Lizzy Lehman of Indie-Pop Band ‘Carry Illinois’ on Coming Out and Rising Above

Carry Illinois, the Austin-based indie-pop band founded and fronted by Lizzy Lehman, has released “Shameful Feeling”,  the new single from their EP, Garage Sale, produced by John Vanderslice and released in May 2017.

AfterEllen had the opportunity to catch up with frontwoman Lizzy Lehman for a brief interview to find out more about the inspiration behind the music. Lehman states that the song is “about the journey of coming out of hiding, rising above painful adolescent memories, and learning to shut out fears and self-doubt.”

After their bandmate’s suicide, Carry Illinois went on to craft songs about survival and acceptance, and the release of the new music video, “Shameful Feeling,” produced and created by Trevor Wiggins, speaks to that experience.

‘Shameful Feeling’ depicts the journey of a strong but struggling heart seeking to relieve other hearts of the weight of daily mental and physical battles. Has being gay shaped the direction of your music? 

Lizzy Lehman: Being gay has shaped the direction of my music itself because I have finally decided to sing my truth and share my experience as a plus-sized gay woman. I used to write about experiences outside my own, but have since embraced the worth of sharing my own . Over the past few years I have found a lot of pride in expressing who I am and what it is like to live outside of the social norm. This has become so important to me and I strive to continue to write and perform songs anchored by complete honesty and transparency about who I am and how I experience life.

AE: What is your advice to young lesbians who aren’t out yet?

LL: Know that it does indeed get better and that you are incredibly awesome just the way you are. Don’t be afraid of the feelings you have about who you are, because you are brilliant and amazing and these feelings are absolutely ok. Make sure that you surround yourself with people you love and that love you back. Don’t waste your time and energy listening to the haters, they don’t matter! Most importantly be proud and don’t forget to love yourself!

AE: Do you have any advice to young lesbian/bi readers out there who are aspiring musicians? 

LL: Be who you are and don’t be afraid to let your true colors shine. Passionately sing about your truth and don’t be scared to let people know what a strong and incredible person you are!

AE: Who is your biggest influence? 

LL: My biggest songwriting influence is Carole King. My biggest current musical influence is Lizzo! She is an incredible body positive musician who is slaying the game and putting out music that is all about self-love, positivity, shaking off the haters, and being a boss. 

For upcoming shows and to learn more about the band, visit their website.

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