Lisa Remar creates a space with her music that is honest and comforting.
Quivers find their way through you when Lisa Remar opens up her latest EP “Still Good.” We know that word sounds silly but there really isn’t another way to describe the frisson that occurs. It’s like suddenly you're on a different planet and then “Halfway To Nowhere” starts playing and nothing is real. As you move deeper into the eight tracks of “Still Good” you find this calming peace that makes you feel like you can cope with the craziness of this world.
This NYC/LA-based artist makes soft pop music that is filled with emotional lyrics and dream-pop beats. When you watch her visuals you quickly notice the Japanese setting that Remar proudly incorporates. During this interview, we ask her if she plans to continue incorporate the culture into her art and she replies with, “I am Japanese therefore I am part of the culture.” Take a look at what Lisa Remar has to say about her work, the culture, and making music during a pandemic.
Still Good is the latest release for you this year. What can you share about the general themes and inspiration behind this lovely collection of songs?
When people ask me this question in person and I’m feeling lazy I usually just say it’s sad girl music and leave it up to them to decide but I realized the other day that I actually felt really happy while writing these songs, they just happen to be about experiences that evoke melancholia I suppose. So I actually don’t know but I’ve been told it’s nice to listen to whilst driving alone with no traffic.
Tell us a little bit about your background and why you got into music in the first place.
Listening to music and writing songs has always served as a coping mechanism. Looking back, making songs felt like the only way I was able to express myself or process my feelings without judgment, and in many ways, this sentiment still applies. I’ve definitely gotten better at articulating my emotions but nothing quite compares to the rush of release I experience when I turn these deep feelings into song.
If you had to pick one song from Still Good that you felt came out so naturally which one would it be and why? (Sorry we know that’s like choosing a favorite child.
It’s not really like choosing a favorite child only because they were all pretty difficult to birth (sorry for the graphic analogy).
How was it filming “Fell Into” in Japan? Were there any special moments during that trip that you still think about often?
It was important for me to shoot a music video that didn’t exploit the landscape but just so happened to be shot in Tokyo. So I reached out to my friend in Tokyo who introduced me to the director and the three of us came up with a simple treatment. With the help of the tremendous crew, we were able to source an incredible cast and shoot at a few really cool locations all around Tokyo. The video introduced me to new friends and future collaborators and these encounters allowed me to gain more insight into the city through different perspectives.
Do you plan to continue incorporating Japanese culture into your art?
I am Japanese therefore I am a part of the Japanese culture.
Do you have a strategy for your music career or are you taking it day by day?
The strategy is to continue making music because I love doing it.
I'm sure the reactions to Still Good have been amazing. Was there one in particular that made you super happy?
This question makes me a bit giddy.
Who are the musical icons you look up to?
There are too many to name so I’ll just say - I look up to myself, I’m proud of myself
What has it been like creating and releasing music during a pandemic?
I’ve been pushing myself creatively and making a lot of music, but on the other hand, it’s hard to come to terms with the fact that I can’t perform live and interact with my fans in real-time. Livestreams are great, but nothing replaces that genuine human-to-human connection.
Any plans for a tour once the live entertainment industry opens back up again?
Lastly, if there was one artist you would like to hang out with (dead or alive) who would they be and why?
What if she’s a cartoon? Punk NANA - duh