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The musical journey of singer, producer and songwriter Amy Kirkpatrick isn’t an unfamiliar one for a Canadian artist.
First gaining attention as a member of the electropop duo Data Romance in Vancouver, she shifted to Toronto to continue pursuing performance. From there, it was back to the West Coast, but down to Los Angeles where she became active in a number of roles in the centre of the worldwide music business. Among the artists that she collaborated with in the City of Angels was Viegel on the track Where Are You, which boasts 20 million-plus streams on YouTube.
Her voice also appears on the Crystal Method’s #1 Apple Music hit Ghost in the City and she has written with other EDM names such as Smarx and Smavvy, Andy Moor and Markus Shulz. Live gigs included tours with Kaskade, Modeselektor, Digitalism and others. Recently, she decided to come back home and set about working on new solo material and expanding a meditation/wellness concept.
Q: What made you decide to release Lifeline?
A: Coming back to Canada, I didn’t have the luxury of being in a different studio with a different group every day. So I learned Ableton (music production software) and it came pretty quickly after being in so many sessions for so many different genres and watching the process unfold. The first night I moved into my new place in Vancouver, I wrote Lifeline, and it’s the first thing I have ever done that really felt authentic to who I am as a solo artist. It felt great.
Q: So sample packs, more songwriting and more collaborating are all in your plans moving forward. You also are launching into the whole wellness business as well right?
A: Speaking with so many songwriters, producers and musicians from here and L.A., it seems everyone is so anxious, feeling down, and unable to work or create these days. I’ve been focusing on creating mental health and wellness tools for musicians and all creatives, and have been creating meditations and sleep sounds available for free through my company Little Shop Meditations. Using tools that have helped me over the years from touring to living in L.A., I’m also working on a calming ambient music for the same reason, to add some peace and healing to peoples lives.
I published four guided journals, through my wellness business Feel Well Company, which is now Vancouver-based, and 100 per cent of profits from the journals are donated to local youth shelters, as well as sending journals to youth spaces. Covenant House B.C. was the first recipient of journal donations last year.
On Dec. 10, she dropped her new solo track Lifeline. The quiet and pensive rumination on need and desire is a shift from the big drop anthems and represent the singer’s recent pandemic lockdown introspection.
Postmedia caught up with Kirkpatrick to find out what it’s like to leave the eternal sunshine of Southern California and return to the Wet Coast.
Q: How are you finding the return to your old stomping grounds after years of the 24/7 action of L.A.?
A: I actually came back right before COVID happened because I just had a feeling, an instinct, that it was time for a change. I can’t say how thankful I am that I got out when I did too. After spending time in Victoria, where I’m originally from, I returned to Vancouver and I’ve just been falling in love with the city all over again.
Q: After Data Romance ended, you pursued songwriting and production and that yielded gold and platinum results didn’t it?
A: That came from a Universal Music Group writing camp that I did in Europe, where I co-wrote a song for the Polish singer Roksana Wegiel, who goes by Roxie. This year, I received message that the song had gone platinum which, hopefully, will get me into more writing rooms and collaborations like that moving forward.
Q: I also see that you have released a number of royalty-free vocal sample packs for EDM producers and others to use for tracks. Why offer up anything for no money?
A: I’ve done about three of them so far, most recently for Cubase, and I really like doing them. It’s the exact opposite of songwriting, more like deconstructing songs and giving someone access to one of tools that they need to create anything they wanted. It’s really liberating after all the time you spend perfecting a song to just create without worries. It’s true that no royalties is different, but it’s becoming a great way to get your name out there which brings more business your way.