after other artists. What’s the point of creating art that’s already been created, you know? What I want is to share a unique perspective, for my music to be my own take on life. It’s such a great emotional outlet that way, but I hope it’s also relatable to other people. I really hope I can make others feel understood in some way, maybe even in a new way. Some of my favorite artists have definitely done that for me.
Q: What projects are currently in the works?
BRIE: I’ll be releasing another single very soon. My upcoming single, as well as Alibi and Flowers for the Dead, will be part of a seven track EP coming in the near future. I think the EP really shows the different sides of my music, and definitely shows the different sides of me as a person. I can’t wait to share it!
Q: Any parting words to your fans?
BRIE: What I really want fans to know is that they mean as much to me as I mean to them. Actually, they probably mean more to me. My music would be nowhere without the support. I would be nowhere without the support. Anyone who’s listened to or shared my music, or who’s reached out to me, I love and appreciate you. You’re everything to me.
Interviewed by Stephanie Pankewich
FOLLOW BRIE SPAULDING: