Rare Candy had a chance to talk on the phone with Hannah Reade, better known as Lomelda, while she was driving through the South, currently on tour with Hovvdy.
Rare Candy: Where are you right now, and how is the tour going?
Lomelda: It’s going well. I am in the van. We are on our way from Dallas to Mississippi.
RC: Do you have a show in Mississippi tonight?
Lomelda: We actually don’t have a show tonight, but we’re playing in Oxford tomorrow night.
RC: Your song “Ya With Me?” was released in September 2016, and With Ya was released in January 2017. At the risk of taking you a little too literally, do you see your songs operating in conversation with each other? Especially because your album 4E* is a solo re-recording of your first album Forever.
Lomelda: Yeah, I definitely think of them in conversation with each other. Maybe a bit too much. I think about it too much. (Laughs) Definitely those two tracks were written as competing thoughts, or competing tones of the same thought. I think that is reflected in the song titles obviously.
RC: And in the songs themselves.
Lomelda: For sure.
RC: It seems like you’re considering what it means for a song or album to be “done.” You’re approaching music more as a process – does that seem accurate?
Lomelda: Definitely. There’s such a big gap between making music, creating music, and releasing music. They’re such different things, and right now the internet is creating many new ways to approach doing those things. There are visual albums now and many different ways to consume music. I’m definitely interested in the ways one can stretch or make smaller the gap between making music and putting it out there. More simply, I’m eager to play with or think about the gap between production and release.
RC: You also reflect on memory, growing up, and location – especially the idea of home. Can you talk a little bit more about how you think about geography and a sense of space in your music?
Lomelda: Yeah, I am very sensitive to place. I’m curious about how it affects me and the people around me. It’s the principle factor in a single person’s life. Where you are controls you in a lot of ways, and it shapes you — when you grow up and you move and you think about who you are . . . You don’t want to be limited by space, but you totally are. There are good and bad things about that. It makes you who you are in a lot of ways, but it also traps you as one person. It is the same way with home. When you lose a home, or gain a home, or are looking for a home it feels like such a real tangible thing, but often home is this abstract moveable thing.
RC: Do you like traveling or going on tour?
Lomelda: I definitely do. I’m pretty new to touring actually, but I like to move and to see new things. I’m really enjoying doing that.
RC: Since we’re speaking about homes — you’re from Texas which has strong political associations. I was wondering how your artistic career is informed by politics. What role do you see music playing in the political sphere, especially now?
Lomelda: I think you can’t separate the two things, or I wouldn’t want to at least. Yeah, being here in Texas is important to me. My home base right now is actually where I grew up, in a really small, very southern town in Texas. There are so many political issues that aren’t even conceivable to many Texans that are really important to me and to the world right now. It’s challenging, but I also hope to give a voice to the people and the ideas that aren’t being discussed in my town.
RC: I saw on your twitter that your bandcamp was donating proceeds. That’s awesome.
Lomelda: It’s so funny that you mention that because I donated the money to the ACLU. However, growing up, it was actually a thing that the ACLU was super bad. We were told that they wanted to take prayer out of school etc. It’s a very conservative Christian community where I’m from. I find it so funny now because it’s called the Civil Liberties Union! Why did they think that was bad? Come on people!
RC: You work a lot with your brother, and he produces your music. Have you guys collaborated beyond production and is your whole family interested in music?
Lomelda: Yeah, my brother is a really great songwriter. I sort of started playing music because he played music. I played in his bands before I started doing my own stuff. He has switched roles now, but on my next Lomelda record I actually cover one of his songs. That felt cool.
RC: Oh nice. I was going to ask what you are working on now . . . a new record?
Lomelda: Yeah! The new record is done.
RC: Exciting! Do you have a set release date yet?
Lomelda: I don’t yet. It’s still in the tentative planning stage. Soon we will have real facts for you.
LISTEN TO LOMELDA: https://lomelda.bandcamp.com