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In Conversation WithLily Denning

by Malvika Padin

Bold and true to herself, 19-year-old Lily Denning is a powerhouse of pop talent who makes music which reflects her individuality and the message of self-love.

A confident artist who seamlessly blends poetic lyricism with the upbeat tones of pop, Lily leads her life – and by extension, her music – by the wise words of her mother; “Comparison is the thief of joy.”

Denning is a beacon of hope for a generation fuelled by social media. Where not comparing yourself becomes a hard thing, a simple piece of advice has grown central to her music- whether on her first single ‘ Armageddon’ or latest ‘Me, Myself & I’ – she urges her listeners, “to be true to who you are. Don’t compare yourself; be honest with others and yourself.”

This track, in particular, is a lesson in self-empowerment and self-love. Lily says, “ I wanted this track to motivate everyone regardless of age and gender. Loving yourself is not an obnoxious or bad thing; it’s a very important trait to learn.”

Delving further into the inspiration behind the track, she says, “I wrote it when I had this realisation that I don’t need to chase after anyone. It’s about learning to rely on and love yourself, rather than someone else.”

Hailing from Kent, Lily was blessed with a family who never questioned her aspirations and allowed her to be herself. It’s, therefore, no surprise that she wants to be the same force of motivation to those who seek out her music.

Lily’s music seems to come from a very personal place, further driving forward the sense of individuality she holds so dear. Speaking about her approach to music-making, she says, “I wouldn’t actually be able to write about something that isn’t personal; if it hasn’t happened to me. Even if it’s about someone else, it always comes from my perspective.”

Continuing on the vein of individuality, she speaks on finding her unique sound and her growth as an artist. Lily says, “For my 18th birthday I got all this equipment so that I could produce myself. Being able to write and produce, doing as much as I can has been rewarding and memorable. Earlier I used to sound indie because I used live instruments. But now I’ve begun to use more synth and electronic, so it sounds more pop. I’d say the sound is now somewhere in between alternative and mainstream pop.”

Discussing her future, she mentions exciting plans for a new EP towards the end of the year, in addition to a few live shows. These are plans already set in motion, but she also has a bucket list of the most fun things imaginable. She exclaims that the top three on her list would include, “Dancing lesson with Rihanna, a pizza with Eminem, and a songwriting lesson with Lana Del Rey.”

Moving from seemingly silly bucket lists – and her very achievable dream of performing at the O2 in Brighton – to things she has already achieved, we discuss her involvement with the Mahalo x DMLT track ‘So Cold’, which went to feature in the Top 10 Billboard Dance Chart.

Explaining how she ended up lending her vocals to the track which has racked up 10,000,000 streams, she says, “I wrote the song with two others, and we weren’t going to use it for anything. But I think Mahalo x DMLT got in touch and asked if they could remix it. It’s done really well, and it’s been quite interesting to enter a whole another genre.”
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