sTEELE INTERVIEWS: singer-songwriter Lenka

Australian-born Lenka sings sweet and upbeat pop songs. She’s based in Los Angeles and her second solo album Two is currently available. Lenka tours this month.

I recently asked the singer-songwriter a few questions.

Amy Steele: How did you become a host of a television program in Australia?

Lenka: I had been an actor in Sydney for quite a few years but was studying at art college and starting to explore music. They asked me to audition and i thought it would be a fun, easy “bread-and-butter” job, which it was! We did comic skits in between the cartoons…

Amy Steele: Why did you leave acting to become a singer?

Lenka: I wanted to do something more creatively fulfilling, where i had more control over the content. And of course, i adore music and fell in love with the feeling of singing.

Amy Steele: What is different and similar about acting and performing as a singer?

Lenka: I feel like they’re fairly similar; both are performing, both are a heightened reality. But the big difference is, the character I’m now playing is myself!

Amy Steele: Who are you listening to?

Lenka: I’m loving Lykke Li’s new album and old $2 records we buy on the street.

Amy Steele: What kind of vocal training did you have if any?

Lenka: I took three lessons with an amazing vocal coach in LA to learn how to warm up and preserve my voice. I don’t like the sound of a trained voice though, so that’s all I’ve done.

Amy Steele: Did you get discovered in Australia or had you already moved to Los Angeles?

Lenka: I came to Los Angeles to tour with a band i was in, Decoder Ring, and then started doing solo music over here. So it’s really all happened in America for me.

Amy Steele: Who are your greatest musical influences?

Lenka: Old Jazz singers, Bjork, Fiona Apple, Goldfrapp.

Amy Steele: How do you like making videos? With your acting background how does that affect putting together a video?

Lenka: I love it! Gives me a chance to indulge in performing for cameras again. I’m glad to have had all that experience, I think it makes it a lot easier for me now…

Amy Steele: What do you like best about singing?

Lenka: The sensation of the release of emotion through melody and vibration.

Amy Steele: Do you find any challenges as a woman in the business?

Lenka: No not really, I’ve felt great respect and camaraderie as a woman.

Amy Steele: The music industry has changed quite a bit. How does that change the way that you write, record and perform?

Lenka: It’s become very internet-community based. Very immediate. That’s both good and bad I feel. Some of the mystique and anticipation has gone with this whole YouTube world, but then again, the way fans can be involved is absolutely amazing.

LENKA TOUR DATES:

6/10 New York, NY Bowery Ballroom

6/11 Philadelphia, PA North Star

6/12 Washington, DC DC9

6/14 Columbus, OH Basement

6/16 Pontiac, MI Crofoot Ballroom

6/17 Chicago, IL Subterranean

6/19 Minneapolis, MN 7th Street

6/29 BostonCafé 939

purchase album at Amazon: Two

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