Interview: Lauren Aquilina

The 17 year old singer-songwriter, Lauren Aquilina, has been quite busy with gigs and promoting her EP ‘Fools’, but she took some time out of her busy schedule to answer a few questions we had for her. Read the interview below to find out how hard it really is for her to go down the hard way and who’s mind she would like to be inside of for a day. 
Melisa Baykent: Hi! First of all do you think you could introduce yourself to the SoftConcrete readers and also tell us how you got involved in music?
Lauren Aquilina: Hello! I’m Lauren Aquilina, and I’m a 17 year old songwriter from Berkshire in England. I always loved music I guess, from a very early age. We had a piano in the house that I used to mess around on, and I also started to write poetry from the age of about 8 – eventually I mashed the two together and wrote my first (pretty awful) song.
 
MB: You recently released your first EP ‘Fools’ which was independently released, how was the recording and writing process like for it? 
LA: It was alot of fun but also a huge learning curve. Having never done anything like this before, it was great for me to have the time to take things slowly and deal with all the mistakes I made along the way! The EP is kind of representative of my teenage life so far, so the writing process was very spread out which was lovely.
 
MB: Several people have told you to audition for talent shows, but you’ve chosen what people call the “hard way”, what would you say is the hardest part about going down this route and what is the best part about it?
LA: The hardest part for me is juggling music and school! I’m in my final year of A Levels and have to take a lot of time off for shows/recording, which I love doing, but my grades have obviously suffered a bit! The best part is that I have total creative control, and I get to take lots of people on a slow (but fun) journey with me. My favourite bit is that I get to talk and say thank you to all the people that support what I do, which I think you’re less able to do with the overnight fame people receive from a talent show.
 
MB: You’ll be playing your first festival in March, which happens to be the popular SXSW in Texas. That must be really exciting for you! Is this the first time playing in the U.S. and if so are you planning on coming back to the States anytime after that?
LA: Yes, I’m so excited! Couldn’t believe they asked me! Feel so privileged to be on the same line-up as some of my favourite bands. It will be my first time playing in the U.S. and I’m hoping to come back as soon as possible – will be a lot easier once I’ve finished school! Maybe even a U.S. tour? That would be amazing.

MB: 
What song do you like playing live the most and which song means the most to you?
LA: I’m going to kill two birds with one stone here, because the answer is the same for both! There’s a song called “Wonder” from my EP, which is probably the most personal one I’ve ever written. I always save it until last in my set because I love singing it and there’s alot of emotion/power in it, always struggle not to cry though!
 
MB: Have you written any new songs yet? And will there be an album in the near future, if so can you tell us a bit about what we can expect?
LA: Yep! Already started writing for my next release and looking forward to properly getting back into writing again, as its the aspect of music I enjoy the most. There probably won’t be an album for at least another year, but there’ll definitely be another EP in the near future. My writing is developing all the time and I’m still very much finding my own sound, but ‘Fools’ EP is definitely heading in the right direction for me and I’d like to build on that. Will be interesting to see where things go!
 
MB: What does music mean to you?
LA: It’s a horrible cliche but it really does mean the world (I hate myself for saying that too). Something as simple as one song or an album, can help people through hard times and that’s so powerful. It has the ability to constantly change my mood, and I think our planet would be a lot less interesting without it. I just love it.
 
MB: Who or what are your main inspirations?
LA: I grew up listening to whatever my mum would play on long car journeys – bands such as Stereophonics, Coldplay, and the Red Hot Chilli Peppers were my first main influences musically. More recently I’ve been heavily inspired by artists such as Ellie Goulding, Bon Iver, Marina & The Diamonds, and Daughter.

Fun Questions:
MB: What is something on your Bucket List?
LA: I’m desperate to skydive! I feel like that’s too obvious though. I’m desperate to skydive.. dressed as a giant bumble bee? Maybe?
 
MB: If you could be anyone for a day or be inside someone’s mind for a day, who would it be?
LA: I think being inside Paris Hilton’s mind would be pretty entertaining!

MB: Lastly, thank you so much for doing this interview and is there anything you’d like to say to your fans?
LA: Thank you for having me! I’d like to give a big virtual hug to everyone that’s supported me so far, and I can’t wait for us all to (hopefully) move on to even bigger and better things.
Lauren’s video for her song “Fools”:
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