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INsiders Guide: Exclusive Interview with Los Angeles Based Artist Anie Delgado

Email: neill@outloudculture.com

Socials: @neillfrazer

Anie Delgado is a Cuban-American artist and songwriter. Born in Miami, Florida, she grew up in Melbourne, FL and now resides in Los Angeles. Enjoying a colorful childhood with a dichotomy of culture and music, Delgado grew up immersed in her Cuban-heritage by way of dominos, late-night dancing, and blaring traditional Cuban music in the Florida Keys. Upon receiving her first guitar in 4th grade, she spent her adolescence writing songs and later moved to NYC to study at The American Musical and Dramatic Academy.

As an exceptional multidisciplinary artist inspired by the diversity of New York’s music scene, Delgado joined an experimental rock band and gigged with them until she decided to leave the band to pursue a solo career. Having moved to Los Angeles in 2018, she has since exploded into her very own realm of alternative pop. Upon the success of her first single “Galaxy”, Delgado has continued to evolve exponentially as an artist and is now back with her highly anticipated EP You Ruined Forever. 

Produced alongside industry newcomers George Gleeson, Gary Dillon, Caziel and Harry Egan, this six-track offering takes a more confrontational direction to its predecessors. You Ruined Forever is a self-confessed breakup album about healing, despite lacking closure. Delgado confides, “The EP is called You Ruined Forever because when I broke up with this person, they shifted the narrative and made me the villain even though I left the relationship because it wasn’t healthy, due to infidelity and personal growth that was needed on his part.” As Delgado takes back her narrative with the determination she displays so brightly, her next release explores breaking up with someone before you’ve fallen out of love, because it’s ultimately the right thing for you. 

She continues, “Although the EP has a lot of tones of resentment and nostalgia and clinging to the past, the journey of the EP is that these relationships are what make us. I felt the need to release this project because this relationship shaped my 20s and who I am as a person.” Inspired by the likes of Taylor Swift, Joni Mitchell, and Phoebe Bridgers, she found nostalgia in the streets of NYC. Taking perspectives and personality and pouring them deeply into her EP, Delgado’s echoic vocal energy rises above warming melodies and tender rhythms that exemplify her sublime musicality. Delgado’s worldly wisdom shapes her chronicles in a truly unparalleled way, as she brings the authenticity of her inner journey to the ears of many. 

Her single “Dancing While the World is on Fire” was featured in Billboard and celebrated for raising awareness and funds for a youth climate change activism group called Zero Hour. She also donated all of her NYC performance revenue to the Brooklyn Pride Center and performed for the Sunrise Movement to raise money for climate change activism. With streaming numbers hitting the hundreds of thousands, Anie Delgado proves that there really are no limits to her capability.

Anie, welcome to OLC! You’ve just released your new EP, ‘You Ruined Forever’, what can people expect from this EP and what do you hope they takeaway from it?

I hope that listeners take away this message: healing is sometimes messy and starting over is scary, but staying in a situation that no longer serves you will cause you to shrink yourself and lose yourself. There’s nothing scarier than staring at a blank page and totally starting over but there’s also nothing more exciting than getting the opportunity to find and fall in love with yourself again. Forgive yourself for the mistakes because there are not really mistakes, just chapters closed in the overall story of your life.

What’s the meaning behind the title of the EP?

When I broke up with my first love I was still very much in love with him, yet I got all of the blame for the relationship ending. Reclaiming the narrative is a big theme in the EP and “You Ruined Forever” is me reclaiming the narrative and saying no hey you did this.

How would you describe your sound? 

Confrontational pop with etherial and textured production and diverse influence.

Can we expect any videos for the songs and anything you can tell us about?

Yes! There’s a video out for Indie Bands + Cigarettes. Maybe look out for some live shows next year.

So lets talk about your musical past, how did you develop your passion for music and who was your biggest inspiration?

Lucky for me, my parents always played really good music in the house. My dad’s alarm clock every day was Fleetwood Mac Dreams. It would ring throughout the house. My dad was also really into really cool rock bands from the 70s like Led Zeppelin and Pink Floyd and he even has a prog rock era where he was really into Yes. My mom is a disco queen. I would constantly be listening to Abba with her. When I was 8 or 9 I saw the remake of Freaky Friday and was obsessed with being in a band. I didn’t have any friends that were interested though so I got my first guitar and started learning covers. When I was like 12 I discovered Taylor Swift and I was like wow you can write your own songs?! And I’ve been addicted to songwriting ever since. 

I’d say Taylor has to be my biggest inspiration because she introduced me to songwriting and I feel like in many ways I’ve grown up alongside her albums. Even to date, I so admire how she can write about such a broad range of topics. It makes me feel challenged to go beyond the breakup song. Also, in discovering her and being obsessed with lyrics and storytelling in songs, I’ve discovered so many other incredible songwriters I admire like of course the greats: Carly Simon, Carol King, Joni Mitchell, Patti Smith, and some contemporaries like Phoebe Bridgers, Lucy Dacus.

What motivates you most to write a new song? Do you like to write about your own personal experiences? 

I do love to write about personal experiences but I also just like to write. I went to school for acting actually, so sometimes if I don’t have a song that I’m burning to write about my own experience, I like to think of an interesting emotion and fill in the details of the situation and character to finish the song and often times I’m able to connect to it myself. That’s what I love about songwriting. It’s so universal. I have this record I made coming out sometime next year that was like that. It started out as an EDM record that I was following a prompt for and now it reminds me a lot about how I feel about my fiancé. 

Do you remember the very first song you ever wrote and what it was about?

This is so cringy but the first one I remember is about this guy I was seeing in 9th grade, but he never seemed to want to be seen in public with me and he came to my sweet 16 and acted like an idiot, so I wrote this song rhyming his name with the word “dick” and posted it on Facebook lol. I’m not too proud of that one and I definitely wrote songs before that but this was the most memorable early on one for sure.

I want to talk about your single “Dancing While the World is on Fire”, love the song by the way, it was also was featured in Billboard and celebrated for raising awareness and funds for a youth climate change activism group called Zero Hour. Can you tell me a bit about that and why it’s so important to you? 

Thank you. I feel really lucky that this is usually people’s favorite songs because it’s an issue that weighs so heavily on me and many others in my generation. I was in a session with the producer of that song in 2020 after the first major COVID wave and we were just lamenting on the state of the world. Things felt so unsure and there were so many big issues it felt like our generation had to tackle like COVID, police brutality (it was right around the time of the George Floyd tragedy — may he rest in power), and climate change. And was I telling Sam the producer about how it’s like so hard to know how to be your best person in the world today. Where do we start to make the change? One of the examples although silly considering the huge issues I just mentioned was like I wanted to support restaurants that were experiencing financial uncertainty in the pandemic but I was stressed about all the waste that was creating. Basically, I was just spiraling. Like how can we handle all of these issues that are so urgent when we can’t even organize and get together in person to do it. Anyways, I found some solace in social media. I saw people online connecting to solve some of these problems like one of my favorite TikTok’s GenZforChange. I met the founders of the organization Zero Hour online that just blew me away with how much they were doing as youth activists. This all gave me faith that as a generation and even inter-generationally we’d figure it out. Basically the song is a mantra like one step in front of the other the world keeps spinning and as long as it keeps spinning I trust myself and my peers to be working to make it a better place. I usually walk the line between optimism and cynicism. When I went to release the song, I thought it would be a waste to not try and tie some action into it, so I asked Zero Hour if I could donate part of my streaming revenue to them. I also had one of their founders and now a friend Jamie Margolin on my IG live to talk about her climate change activism. She wrote this great book that makes activism so much more approachable. Now I feel empowered to do a little every day. I also had Zangee Artis on who is a co-founder of Zero Hour who educated my fans on The Green New Deal and also a sustainability expert Shane Coopersmith who talked about how you can make little changes in your life to reduce the waste. It’s been great creating a network of people who care deeply about this like I do.

Where is your favourite place to perform and what makes it special to you?

The Bowery Electric in NYC. I used to play there a lot when I barely had a music project going when I lived in NYC. I would go and try out new songs there before I even had a song out. It’s also a really cozy venue. I love that it’s kinda underground. Their customer base loves indie music too.

What are your plans for Christmas and New Years Eve?

I’m Cuban and my fiancé is Mexican for Christmas eve is big for us. We’re going to spend Christmas Eve with his grandma and family here in LA and fly a red eye to Florida to be with my family for Christmas Day. I’m really excited because I haven’t gotten to be with my family for a holiday since I moved to LA about four years ago. We don’t have plans yet for New Years but honestly I hate going out on those types of holidays so my friends and I normally throw a house party so we can all stay put! 

http://www.instagram.com/anie_delgado

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What do you think?

Written by Neill Frazer

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