Well, let’s start talking a little bit about you. Who is Alice Brightsky?
Alice BrightSky is me, not a moniker but my actual name. I’m a singer-songwriter and I’ve been writing and performing on and off for over 20 years.
When music became and interest for you? Was it always present in your life?
As early as I can remember I was drawn to music. My mom was friends with a lot of jazz musicians so I was exposed at an early age and I grew up singing folk and rock songs in the car on long trips with my family. Once I got a guitar around age 12, I was throwing chords together and songwriting.
Your last record, called “Box of Me”, enchanted apreciators of folk and indie (including me). How was the production of this album?
Thanks for the kind words about the album. I’m glad you enjoy it. The production was done in a small basement studio in Brooklyn, NY and my producer and I just experimented with different sounds and ideas as they came to us on each song. The result is the record as you hear it now.
What kind of influences have you had in the composition of this record?
My influences span the gamut but this album was probably a mix of 60 and 70 folk heroes like Joan Baez, Nick Drake and Joni mitchell plus some indie rock songstresses like Liz Phair and Cat Power and Kristin Hersh who’s also really influenced my guitar playing..and I’m a big fan of the production on Bjork’s records so that definitely made it’s way in.
Well, as you know, Lana Del Rey Addiction is a Brazilian fandom. Have you ever been in Brazil? – If you didn’t, would visit it?
I have never been to Brazil but it’s definitely a place I’d love to visit. I love the Portuguese language and particularly the Brazilian brand of Portuguese is so hypnotic. And love me some Bossa Nova too, of course.
Now, let’s talk about your partnership with Del Rey. When did you met Lana? How was it? Is there a special motive for this collaboration in your song, Lover’s Fate?
Not to disappoint but my Lana history is fairly simple and short and void of any drama or intrigue or many notable moments really. But I’m happy to recant. I met Lana as Lizzy Grant in the 2006 Williamsburg Live Songwriting Contest. We formed a friendship as the competition progressed and a few months later, when I was struggling for the right sound in the backup vocals on Lover’s Fate, I realized that her ethereal voice would really do the trick. So I asked her to step in and she was happy to. That’s kind of it.
How was the relation in the studio?
It was one quick session in my producer’s studio. She nailed it and then was off to meet up with her lawyer or manager and I stayed to work through some other parts.
Do you remember if something funny happened in that time? Does Lana have some habit to be remembered?
Nothing particularly funny happened. I don’t have any special memories beyond just that it was nice of her to do and she laid down the track quickly and with ease.
Do you listen to her music? – If you do, have you listened to her last record, Ultraviolence? What did you think about this record?
I don’t tend to listen to albums anymore b/c I really like jumping between artists and songs randomly. I’m Pandora listener (I know most prefer Spotify but I’m still into P). I have a station that plays a lot of her stuff so, I listen to her when she pops up. I enjoy her music very much but I have only heard a few tunes off the new album. What I’ve heard so far is very cool, I like.
Did you have some recent contact with her?
No recent contact. We lost touch sometime around 2009. I had moved out of the city, met my husband and was growing a little removed from the NYC music scene. A few years later I got a call from a mutual friend letting me know she had performed on SNL so I did a quick google and like probably everyone who knew her when, smiled with a bit of pride because someone from our little songwriting contest actually broke out of obscurity and was going to be a raging mega-success.
Would you work with her again?
Re future collaborations.. she really just popped in that once to sing a little backup for a friend. So even if she weren’t famous and way way up in the stratosphere, I don’t think we would have necessarily done anything else together. And now that she is waaay up in the stratosphere, it’s even that much more unlikely so no, don’t hold your breath on that one.
Well, and finally, would you send us a picture of you? And if you have some picture with Del Rey, would you send us also? We want to show for our readers who Alice is and the beauty of your work!
Thanks for taking an interest in my music. I hope I’ve answered your questions and given you a little insight to my experience with the artist formerly known as Lizzy Grant. My recollection of her is just as a sweet, super nice person who had a lot of talent and beauty and lent a little bit of that to a track on my album for which I’m very grateful. I’ve attached a recent pic of me taken by the talented photographer Patrick Stevens Smith (please credit him) and one photo of Lizzy singing with me at a gig in Williamsburg Brooklyn back in 2006. – All the best, Alice.