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INTERVIEW: Lizanne Knott

“I believe we create our own path,” is a manifesto Lizanne Knott not only subscribes to but has actually experienced for the majority of her life. The Pennsylvania-bred singer-songwriter has overcome a challenging past to ascend to her current position as a multi-award-winning artist, poised to release her sixth album, Bones and Gravity, on October 4.

Knott’s experiences of a troubled childhood, being on her own at an early age and having a mutable life, are all transformed into a poignantly creative ─ and highly personal ─ exploration on her latest work. “Even when bad things happen, it’s how we react that puts us where we are,” Knott explains.

The collection indeed pulls at the listener’s heartstrings, exploring pain and disillusion, but still adding a dose of healing love and laughter to balance the equation. Helmed by Grammy Award-winning producer and engineer, Glenn Barratt ─ who first discovered Knott’s talents in her earliest days playing folk clubs ─ the record traverses a spectrum of emotions and sonic influences, ranging from the title track’s purity to driving rhythms on such songs as “Walk Away” to lyrical prowess on “Hurricane.”

We get to sit with the singer-songwriter to talk about her new single “Emmylou” and more!

Hi Lizanne, welcome to VENTS! How have you been?

I’ve been well thank you!

Can you talk to us more about your latest single “Emmylou”?

Emmylou is a song about a way I had been feeling, you know, it’s that feeling when you want to be somewhere other than where you are – but you know if you leave you will be hurting the people you love. It’s a song about choice and redemption for the things we sometimes do

Did any event in particular inspire you to write this song?

It’s a pretty constant theme in my life and not necessarily about one event

Any plans to release a video for the single?

Yes, I will have video out for a few of the songs

The single comes off your new album Bones and Gravity – what’s the story behind the title?

“Bones and Gravity” comes from the title track. It’s a song about loss and spirit, a longing for something to be freeing but knowing that gravity will always hold me down.

How was the recording and writing process?

I truthfully don’t have a writing process, songs just come to me and stay stuck in my head until I work them out, both a blessing and a curse! I love recording and the whole creative process. I’m fortunate to have a producer who gets me and an incredible group of players who can lock into any vibe I’m looking to create.

What role does Pennsylvania play in your music?

Pennsylvania is where my roots are, it’s a beautiful state with rolling countryside, mountains, great cities..but I don’t think it has influenced my writing. I’m inspired by so many things from all over the world.

What aspect of your life did you get to explore on this record?

I feel like this is the most personal record I’ve made, I wasn’t trying to get a point across and just went with the flow of my writing. Maybe too because a couple of the songs were recorded with me just sitting down with my guitar and playing them through, not intending them to be a final track. Sometimes you just capture a moment and that’s it.

Was it easy to deep dive into your personal (and some dark) corners? Well, it’s what writers do. It can be both painful and freeing and it’s just the human experience. We’re all spinning at breakneck speed on this ball we call earth and we all share so much of the same things

Where else did you find the inspiration for the songs and lyrics?

The inspiration comes to me from all over, I never really go out and look for it. I think I’m always writing in some way, in my head if not on paper.

Any plans to hit the road?

YES! Any booking agents out there looking?! I have an agent in the UK but book myself in the states. I’m determined to tour more of the US in 2020!

What else is happening next in Lizanne Knott’s world?

More music, maybe a book. I’m always striving to create a warm space for people to come to and find some respite from the craziness that is the world today. If that winds up being a little acoustic song than that’s okay with me.

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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