Your latest track ‘Miles’ is hauntingly emotive indie rock. It is quite a personal track for you, could you tell our readers a little about what it is about?
I wrote “Miles” for a friend who had fallen into a bout of major depression. Overnight, she became unrecognizable and threatened to take her own life. She couldn’t communicate or get out of bed. I’d never seen a human being shut down like that before, and I didn’t know how to help other than to write; she’s also a musician, so I hoped that maybe a song could get through to her (and, thankfully, it did). Those few days brought me into a closer friendship than I’d ever experienced and inspired me to get help for my own mental health shortcomings.
You’ve previously described your music as “high school emo music, grown up”. What were your influences when in high school? Do they still play a big part on your song writing now?
I was really into musical theatre, emo, and pop-rock music growing up. These three genres definitely play such an important role in my writing today; it’s dramatic and darkly expressive, yet displayed through pop-rock instrumentation.
Your voice is incredibly accomplished for such a young age. Was singing your first love?
Exactly. I don’t know where the love of it came from—it seems like I knew on some instinctual level from the day I became conscious/realized I was a human. The first distinct memory I have of expressing it was when I demanded that my mom to “get me an agent” so I could be Annie on broadway (which of course didn’t happen). But I knew that I wanted to “be a singer” years before that.
What led you to pursue being a singer-songwriter? Was it a passion of yours from an early age?
I remember insisting as an overly confident nine year old that when I was a famous singer, I wouldn’t write my own songs. I’ve found song books from when I was a kid, and the songs were, of course, terrible—I think my resistance to songwriting growing up was that I knew I was too young and uneducated to write well, so I thought, what’s the use? High school was when I started writing for my own enjoyment, and in college I started taking it seriously.
How do you pursue your own development as an artist? Do you constantly aim to challenge yourself?
Challenge isn’t the word I would use, because it’s easy for me to turn against myself in an unhealthy way. I just try to be fulfilled through creating, providing, and achieving clarity on any given day. Developing myself as an artist is a natural product of that.
Spritely is quite a collaborative project despite the song-writing being chiefly your own. You are a student of Popular Music at the University of Southern California; how has being a student on this course been beneficial to your development as a writer and performer?
Coming to this school was absolutely the key to me being a musician today, period. I’ve always had the passion and the latent talent, but never would have developed it if not for this stroke of fate. My entire future is indebted to the kind professors who saw something in me, and let me in to their prestigious school despite not being able to spell a C chord. The education, the focus, the passion, the collaboration and the inquisitive minds of my peers—it’s magic. I may have never gotten my Hogwarts letter, but this school comes pretty close.
What can we expect from Spritely in the near future?
More songs! Music videos! Spring 2017!
Is there anything else that you would like to add?Hmm… my other interests include cats & coffee. That pretty much covers it.
Spritely’s track ‘Miles’ is available to listen to via Soundcloud.