Episode 218: Lucy Dacus

“Thumbs”


Lucy Dacus is a singer and songwriter from Richmond, Virginia. She put out her first album in 2016, and in 2018 she formed the band boygenius with Julien Baker and Phoebe Bridgers. In June 2021, she released her third album, Home Video, which includes the song “Thumbs.” The first time I heard it, I knew I wanted to ask Lucy about how and why she made it. After some COVID testing, we spoke in person here in Los Angeles, and she told me the story of how “Thumbs” took months and months to get right.

You can buy or stream “Thumbs” here.

Illustration by Carlos Lerma.

footnotes
Collin Pastore, co-producer
Jacob Blizard, guitarist
Ricardo Lagomasino, drummer
Trace Horse Studio

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Episode 217: Mustafa

“Air Forces”


Mustafa is a singer, songwriter, and poet from Toronto. He first gained national recognition in Canada for his poetry, and in 2016, he served on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Youth Advisory Council. Later, as a songwriter he contributed to the Grammy award-winning album Starboy by The Weeknd, and he’s written songs for Usher, Camila Cabello, and others. In May 2021, he released his own debut album, called When Smoke Rises, inspired by his experiences losing friends to inner-city violence. His album has been critically acclaimed, and was shortlisted for the Polaris Prize. I spoke to Mustafa about his song “Air Forces,” a track he made with his longtime collaborator, Grammy-winning producer Frank Dukes, plus Swedish artist Simon On The Moon, and Jamie xx.

You can buy or stream “Air Forces” here.

Illustration by Carlos Lerma.

footnotes
Regent Park, neighborhood
Remember Me, Toronto – short film
“The Age-Set” – Dinka people of Abyei
Mickey Newbury
Puffy L’Z
Nubia

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Episode 216: Lykke Li

“I Follow Rivers”

Lykke Li is a singer and songwriter from Sweden. She started releasing music in 2007, and for much of her career, she’s worked with producer Björn Yttling, who’s also a member of the Swedish band Peter Björn and John. Her second album, Wounded Rhymes, came out 10 years ago. It was named one of the best albums of 2011 by the New York Times, Pitchfork, The Guardian, and more, and it won the Swedish Grammy for Best Album. The song “I Follow Rivers” was the breakout hit from that album, and for this episode, Lykke and Bjorn break down how they made it, with help from co-writer Rick Nowels. I spoke to the two of them while they were at Björn’s studio, Ingrid Studios in Stockholm.

You can buy or stream “I Follow Rivers” here.

Illustration by Carlos Lerma.

footnotes
Lars Skoglund, drummer
John Eriksson, drummer
Wurlitzer, electric piano
Atlantis Studio
ABBA – “Dancing Queen”

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