VK Lynne - 10 Questions Music Interview
VK Lynne is a prolific songwriter who has worked on a variety of musical projects in various styles. As a blues/rock solo artist, VK has written and recorded three full-length CD’s of material: The Key of V, Black Halo, and Whiskey or Water (which was recorded in Denmark with producer James Thomas (Cher, Beth Hart) in 2008). She also created the critically acclaimed symphonic metal international recording project Vita Nova, which featured 13 artists from six different countries. VK then joined the progressive metal band ‘stOrk,’ and subsequently went on to front the modern rock band, The Spider Accomplice, which has released two award winning EPs and has toured with metal heavyweights, White Empress, and INSATIA.
As a personality within the music community, VK is known as one of the founders of Eve’s Apple, a global group of professional female metal singers. The group’s goal was to foster community and cooperation between women, and the group boasted 50 women from approximately 22 nations by the time it closed its doors. Eve’s Apple’s accomplishments included releasing a compilation CD, the proceeds of which were donated entirely to Shropshire Music Foundation, and two historic performances at Belgium’s Metal Female Voices Fest. For the first time, 20 women of different nationalities, bands, and styles performed together as a group and in duos and trios in a show of solidarity and unity. VK’s guitars are provided by Stagg/EMD music, and she uses Sennheiser microphones.
Was there something (an experience) or someone in your life that was the "catalyst" for you to start writing music? Tell us about it.
I sang from an early age to get my emotions out; you can rage and scream and cry in a song and no one gets hurt. Then I saw Melissa Etheridge play, and my whole perspective changed. I realized I could go deeper; I could write out my struggles and as a result, maybe help someone else who was feeling the same things. So I guess it's really my therapy.
Let's get this out of the way. What is the CRAZIEST thing that has ever happened to you in your music career?
Craziest? OK, so I won't mention names ( you'll understand why), but I had gone to see a friend's band and ran into the manager of a famous band that I really admire. The manager was also an acquaintance of mine, so we chatted and he suddenly handed me a stack of DVD's. I looked down at them and shrieked in shock- they were all porn! I said, "Dude, what the....???" He said that someone had given him a huge box of these as a gift, and so he was handing them out to everyone. Later on backstage, the lead singer of one of the other bands on the bill that night came out of his dressing room and said "There's all this porn in here! " I held up a DVD from my bag. He pointed and said, "You have porn, too! Why does everyone have porn back here?" It was the joke of the night. I think it all got left at the venue, so I can only imagine what the stagehands thought!
What has been the high point of your music path?
Singing in Belgium at Metal Female Voices Fest was a big one. Not just the concert but getting to spend the weekend with so many powerful, talented women in metal and hard rock was inspiring. It impacted the way I do everything in this business.
So, how do you approach songwriting or what is your creative process like?
When I write alone, I usually will hear a melody in my head, and then I'll sit down and start writing out the words and pick out notes on the guitar. When I write with my bandmate, Arno, I take his chord progressions and instrumental ideas and work my vocals into them. But many, many times, for me, a song starts with a poem. I write a lot, and the words are my foundation.
What do you see as the biggest challenge facing Indie Artists today? Or, if you could ask the music industry to change one thing, what would it be?
Control. With the advent of streaming, many people don't want to pay for music anymore. And with YouTube and other streaming services, why go to the bar to see a a band you can see on your laptop? Thus, the industry is bleeding money. So, because the industry is a business, it has to find ways to maximize profit, but doing that with something as mercurial as music, and more to the point, musicians, is a herculean task. Thus the "decision makers" are trying to exert a stricter-than-ever-before control of BOTH in an effort to quantify, qualify, package, and sell something that, by nature, is not amendable to any of it. I don't know what the answer is.
If you could share the stage with one other artist or band, who would it be and why?
There's so many, but I think at this moment I'd have to say Macklemore. He has taken on the industry in a real and tangible way, and, for all intents and purposes, won. And he did it while making music that is substantial, impactful, and creative. That's the kind of people I want to be around.
What are your rehearsals generally like? Or, how do you prepare for a live show?
Since my band, The Spider Accomplice, is a duo, we can rehearse anywhere, and we do. As long as we have two guitars, we can run through just about anything. But it's always good to get on our feet, plug in, and crank up the rock. So it depends on what kind of show we're preparing for.
Pick one song that was your greatest challenge to write. Tell us about it!
Sunday. It's the last song on my solo record, "Whiskey or Water." I was really digging into theory and progressions around that time, and I wanted it to be something different and beautiful. And even though I believe it is, I nearly break my hand every time I try to make the changes. I'm not a good enough guitarist to play my own tune! But, it's my favorite of my songs.
What's coming up in the future? The Spider Accomplice has new music coming throughout the year. We've made our brand from releasing music periodically instead of waiting to launch a big LP at once. So this year, we're excited to share some new ideas we've been working on.
Tell us where fans can access your music?
VK Lynn's “See the light” will be airing on National Indie Radio (WNIR) commencing December 1st through December 31st as part of BWH Music Group’s Holiday Radio Special. WNIR features the best independent artists in the world and is part of the highly selective and nationally renowned BWH Music Group platform. The Holiday Radio Special will feature original holiday songs as well as covers by exceptional independent artists. Station information can be found at www.wnir-radio.com