An Interview With The Talented Singer-Songwriter HARLŒ!
Posted On 12 Jul 2017
Harlœ recently released her brand new single “More Than Ever” from her forthcoming debut EP Liquid Truth (Crooked Paintings). The moody low-key banger, which premiered via W Magazine, is a stark and confessional heartbreak track.
Hyper-charged with emotion, it fits perfectly into Harlœ’s striking, bold, and primal anthems full of simmering dark R&B, booming trap and artful instrumentation.
“More Than Ever” is the follow-up to Harlœ’s breakout single “All In My Feelings,” a track that racked up over 2 million Spotify streams and hit #1 on Hype Machine as well as Top 5 on Spotify’s U.S. and Global Viral Charts after its initial release last Fall. Earlier this year, Harlœ teamed up with Chicago rapper Dreezy for the re-release of “All In My Feelings”. A D.I.Y. artist at heart, Harlœ discovered a newfound confidence in her killer production skills after the success of “All in My Feelings,” a creative turning point that laid the foundation for the EP. Harlœ was drawn to crispy and crunchy tones that sound offbeat and imperfect, but she found clarity in the imperfection. From the title track “Liquid Truth,” which summons gospel energy and cathedral-filling bombast over jagged beats and classical piano, to the propulsive and enchanting “Once In A While,” the Liquid Truth EP showcases the many facets of Harlœ – a gifted vocalist, a classically trained pianist, a creator of indelible melodies, a cut-to-the-bone songwriter and a badass producer. It is a raw, unapologetic, and poetic narrative of love, heartbreak, strength, and vulnerability that illuminates the Queens, NY native’s honesty and heart.
Stepping out from behind her role as a songwriter for the likes of Charli XCX, JoJo, and Britney Spears, Harlœ is embracing her own artistry. An empowered one-woman tour de force, she constructs a world all her own in the space between urban grit and high fashion elegance.
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Learn more about Harloe in the following All Access interview:
Thanks for your time! What are some words you would use to describe 2016 for you and your music? How has 2017 been treating you?
The 2016 catalyst that started everything for me artistically was the inspiration. It was the story that I wrote about on this EP. 2017 has been great – a lot of learning lessons, experiences, and growing pains, but a lot of fun and really exciting things! I can’t wait to see what’s in store for the rest of it.
Where does this interview find you today? Is there music playing in the background? If so, what is it?
I just worked out, and now I’m in a Starbucks in Los Feliz. Beyoncé’s “Love On Top” is playing in the background so life is good.
Growing up, did you always want to be a musician? Can you recall your earliest musical memory? If you weren’t an artist today, what else could you see yourself doing?
My earliest memory was taking piano lessons. I feel super lucky that my parents put me in piano lessons when I was 3 years old, and I always loved it. Of course practicing was hard, but I’m grateful now. I love kids and working with kids, so if I wasn’t an artist I think I would want to be a teacher of some sort.
Let’s talk about your latest single, “More Than Ever.” Where did the inspiration for this track come from originally? How does this song and your previous single “All In My Feelings” prepare people for your “Liquid Truth” EP to be released soon
“More Than Ever” was a natural progression from “All In My Feelings.” The first riff you hear in the beginning is the first thing I started humming. I played that out and the line “I can’t stand it but I’m needing it more than ever” just came to me. The song really wrote itself, and “More Than Ever” and “All In My Feelings” go together naturally.
These two songs really set the tone for what the EP feels like. Not necessarily what it sounds like, but more of the vibe that you get. It’ll be exciting for people to find out what their favorite is and what they can take away from it. I think these two songs are a good way for people to get to know me, kind of the first door to open to see what I’m about.
What was it like putting together your first personal piece of work? Did anything surprise you at all about the entire process?
It was amazing to create a picture from beginning to end about what I had to say in my heart and my soul. What surprised me was how much time it actually takes to produce tracks as a top liner first, write for other artists, and then walk out. The producers are what make the track amazing. I had never seen the full process before, or the time it took to take it from point A to point B. I have a whole new respect for the producers that I work with like Mick Schultz, Jason Evigan, Greg Wells and Andrew Goldstein. It’s a lot of effort and they bring a lot of the magic to a song, and now I understand what that’s like.
Can you talk about producing, playing all the music and singing on your debut EP? What was it like having full control of it all? Was it something that you intended to do from the beginning?
I always looked up to producers and artists who did that like Prince, Sting and even Mariah Carey. I found the courage over the past two years to really dive into producing and start trusting myself with the sounds and ideas that I had. Make mistakes because it’s the only way you’ll truly find out what you’re about.
I understand that you have been writing songs for big artists like Charli XCX, Jojo and Britney Spears, so I am curious why you have now chosen to sing on your written song? Why did you feel like this was the right time?
Through all of those experiences, and now that I really have a story to tell, I’ve learned a lot more about who I am. I didn’t plan on it, but I wrote “All In My Feelings” and I felt naturally inspired to do this on my own. So here we are!
You have worked alongside so many incredible artists. Does one relationship/experience stand out the most to you?
I recently wrote with Kelly Clarkson in Nashville, and her vibe is unreal. She knows what she wants, and in my opinion, there’s no one out right now that sings like her. Being inspired by her as a kid when she was on Idol and now getting to work with her is pretty amazing.
Who are some of your very favorite artists or rather, what musicians have continued to inspire you and your music? What musicians would you absolutely love to work with in the future?
Favorite Artist right now: Francis And The Lights
Musician that inspires me: Prince
Work with in the future: Kanye
At the end of the day, what do you hope is the message of your music? What do you hope people take away from your songs?
I hope that people find it freeing and that people find themselves immersed in it. When it’s fun, I want people to have fun and feel it.
What advice would you give to someone just getting started on this music path? Or even to a high schooler who is thinking of becoming a singer full-time when they are older?
I think it’s persistence. There will be a lot of times where you feel like no one is listening. You need to believe in yourself more than anyone else can, because it’s all about you and your love of music. The reason why you started is what will keep you going. When you’re stuck, going back to the drawing board is the best way to get yourself back up.
Is there anything else that you would like to share with our readers about yourself or your music?
Honestly, thank you to anyone who’s reading this for taking the time to find out what I have to say, I really appreciate it.