From The Start: Meeting Liz Lokre
Liz Lokre is a Toronto based vocalist who has worked extensively with OVO musical director Adrian X and their latest collaboration ‘Fire’ is out now. Liz Lokre’s soulful vocals sit perfectly over choice electronic beats on this one and we talked to her to hear all about it and her career so far as well as having an exclusive link to her new material.
Your latest EP ‘Fire’ is out now. Can you tell us a bit about the tracks on it and their creation?
‘Fire’ brings new beginnings. In a time where resilience is more necessary than ever, there is strength to draw from the embodiment of this element. This project explores themes of healing, purpose, and exploration of identity.
Who did you work with on the tracks?
The tracks were written by myself, Adrian X & Ryan Ashley and mixed by Michael Freeman.
Have you got any plans for a full length album or a collection with all these elements on them?
I’m planning to leave the elemental projects in 2020. My debut full length, which is well on its way, will be all new tracks next year.
Have you been working on any other new music recently?
Lots of new music ready to drop in 2021. It’s been a really creative and collaborative time for me… I’m producing more of my own stuff on Ableton these days too…which feels good!
Your music has a big electronic music feel to it, do you always envisage putting your soulful vocals over the top of music like that?
To be honest the upbeat electronic vibe is a newer extension of my sound. I really tried to tap into the characteristics ‘Fire’ on this project which felt kind of experimental. I can promise the vocal will always be soulful but it won’t always be over electronic moods.
What other music have you put out in the past that you can tell us about?
This year has been all about elemental projects for me. I started the year with EARTH, then moved onto WATER, and now it’s culminating with FIRE. The concept came from the idea that we’re all searching for balance. There’s so much to learn from the natural world and that’s what I tried to embody with this trilogy.
Who are your biggest influences as a vocalist?
Alicia Keys, Sade, Amel Larrieux. I’ll always sing their praises.
What was your musical upbringing like?
My dad booked live entertainment in Dublin, so he’s always known about the business side of things. My mom was an Indian dancer, singer and performer in Trinidad for many years. Her mother (my grandmother) was famous for her contribution to the arts in Trinidad as well. There’s definitely a rich lineage in the arts to draw inspiration from.
You have worked extensively with Adrian X. How did you first start working together and what has the experience and highlights been?
It’s hard to find people in this industry that will stick by you no matter what. We’ve been working together for years and it’s amazing to see how both of our projects have grown since the beginning. We met through my vocal coach, Brandon Brophy here in Toronto. I’d say the highlights have been our trips to London where we’ve met some of the best collaborators and played shows for hundreds of people.
Who else would you love to work with in the future?
I met Alicia Keys at a Grammy party this year… next time we link will be at the studio. Definitely have dreams of working with MIA as well. More badass women in the studio please & thanx.
What music have you been listening to and enjoying recently?
My girl VIAA just put out a track called ‘Animal Style’ that I can’t stop listening to. If I’m being honest a lot of instrumental and meditative vibes that just give me space to think and breathe deeper. The world is crazy… but I’m grateful that music provides a space to process all that.
What have been some of the highlights of your career been so far?
Last year I wrote a song for a film, that opened my mind to the possibility of scoring something one day. Also thinking about every opportunity I’ve had to play shows for a crowd of people. Those moments seem so much more valuable to me now. I can’t wait to get back on stage… there’s nothing better than feeling the energy shift in a room when the beat drops.