TiLLie’s power ballads will give you all the feels
Fresh off of her first tour ever, LA-based pop singer TiLLie’s songs are melody-driven, honest power ballads for every emotion. Galore sat down to talk with her about Warped Tour and her new music video for “Save Yourself,” check it out below and don’t forget to scroll down for exclusive photos!
So where did the name TiLLie come from?
My cat!! Authenticity is a super important quality to being an artist to me so when it came time to pick my name it was the only option that felt true to me. Plus, my cat is my bff and I’m really just trying to build her legacy.
Who are some of your musical influences and icons?
Number one spot goes to Shania Twain. I grew up listening to her and only learned to appreciate her more and more as I’ve gotten older. Not only is she a trailblazer as far as pushing the genre of country into the world of pop when her whole label said it was impossible, but also for being a voice for female empowerment so early on. Gwen Stefani is a close second. I like to think of myself as their baby if two women could defy science and procreate, which if any two women could do so it would be them, duh.
When did you first get involved in music, how has your skill set as a musician changed since then?
I started writing songs and playing guitar at 14. Saying my skill set has come a long way would be an understatement. Sometimes when I listen back to the GarageBand demos I made I’m like, “yo who the fuck let me keep going with this?!” haha. But music is my one true love and like anything worth having, I had to work and work and work at it. Only now, ten years later, do I feel like I’m finally starting to harness my full potential as a musician and I’ll never stop trying to grow what that potential could be.
You recently just went on Warped Tour, how was that? Pros and cons? Favorite cities?
Yes! Warped tour was fucking awesome. I actually had this really sad dream about how much I missed it last night. It was my first tour ever, which was equally exciting and terrifying. Exciting because it was a tour I grew up going to, and terrifying because several musicians told me it’d be the hardest tour I’ll ever do, which is a big feat for a first go. It was definitely exhausting because you go from 8am to 8PM (then add 3 hours of partying with the other bands) but it was worth every second of the hard work to meet and play in front of so many rad kids. I got to say houston really surprised me and brought the vibes. that was our biggest crowd plus my band and I got drunk and ate a bunch of sushi with my uncle after.
How would you describe your personal style?
Thrift-thirsty. The thirsty part comes from how thirsty thrifting makes me. I think it’s all the dust on the old clothes and shit haha. I started thrifting when I was about 14 or 15 and it’s been a huge part of developing my personal style. I love that it’s not like a normal store where the same 10 things are placed in front of your face. Thrift stores are full of diverse, unique pieces that allow you to pick exactly what speaks to you, which ties into my whole obsession with authenticity and honest self-expression. I also blame thrifting for my obsession with jackets, mainly pink children’s jackets…
What are some of your tour essentials?
Glitter, Halloween make-up sticks (I use them for my eyes), baby wipes (gotta keep it clean), plenty of outfit choices (never know how you’re gonna feel that day), red wine and weed.
If you could write a song with one person living or dead, who would it be? Why?
Fuck, these are so hard! I gotta say Paul McCartney because it all goes back to The Beatles for me. I had this moment as a teenager where I was super depressed, drawing on my bedroom floor listening to them, where I was like, “Wow, these guys have a song for every emotion. Sad, happy, love, anger, sex, etc.” And that’s when it hit me that I wanted to be able to write songs that made some kid alone in their bedroom feel like they were less alone in whatever feeling they were facing. It was their music that made me appreciate real, genuine songwriting so I think my heart would explode if I got to write with the person that gave me that pivotal inspiration.
What was the inspiration behind the video you just released for “Save Yourself”? What was your favorite part about filming?
I recently got out of an abusive relationship and before doing so, it took me a long time to face the reality of what I was in. “Save Yourself” is about facing the shit that scares you the most, which honestly for me was just admitting to myself that I had to break up with him and that the dream was dead. Breaking all of the props was my way of making it loud and clear that I wasn’t going to be a victim anymore. I’d like to pretend I’m super tough but breaking some of that shit was scary, especially the big mirrors, so it was so empowering to release that anger and overcome my fears at the same time. My favorite part had to be how therapeutic the whole thing was. I went in so hard that I was sore for days afterwards but it felt like my final release of all that toxicity that had been holding me down for months.
Where can we find your music?
Spotify, iTunes, and all that other shit that everything’s on! All my socials are under @whoistiLLie <3 keep on the lookout as the third part of the single trilogy will be out v soon!
Photography and interview by Jacqueline Kulla