Ivy Layne spent her pre-teen years in France soaking up the music of Prince and Michael Jackson from her parents, and knew she wanted to sing from a young age. Taking inspiration from iconic artists Madonna and Gwen Stefani she took the plunge and moved to New York in DATE where, focusing on making her dream real, she honed her own chart-friendly fusion EDM sound.
Layne has recently burst into the music industry with her debut single ‘One You Love’ and her subsequent E.P. ‘In Time’. Her electro-pop fuses Caribbean rhythms with European funk to create infectious global dance anthems – her single with Popcaan is the perfect example of her sound.
With tours and gigs, a debut album and music videos on the way, you can expect to see her in the charts before long. With her real-life and relatable lyrics, rhythmic ballads and up-all-night dance anthems there is something for everyone. ‘In Time’ is just in time to soundtrack summer – if you don’t know Ivy Layne already, you will by the end of 2017.
We caught up with her to talk about her influences, writing process and collaborations.
How would you describe your music?
I can’t really describe my music but I let my fans and others describe my sound. It depends where you live, but the most common description is a fusion of European Funk and Caribbean rhythm. It’s fun music.
What can we expect from an Ivy Layne live show?
You can expect a lot of energy, a lot of dancing, and a lot of colors.
How do you approach writing songs? Do you write alone or do you prefer to collaborate?
I let it happen organically, I usually sit down with the producer and writer and I tell them about my inspiration and what’s been in my mind. I always have lyrics and I’m writing notes every day. I’ll take a look at them and share with the team. It’s no secret that I am a big fan of Prince, Michael Jackson and Gwen Stefani so inadvertently I am going to be influenced by them. I don’t have a preference about collaboration or writing alone. Sometimes when I am in the moment alone and some thoughts come to mind, I always write it down. Sometimes when you are with the team, it’s a formulated process.
What emotions do you intend to evoke in listeners?
I don’t intend to evoke any emotions particularly, but as an artist, my intent is to make you feel nostalgic, sad, upset, happy, ecstasy. If I can get a reaction out of you, I am doing my job.
How does a day in the studio usually work?
What inspired me the most to create this EP and launching whole lane of Caribbean rhythm and European funk fusion is diversity. Diversity and inclusion are the perfect way to get along and understand each other. I believe it was a no brainer to combine both sounds from me growing up in Europe and listening to European funk with the fact that my whole team is from the Caribbean. They introduced to me to the different sounds of the islands such as dance hall, soca and kompa. The melody and rhythm are too infectious for me not to be inspired. When I sat down with the producer and writers, I shared my inspiration and I talked about stories or relationships that have affected me. You can’t force the process, you have to let it happen organically and that’s what we did. The producer started to combine reggae music with some EDM sound and we realized that we had created a unique sound.
How did the collaboration with Popcaan come about?
I am so blessed that Popcaan decided to jump on “One You Love” because Popcaan is the hottest reggae artist out right now. I have always been a big fan, and he took time from touring the world with Drake to do this record with me. I don’t have the words to describe how blessed and happy I am.
Are there any more collaborations in the pipeline?
Of course! I will be working on the album soon and I know for sure that there will be more collaborations that won’t disappoint.
What are your plans over the next few months in terms of releases and gigging?
I’ll be doing radio promo, meeting a few producers, doing some few shows around the world before I settle down to record my first album.
When can we expect an album?
Soon, within this year for sure. I am already getting calls from a lot of producers and artists who want to collaborate. It’s always rewarding to get calls from your peers that want to do a song with you. As a new artist, I am blessed.
Where do you see yourself as an artist in a year?
I see myself as evolving and getting better. I live life day by day, my goal is to be better than yesterday.
Stay connected with Ivy for tour dates and releases:
Words by: Daniel Hole