Alexis Lynn Interview

This interview has been edited for clarity and flow.

On March 14, for episode 3 of the Backline Beat Podcast, I had a quick chat with up-and-coming pop artist, Alexis Lynn. In the interview we talked about her influences, using music as a way of opening up, and some of her favourite things.

You can watch the interview above. Or read it below.

 Jade Dempsey: Who are you? And tell us I little bit about yourself.

Alexis Lynn:

Yeah, sure. I’m. Alexis Lynn, I am a songwriter and artist from Surrey, and my background is in Caldwell first nation, and I’m also German. I’ve been song writing now since I was 16, and I started releasing music in 2019, and I recently released my first full length album, which is exciting. I write a lot of songs about mental health, and the challenges that come along with that. And yeah, it’s kinda what I’m up to.

What was the defining moment that made you want to be a musician?

Oh, I think I knew like when I was young. I remember I loved singing along to like the radio in the car, when I was really young. I begged my parents to put me into singing lessons and music lessons of some sort, and so I think I always knew I wanted to be a singer. It changed for me when I started writing songs at 16. It kind of changed  from being like this is just something fun, and I want to be in the spotlight to, I want to be an artist, and I have something to say, and my own stories to tell. So I think that’s kind of the moment that it really shifted for me.

Did you want to do something else, that fell be the wayside, once you found songwriting and music?

Kind of yeah, I was actually a really high, level, competitive soccer player. So my plan was actually to go to the States and play soccer in university on a scholarship. It kind of just became something I didn’t love as much anymore. Yeah, I’m not really sure what I would have done after that. But that was kind of like where I was headed at that point, and before I change my mind.

What position did you play?

I was a goalkeeper.

Me too.


When you were finding you voice, and starting to write songs, who were your inspirations in that time?

Oh, one of my biggest inspirations has always been Amy Winehouse. Also, like Michael Jackson and Alicia Keys. I think when I first started writing it was definitely like those three, and I had always looked up to Amy Winehouse because she’s always like so raw and authentic, and had, you know, had such a way of storytelling in her songs that was so different than like anything else I’d kind of really seen at that point.
And with Michael Jackson I think he was just such like a pop icon. He was a superstar, so I think that was like the amazement of that. And to know that is possible, for someone to be such an icon. I think, was really inspiring to me.
And Alicia Keys. That’s when I started playing piano when I started writing songs. So she was just someone I always looked up to that had that.

Starting on piano, and wiring piano ballads, how did you find your pop sound? Were you always striving for that or did it come naturally?

I think a bit of both. I think I knew, you know, like I loved writing ballads on piano, and I think it was kind of like natural, but…I always did want to be in kind of like a pop vein of music, and I found that really started happening for me naturally when I started co-writing with people. I kind of realized it was a different way to write songs because I think at first I was quite scared to. You know? You get so comfortable with just writing with yourself, and it’s very vulnerable kind of opening up someone, and telling them some personal story that you’re about to write about, and also like having these, you know, raw ideas just come out. So yeah, I think that really shifted it for me, too, is writing with other people, and you know kind of realizing there’s like a world of possibility when you write with anyone else where you have ideas that you may have never come up with yourself. It kind of shifted the way I write, but also my sound in a way, and kind of finding a niche I really enjoy.

Speaking of opening yourself up. You have songs, “House on Fire” (about addiction), and your latest single “Something To Prove” (about relationships), which are vastly different topics. Can you talk about, even though they are so different, what it’s like expressing yourself that way through you music?

Yeah, I think it’s really cathartic for me honestly. It’s very therapeutic, and I think it’s my way of being able to process something. I think the initial writing of it can be, you know, very healing. But then, yeah, coming to releasing it, and realizing that other people are going to hear it, it’s kind of a whole different experience. [laughs]
I’ve always found writing is very expressive for me. There’s an obstacle to get over before I release something, is realizing that, okay, everyone is going to hear this. And this fact about me, or this story about me… or however  they’re going to interpret it, because music is interpreted in som many different ways. So it can be really vulnerable, but I think it’s something that’s really important.
Also, because I think you know, my favourite songs are ones that are vulnerable, and that I felt that I can relate to that, you know, you either can’t talk about it, or felt that no one else has talked about. So I think, having that, and maybe providing that for someone else is kind of what I strive for as a songwriter.

Are you a naturally open person, or do find you’re only able to be so open if you put in a song?

Yeah, I’m quite private [laughs]. I’ve gotten I think a lot better at that. I’ve worked through a lot of that,  to open up a bit more. I think music is really helped with that, because again, you know, I can write a  million songs, but as soon as you realize that you’re going to show it to people it kind of feels like you’re naked in a way. I think I’ve gotten better with being more open. But it definitely I kind of do tend to, you know, hide behind the guise of music, or defend myself with a sheet of pop music in front of what i’m saying.

Do you think having to talk about your songs, has made you more open personally?

Definitely. Because I think, you know, once it’s out, people deserve to know what it’s about  or whatnot. I think being able to talk about it has helped me a lot. And yeah, I think it’s cool. I always love hearing artists talk about what they wrote their song about, because I think again, you can interpret something a million different ways. But yeah, being seen like that, and having people perceive you like that, I think can be challenging. I think it’s pushed me a lot.


You talked about a little bit about your heritage earlier. How did that influence your music, if at all?

Yeah, I think I’ve always been as someone who’s grown up outside of my band and outside of our culture. My whole family has. It’s been like work for me to reconnect, and I’ve always felt a really strong pull of reconnecting, and I’ve been working a lot on that, but I think something that’s always felt natural to me is like storytelling, and through spoken word and through songs, and I think that’s something that’s always felt really right. It’s always felt very connected to me, and being able to share. You know my voice and my stories. It’s all very innate. So I think there’s a lot of other ways I’ve also been reconnecting and learning and healing, but songwriting and storytelling is one that I always come back to.

As a relatively new artist, having just released you first full length album. Do you have in mind where you want to go, or are you just taking it one day at a time?

I think both. Like I’ve been focused on just writing right now, and I’ve written a few songs like that I really love, and that are maybe a bit different than what I’ve put out now. But I think I’m always, you know, evolving as a songwriter and as an artist, whether that’s in, you know, like sound or whatever it may be. But I think I have a vision of what I want to do next. I think I’m also learning. You know the more and more I do it, you know how it’s going to change and evolve, and what it might become. But yeah, I think I’m really excited for what i’m working on right now, and what’s going to be the next thing. But i’m also still trying to like, celebrate, and be very proud of the album that I just put out, because I think that was something that was very important to me. And yeah, I’m glad I get to share with everybody.

Who was the first person you shared the album with?

Ooh, I remember I got…I guess this would have been after I showed to people, but I do remember I finally got all the masters back, so I’d already like written the songs that I had like good mixes and stuff, but I got all the masters back. I had them all compiled in one like folder, and I just. I sat in my kitchen, and I listen to them, and I’m really just started crying. I was like so excited and so proud to just see, like the full body of work to come together, but I think the first person I probably showed most of it to, was my mom. My mom is one of my biggest supporters, and so I always share my new music with her. And when i’m writing and stuff, but I think it was yeah, my mom and then one of my best friends is who I showed. I think, the whole kind of body of work.

In 10 years, where are you?

Hmm. I want to be on tour. On like a headlining tour. I would love that.

In what kind of venue?

I wanna do like, and arena tour. Yeah, I want to play Rogers (Arena), and play  all the arenas. I think that would be crazy.

This is a question I ask everyone. If you were to meet a civilization that had never heard music before. What would you play them? It could be one of your songs or someone else’s.

Oh, God, Okay…This is a hard question, because I feel like I have so many answers, like the greatest song of all time, but also, I think, like, currently. One of the songs that has blown my mind, most recently is “Golden Hour” by JVKE. Just because of the sonics of that song. I think the dynamics of it are insane, and it’s so incredible. so I think I’d show them that as the most recent…but all time? I don’t know… That’s a hard question…I’m going to stick with “Golden Hour,” for now.

Sticking with recent music. What song from the last year resonated with you the most?

Hmm…I’d say I related a lot last year with “Free Fall” by Rainbow Kitten Surprise.

Okay. I’m not aware of them?

They’re like an alternative indie band. They’re really cool. Yeah.

Who would be your dream collaborator? Actually, let’s make this a two parter. Who would you like to feature on one of your songs, and who’s song would you like to feature on?


I would love to get Doja Cat. I think if she was featuring on one of my songs. I think she’s so cool and versatile. And I’d love to feature on Ariana Grande’s…anything she does…yeah.

Do you have a favourite song of either of them?

Umm…Doja Cat, I don’t. I think she so versatile in so many ways, that I don’t. She so different in so many ways. I love everything she does. But Ariana Grande? One of my favourites. I think the thank u, next album, in general, is one of my favourites…hmm…”Needy” is one of my favourite songs by her.

You play the piano. Do you play any other instruments?

No. I play a little bit of guitar of guitar, but I wouldn’t even say that, because I’m not very good at it. [laughs]

Having just release your first full album. What would be your advice to someone that is where you were in 2019?

I would say, like don’t be afraid of failing, and don’t be afraid of rejection, because not everybody is gonna like what you’re doing, and also failing is a natural part of succeeding as someone. I think you have to fail first to get better.

Can you explain what music is to you?

Music to me is art. It’s expressive. It’s healing. I think it’s storytelling. It’s something that I make part of every single day, whether I’m listening to it or making it. It’s something that feels very much a part of me. But I also feel like I am very much a part of it. If that makes sense. I think, yeah, I think it’s important. I think it’s so important. I think it’s universal to everybody. Yeah, I think it’s…I’m blessed, I think, to be involved in music, and to be to be able to experience it in creating it as well as like enjoying it.

Finally. You’ve introduced yourself, not can you exit yourself, so to speak?

Sure. thank you so much for having me. My name is Alexis Lynn, and you can find me as Alexis Lynn, on all streaming platforms, and as AlexisLynnMusic on all social media.

Well, thank you very much, and have a good rest of your day.

Thank you so much for having me. Bye.

Alexis Lynn's Favourites & Firsts

Right now it’s “Ceilings” by Lizzie McAlpine. I can’t say all time.

All time. Back to Black by Amy Winehouse
Right now? Sza’s SOS.

Again, I’m going to recently with, Rainbow Kitten Surprise. 

Play? I played recently at performance worse on grand violin that was really cool. I also played Venue. It’s called Venue, that was a great Venue.
Watch? I love watching at the Orpheum.

I love the Harry Potter series. But singular movie? The Grand Budapest Hotel.
TV Show?
Shameless. (US)


First Concert:
Watched? Tim McGraw, with my mom.
Played? Kerrisdale Idol or school talent shows.

*I should say i’m going to say the Kerrisdale Idol one is probably one of my first. It was really good, but I was, I remember, being so nervous that I was like shaking.
Do you still get nervous?
I do. I get nervous. I definitely get really nervous before, but I think it turns more now into excitement. Now i’m able to manage it a bit better.

Thank you again to Alexis. You can check her out here.

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Hey, Jade here. Thanks for visiting Backline Beat. If you like the site and would like to help support it, I’d be very grateful. Every little bit helps. Right now I’m an army of one, and would like at some point to be able to bring on other voices, to be a part of Backline Beat. Below, are links to Patreon, PayPal, and Linktree.

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Thanks again, and I can’t wait to grow this with you.

                                                      — Jade Dempsey  

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