Interview Feature: Lindsey Stirling’s New Musical Journey
As we journey through our lives in today’s world, we often equate the struggles we face as battles to be won and wage war on brick walls blocking our path. Whether it’s internal or external, there’s certainly no shortage of hurdles to jump or bridges to cross in our quest. Regardless of the final goal, it’s these challenges that will ultimately test our resolve in the pursuit of our dreams and desires. The key to overcoming these obstacles is to surrender control and releasing any attachment to the outcome. As a result, the outcome has the potential to become far better than we ever imagined possible and may even lead in a new direction we had never previously considered. By greeting the challenge as an old friend, joyfully embracing it with gratitude and a beginner’s mind to learn our way through it, we show much greater strength and courage to achieve the seemingly impossible. In doing so, we shine our brilliant light as a beacon for others to do the same, while showing them they aren’t alone in whatever challenges they’re facing. In one of her latest singles, ‘Underground’, Lindsey Stirling chaperones a musical journey experience through some of her own internal struggles with her signature modern violin pop sound.
We previously featured her New Classical sound with a twist that has also proven to become one of the most recognizable names in modern music with an ever-growing fanbase. Continuing to see success with her album ‘Warmer in the Winter’ by releasing her newest singles ‘Underground’ and ‘Upside’ from her latest album ‘Artemis’, which is currently available worldwide. Fusing together her modern violin style with electro-pop music, Lindsey creates a personal story of overcoming some of life’s most challenging and difficult times. Stirling explains further on her album ‘Artemis’, “One of the best examples of perseverance is the moon. Time and time again she gets covered in shadow and if one didn’t know better, it would sometimes seem as though she ceased to exist. There have been times of my life where I have felt completely overcome by the “shadow” of grief or depression; I felt like I’d never feel full happiness again. But the moon has taught me a powerful lesson. Just because she gets covered in shadow doesn’t mean she isn’t still there… and that she won’t fight back to reclaim her full light. Artemis is the goddess of the moon. This album tells her story; it tells my story; I think it tells everyone’s story.”
Lindsey’s origin in music started early since it was such an integral part of her childhood. “From the time I was very young, I remember how passionate my parents were about music. My dad had a library of old record LPs, mostly classical compositions. With the flair of a circus ringmaster, he would choose a record, and then blast the melodies for us as we ran around the couch, laughing and dancing. Our family didn’t have a lot of money, so we weren’t able to do a lot of the expensive activities many of our other friends were doing with their families, but that didn’t stop us from having fun together. One of our regular outings involved free orchestra concerts at the park. My mom sang lullabies to us every night before bed; something I always looked forward to. And every year on our birthday, we received a personalized song/poem from our Grandma Ruth. Music was a huge part of our family; I don’t remember a day without it,” she recalls. As for the reason behind her desire to play the violin, it was the outings to the free orchestra concerts that first attracted her attention. “And it didn’t take me long to figure out who the stars of the orchestra were! First of all, the violinists seemed to have all the “cool” parts, and I noticed that the concertmaster got extra special attention at the beginning and end of the show. I totally wanted that kind of attention, and I definitely wanted to play what I deemed the best instrument! Six-year-old me, of course, started begging my parents for a violin. At first, they thought I might get over the infatuation, but after months of incessant pleas, my mom finally caved in. Though my parents really couldn’t afford it, my mom was able to find a college student willing to give me a 15-minute lesson for $15/week. In time, my parents sacrificed some of their own needs so that I could take hour-long lessons with a more experienced teacher and enrolled me with the community orchestra. The rest is history,” Stirling elaborates.
In the music video for ‘Underground’, Lindsey features some previous contestants from the hit show America’s Got Talent, which has become much like a family amongst the various performers. “I’m honoured and thrilled to always get to work with amazing, hard-working people! Truly. It’s incredible to see that previous contestants are, like me, making a living doing what they love to do. Each of them, at some point, were brave enough to showcase their art and chose to bring their talents to the world. And the world is a much more beautiful, colorful place because of it,” Stirling says of her AGT family. When asked about the significance of the three shapes in her video, she responds, “The three shapes represent the three prisoners underground: The dancing contortionist (circle), the dancing violinist (triangle), and the dancers stuck in the cell (square). I also the love symbolism of these shapes in general. Circles exemplify totality, wholeness, and perfection. Triangles represent strength because any weight placed on them is evenly distributed between all three sides. And the square represents commitment, balance, integrity, and direction.”
Wanting to explore deeper into the mind of such a multi-award-winning musician, I asked if there was a single message that she would want to put out there to make the world the kind of place that she would aspire to live in, what would that message be and why she felt this message was so important, Stirling replies, “Continuously seek out the truth. Be brave enough to face it, be brave enough to make changes, and be brave enough to commit to it and live it. Truth and light, I believe, are synonymous. When we turn and face the light (our inner light/voice/God/spirit), we will be led in the direction we are meant to go, and ultimately discover and become the person we are capable of becoming. The main purpose of this life, I believe, is to repeatedly uncover, discover, and remember who we really are and to live that truth to the best of our ability.”