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WPGM Commentary: Ivory Layne On The Making Of Her New EP ‘Confetti’

I’m Ivory Layne and I’m not likening it to Rome, but my new EP Confetti was certainly not built in a day. This project took seven years to complete and is my definition of a “labor of love”. Because not only did I have to work to write it, I had to live to have something worth writing about.

All of these songs are lessons I’ve picked up along my journey from North Carolina to Tennessee, from Tennessee to London. And all of the life in between. They’re the bare bones answer to who am I, what do I want to say, and how do I want to say it?

Each of these tracks share a common thread of vulnerability, something I thought I was good at when I wrote alone. To sit with strangers and talk about things you’ve lived through, what you believe and why you believe it, feels terrifying but cathartic.

It opened my eyes to a deeper side of me, and it’s a method of writing I’ll carry into future sessions. I’m thankful to my fellow writers for providing such a safe space for me to be real. Because of them, I can say with confidence the Confetti EP paints an authentic self-portrait of yours truly.

Since it took so long to create, this EP’s got a few more origin stories than usual. For instance, “God Save The Queens” started top-to-bottom from scratch, just me, Jimmy Robbins, and Natalie Hemby throwing ideas against melodies in Nashville.

But “Lonely Hearts” was an idea I began back in 2014. I loved the chorus but couldn’t frame it right with verses. So I demo’d it and stowed it away for several years until revisiting it on a train ride to my session with Nick and Edd in the UK.

I thought there might still be something here and played the chorus for the guys on their upright piano. We began working off of that idea to get the song you hear today.

I hummed the beginnings of “December” cross-legged on my studio floor after moving house in Nashville, while “Confetti” was a title I’d wanted to write simply because I loved the phonetics. I’m grateful Bernie Herms is such a brilliant pianist as I remember walking in his studio that day asking him to play something that “sounded like confetti falling from the sky“.

As a producer, I’ve spent so many years searching for the right sonic frame for my art; this EP is the gorgeous result of that quest. I give all of the credit to Nick Atkinson, Edd Holloway, and Jimmy Robbins. Not only did they do incredible work, but they shared the producer’s chair with me as I was able to infuse my style into each track.

Jimmy even had me firing up my hard drive as we threw sounds back and forth to each other for “God Save The Queens”. Not to mention Edd Holloway tracking my vocals for “Confetti” over Zoom last year. What a privilege it’s been to work with true collaborators!

I’m anxious to have this project out in the world. It feels like a stepping stone, a moving on. I’m excited to hear how people take it and make it their own.

I really hope it brings someone out there a little bit of peace and comfort knowing they’re not alone in how they feel, that there is hope. Because somewhere in Nashville, Tennessee, there’s a girl who doesn’t really know what she’s doing, but she’s singing anyway. Confetti included.

Listen to my Confetti EP below!

Words by Ivory Layne // Follow her on Twitter + Instagram

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