Plugged In: Interview with the Stunningly Electric alxxa
With a passion for music and the physics that compose it, budding artist alxxa has steadily been climbing the charts as a voice to be reckoned with. Following the release of her brand new video for premier single off of her EP, “icy love,” we got the chance to chat with LA-based artist alxxa about what fuels her creativity and keeps her grounded in the music industry.
To start off, why don’t you tell our readers a little bit about yourself. What first drew you to start making music?
My names alxxa, also known as Alex to my friends and fam. I grew up in Wilmington, Delaware and started taking piano lessons at age 5. I was always singing and the writing just started happening naturally when I was 12. It felt like my own little secret and it thrilled me to create original music… but I also was very protective and almost embarrassed over it. I didn’t start opening up about my original music until I was about 16 or so.
What did your musical interests consist of growing up versus now?
Growing up I listened to a lot of sad/emo/tweenage girl shit: Sarah McLachlan, Death Cab for Cutie, Blink 182, Linkin Park, The Used, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs… many more obscure ones in between. I fell in love with Radiohead in high school and they have stayed true as my favorite band, but I listen to stuff all over the map. I’ve more recently been influenced by Charlie XCX, Julia Michaels, Post Malone, Bazzi… but am oddly falling back in love with my sad girl roots too.
What are some stigmas that you have had to fend off being a woman in this industry?
I’m extremely lucky to be surrounded by a very supportive team of mostly men that respect me and truly believe in my talent rather than the surface level qualities. However, like many women in this industry I’ve definitely had to fight various stereotypes and assumptions. People will still sometimes assume you’re dumb or try to pressure you into uncomfortable sexual situations because of their position or status. Never a fun time.
Are there any words of advice you would give to women battling these same issues, or women looking to get involved in the music industry?
Be strong and confident in yourself, definitely stay away from the toxic men that make you feel uncomfortable, but don’t become too much of a manhater. There are plenty of good ones with good hearts. Women in music are definitely rising right now so its only a matter of time until we can really all have our moment to shine.
Where do your main sources of inspiration come from? Or rather, what is your ideal environment to create in?
My main creative hubs are my home studio in Koreatown and my producer Mike Gazzo’s studio in Hollywood. My writing process originally started alone, so there is still something rather sacred and relieving for me to work alone at my studio. It is still the place where I truly feel most free and fearless in my writing/production choices. However, finding people you work well with is essential, and I’ve been insanely lucky to find a friend and collaborator like Gazzo. He is phenomenal and we work very seamlessly together co-producing at his studio. His skill is absurd but he is very supportive of my production as well and has taught me so much.
And you released your debut EP body earlier this year, what did it feel like to put that out into the world after it was finally finished?
I was pretty nervous to put out a body of work like that because I have just been riding the single train for so long. But putting it out was kind of like ripping the band-aid, and I’m sort of hype about projects again now. There is something much more artistic about putting together multiple songs together to create one cohesive statement. Body gave me a chance to show my sexy side, and the EP was really fun all around.
Do you have a favorite song off of that EP?
I think it’s a tie between “icy love” and “body.” “icy love” was a blast to make with producer Gabe Sackier, and it just has such a different and cool vibe. I wrote and produced the demo for “body” myself, which served as the skeleton for the final product you hear on the EP. I was really pleased with the writing and took some risks with the production that were a lot of fun to hear come together once I brought it in to Gazzo to finish.
What process did it take to create the video for “icy love”?
The video just felt like a bunch of people following me and a girlfriend around the city having a super extra hipster night. I got to wear fun alien outfits, dance around, sit in a chair and sexily brood in my lyrics, and run around the city doing hoodrat shit with one of my pals. We “stole” 40s (not actually, but props to the super cool liquor store dude that let us video that), played on train tracks (and got yelled at), snuck onto a Metro Bus (again, props to the Metro dude) and after wrapping ate some dank fried chicken. It was a great day.
So, what comes next for you as we are approaching the midway mark of the year?
Gazzo and I are currently finishing up my first album… which is so so wild for me. We are really making this one special… it’s gonna be a piece of art from start to finish and start to let my listeners in on some more personal stories. Release dates TBA soon!
Is there anything else that you would like to share with our readers?
Thank you so much for your support and keep on vibing. Reach out to me on instagram @alxxamusic and I’d love to hear what your favorites are. More on the way very soon 🙂