On a Safer Scene with Lane Moore

New York City singer, comedian and performer, Lane Moore has had a busy year. Her band, It Was Romance, released an awesome queer friendly music video for her song, “Hooking Up with Girls” that has since been featured in the Huffington Post and Billboard magazine. Her comedy show “Tinder Live” has been increasing in popularity in New York City. Moore has created a new model for aspiring musicians. As commentators and entertainers who connect with their audience at a person to person level.

Photo Credit: Ariana Anhalt

So what’s new in the world of Lane Moore?

Oh, man. A lot, always. It’s been a busy year. I released my music video for my second single, “Hooking Up With Girls,” which was an homage to Fiona Apple’s Criminal video, but with queer women in it, on NYLON Magazine. I write songs every day and I have since I was really little. There’s just a lot in there to get out. I’m working on strategy for the next record and picking what songs out of the like 300 I have to record for this next one and preparing for tour.

If someone gave me a pile of money and told me I could record 10 albums right now I gladly would. It always bothers me when I have all these songs I think are incredible and they’re not out in the world where people can hear them as fast as I’d like.

In addition to your music, you are a comedian, writer, and actress. Any other special skills our readers should know about? How do you balance it all? 

I’m really really great at singing impressions, I can sing like anyone. I’ve been doing that since I can remember. I did a video of some of the ones I do on Funny Or Die a few years back, but I haven’t found a major outlet to do anything with them yet, but I’m sure I will. It’s just so fun. I’m working on the balance thing.

I feel things very deeply and all those complicated emotions need somewhere to go. Making art is, for me, about finding a way to channel those difficult and at times way too intense to handle emotions into something better.

I think if you’re that kind of person, the more intense emotions you have, the more you’re inclined to never stop working. That’s a wonderful gift and also something that can really hurt you because no one can live like that all the time. I’m figuring it out. I’d love to be a more “normal” person in that sense.

Do you think it’s important for musicians to be vocal about social issues? What is your preferred medium for speaking out?

Nina Simone said something about how if you’re an artist you should be reflecting the times you live in, and I think that’s very true. I definitely do that a lot on Twitter I do it through my music too, in my own way. I might not be shouting traditional punk rock lyrics about it, but for me, if I’ve been through things no one is really talking about it, and I’m talking about it in my music, that is speaking out about social issues.

lanemoore5ariana-anhalt 

Your music video for “Hooking up with Girls” was a shot by shot recreation of Fiona Apples “Criminal” with a queer message. Has your choice to cast women as your love interests changed your public perception? How so? What was the process for putting the video together?

I won a GLAAD award earlier this year and people know I’m pretty open when it comes to dating. I do think people forget though, which I like actually. It’s nice for it to be known but also for it to not be the main thing people think about when they’re reading your writing or listening to your songs. It’s such a small part of my life, because, hi, workaholic.

Do you think there is anything in particular that can help create a safer and more inclusive music scene in general?

That’s such a tough one, isn’t it? I went to go see Letters To Cleo recently — Kay Hanley was my idol growing up, and in my first real band as a kid I played so many LTC covers. That was my demand when I joined the band: “We must play these LTC songs!” At the show, for this badass female-fronted band, there was this guy who was telling my friend she should smile because she didn’t know how lucky she was to see LTC or something. Like, what? Really? Then later, he started harassing me.

I’d like to think that at a show for a band with a strong frontwoman, that would in and of itself create a safer space, but it’s just not that simple. I hate the idea that anyone would be at one of my shows and that would happen to them. So much. I’d love to be one of those bands that people felt like they could report it to me, or shout something on stage, because I would definitely help that person in a second. The last thing I’d ever want is anyone getting messed with at one of my shows.

Are there any particular bands, musicians, and/or organizations you believe are making an effort to help the cause?

I know Safe Horizon in Brooklyn does incredible things, I just contributed a song to a benefit album for them. Joyful Heart is doing incredible things. I always try and support local women’s crisis shelters when I’m touring in different cities in whatever way I can.

What advice would you give to women who want to become a musician or start a band?

Do it. I’ve heard so many women who’ve been playing music for like 10 years saying they’re not “real” musicians yet. You are. You are. And if you’re like I was for a long time and you’re not finding the right people to play with yet, I just taught myself a ton of instruments and cut up drum loops and did it all myself. I didn’t let anything stop me, and nothing could. I’ve been making music since I could speak and I couldn’t wait. So neither should you! Be happy.

Are there any female alternative/rock artists you look up to in particular, and why?

Fiona Apple, obviously. She’s so vulnerable and raw and seems like she feels way too much all the time, all of which I’ve always related to in such a deep way. Her music has been my friend when no one else was. Nina Simone, you just feel everything when she sings, it’s deep and real and moving and untethered. I adore her. Stevie Nicks and her general magic are huge influences on me. Dolores from The Cranberries is huge for me, beyond. Selena, oh my god Selena. I’ve had a lifelong Selena obsession. I love music so much, man.

How have you changed personally since starting a band? What have you learned from the experience?

I started solo when I was maybe 7 or so and then formed bands in my teens, but it was really hard to find people to play with, so before that and even during, I was always writing and recording at home, always. Even with IWR, it took so long to find the right line-up and I went through different people and that’s always challenging because you just wanna have that core group so you can take over the world already.

But it’s not always that easy. That patience and that meticulousness and refusing to settle all paid off though. I love the people I have playing with me now. I have so many moments when I look over them and think, “I’ve waited so long to find you, thank you so much for existing.” I’m very, very grateful for them because I had to go through so much to find them.

What does It Was Romance have planned for the next year?

I want to play stadiums. I want everyone everywhere listening to our records. I want to tour the world playing for thousands or people who all feel sad, or happy, or lonely, or joyous, just all of those things, to feel them together, and leave feeling like life is magic.

I want my music to be what other artists music is for me, it’s my life raft, it’s my best friend, it’s my family, it’s my confidant, it’s my support, it’s my sanity, it’s my sanctuary. I’m going to be making music until I take my last breath and I want more than anything for all of the people who could love these songs and have them mean something to them to have access to them.

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Author: Kat Hamilton

I am a Cali born turned east coast punk princess. Writer, rocker and dog person. I identify as a "Pumpkin Spice Lesbian". If I could, all of my days would be foggy and my streets would be cobblestone. I love scary movies and penguins. Check out my band, Manic Pixi everywhere that music exists.

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