Liza Anne brings her concert tour to Columbus tonight along with a Live From Studio A session at WCBE this afternoon.
In the latest installment of Music Journeys, Anne shares how her latest album evolved from her struggles with mental health, deep self reflection, and love.
Liza Anne grew up on a small island off the Georgia coast. Though she loved the atmosphere, she always felt apprehensive about her existence there. Her love of music came from a love of words rather than chords.
"Poetry was huge for me first in a certain way," Anne said. "Then I started to realize that music was just like poetry but moving in a quicker way. I wanted to be able to do the whole thing, not just write the poems and the melodies, but be able play it as well. I went to a summer camp for five weeks and took a guitar class there. I came back knowing a few chords and built off of that from there."
On her latest release, Fine But Dying, Anne sings about the panic disorder that nearly derailed her life a few years ago.
"It represents a complete sense of who I am," she said. "Rather than hinting at certain things, I sat across from myself and just really looked at her. It was a really out of body but completely embodying experience to just sit with all the things in my head and give them space to be the extreme of whatever they were. Because I always felt the need to be soft, quieter and controlled in some sense. I think I allowed myself loose almost. It was a very freeing experience for me."
"I wanted to declare that my art is a space for me to be whatever I am at any given moment,” Anne said. “I think this record was the home for me dealing with a lot of my panic disorder, falling in love, and all of these different weird things that are very simple and you hear about all the time, but I had yet to hear something about what I was going through. The room that's most secret and still kind of hurts when I sing it is I'm Tired, You're Lonely, a very sad one."
"I had to use my music as a mirror and give myself the space to make my record," she said. "I don't know exactly what woke me up to know that I needed to do that, but this is the clearest picture of who I am at this point. When you create out of that necessity - wanting to walk away a more understood version of yourself, you understand yourself better and people understand you better."
Anne hopes the words and music she's created provide others with a sense of freedom for their feelings and a recognition that they're not alone.
"I hope they walk away with a little more understanding and a patience toward their own self, because it's wild to have a brain and be alive and have a body to learn to live in every day," she said. "I just want them to feel valid, and that they're not the only people who feel certain extreme forms of emotion."
"I'll go wherever my brain takes me," she said. "I just will keep making my favorite record over and over again. It'll change because I'll change. I'm just excited. I want to write till I die."
Liza Anne mentioned poetry a couple times during our conversation, so it seems fitting to recall something she wrote shortly before the release of this new music.
This album came out of falling in love, not falling out of it. Loving another person does this strange thing to your mind – unearthing so much of what is easily buried when you’re alone or just experiencing shallow versions of being with another person. Love ends up acting like a mirror – the longer you stay in it, the clearer you’re able to view yourself and your intentions and your habits. There’s a softness and kindness you’re able to have for someone the longer you’re with them, and likewise, there’s a softness you grow to have towards yourself.
An excerpt from something Liza Anne wrote for ELLE Australia. The power of words, the power of music. The 24-year-old has both.