THE ROOFTOP: You released your second album ‘Oh No’ a little over a year ago. Looking back, what’s your favorite thing about it?
JESSY LANZA: Looking back on ‘Oh No’ helps me put the last 2 years of my life into perspective. When we, Jeremy Greenspan and I, were making ‘Oh No’, I was feeling out of sorts and now two years later I still feel out of sorts, but I was able to do a lot while feeling that way, like touring and all of that for basically the last two years straight. That makes me feel like I can do a lot more than I thought I was capable of and that's important to push through feeling shitty because its intensity is usually temporary.
"Listening to other people’s music all the time is the driving force behind what I do." –Jessy Lanza
And what would you change?
I don’t want to think about the past really, it makes me feel crazy and I think about it too much already.
Do you feel closer to Aaliyah or Grimes?
I would rather not pick sides because it reminds me of competitive sports. Being a spectator is fine, but I've never enjoyed being a participant.
I love your 2 albums and also have a weakness for your collaboration with Morgan Geist, ’The Galleria’, which has this straight 80’s electro vibe. Did you learn anything cool working with Morgan?
I really like The Galleria project, too. Working with Morgan is great because he’s an incredible songwriter. When I first heard the demo of ‘Mezzanine’, I connected with the song so much I felt like I had to sing it. Thankfully that worked out.
Jessy Lanza 'I Talk BB'
You’ll be playing a DJ set on The Rooftop. As a musician, singer, songwriter, producer and composer, what’s your relationship with DJing?
The only way I feel inspired to make new music is either by getting new gear or hearing a song that I want to learn or sample, so listening to other people’s music all the time is the driving force behind what I do as a musician. I assume DJ’s feel the same way.
As an artist, what does ‘I love you’ mean to you?
In my songs I throw "I love you" around a lot. Rejection is a recurring theme for me when I’m making music, so hearing "I love you" (or not hearing "I love you") plays a big part in whether I’m going to make something. Usually not hearing "I love you" is better for me if I want to get something done.
Friday, September 8th, The Rooftop presents Jessy Lanza (DJ set)
Cooper Saver & Jen Ferrer | 9pm | The Standard, Downtown LA
Lead photo by Hollie Pocsai