Lilla Vargen In Conversation With FAULT Magazine

Lilla Vargen’s songwriting abilities have made her one of the most exciting emerging talents at the moment. Her recent track The lucky One managed to not only show off her prowess with the pen but also showcased her hypnotic powerhouse vocal. With so much to discuss, we caught up with Lilla Vargen to discuss her musical journey, her process and of course, her FAULTs.

The Lucky One is such an emotional song – is it ever daunting to leave so much of yourself on the page like that? 

I think by the time a song like this is written, recorded and released, it isn’t as hard to hear. In a way it’s therapeutic to me. I enjoy tackling difficult emotions with my music and hope that my lyrics and experiences will connect with someone listening. 

Do you ever feel emotionally drained from performing music which is laden with your own personal life experiences? 

Not really, it becomes a different thing when I perform live. It doesn’t make me sad or drained, if anything it makes me feel fulfilled and accomplished. Writing a song in your bedroom that you think nobody will hear, then performing it for an audience who know the words and want to talk to me after about how they have felt the same way in the past. 

What’s one word that would best describe your writing process and why? 

Chaotic! Probably because I don’t really have a set way of doing things, and I like that. Songwriting isn’t always straightforward and I think it’s good to not limit myself with a particular writing method.

When you’re in writing mode – do you like to take in all the inspiration around you or do you prefer to shut yourself off and see what flows? 

I prefer to shut myself off. I think the honesty in my music is because I do that. I really listen to myself and recognise what I want to say. Sometimes I find too much outside inspiration can be overwhelming. 

What would you say has been the most challenging musical hurdle you’ve had to overcome? 

I would say the industry in general. Unfortunately artists are faced with a lot of pressure and are forced into bad deals with publishers and labels, mostly because they need the money and don’t fully understand the gravity of agreeing to bad terms. I have had that experience and I know a lot of other artists who have too. My advice to anyone hoping to get into music or about to sign any deal is get a good lawyer! 

How would you say your upbringing in Ballymena influenced your musical journey – if at all? 

I think coming from Ballymena made me appreciate music. There was a music hall in Ballymena called The Flamingo. Roy Orbison performed there, as well as the Rolling Stones and lots of other acts. Knowing there was a history of music in the town made me curious and in a way made me want to explore the world more. I wanted to write music and just see what might happen. 

When you look back on your EPs, what would you say was the most emotionally taxing song to write? 

I would say Why Wait was the most emotionally taxing to write. I wasn’t overly happy in my life at the time and I’m so glad I wrote it. Being able to look back at those moments is very cathartic.

When are you most looking forward to this winter? 

I’m looking forward to releasing new music, and spending time with the people I love. I love Christmas and actually really enjoy winter too so I can’t wait! 

What’s the last song to make your cry?

Probably Mary by Big Thief. Just such a beautiful song. Pretty much love every single song of theirs and would love to see them live. 

What is your FAULT?    

I’m extremely self critical and sometimes think I could be kinder to myself.