Late July is the nom de plume of Nicole Simone, a singer songwriter with a lot to offer. Originally from Toronto, Canada, she spent much of her childhood in Del Mar, California, leading her to consider herself bi-coastal, Despite her stage name, Late July’s month of preference is actually October. Late July’s recent single, ‘Calling To The Moon’, was released in Late January, and comes with a music video which was shot in Bronson Canyon, in Griffith Park, Los Angeles, which is probably most famous for being the location of the Bat Cave, in the 1960s ‘Batman’ TV series.
As part of her series of interviews with Los Angeles artists, Lisa had a chat with Late July and asked her some questions.
What’s the Late July story?
Redheaded Irish Sicilian girl grows up between Toronto and California. Likes beautiful songs making me feel all sorts of big feelings.
Biggest inspirations? In life? In music?
The biggest inspirations in life are alchemy and magic. I like believing in the impossible, the dark horse, the outlier. That translates to my music in a whimsical way but with dark earthy tones. Brass is really integral to my sound, the royalty of emotion and all that.
Tell us a bit about your music.
I like taking sweet sad pop songs and making them a landscape of emotional disaster. It’s easy to over-complicate or oversimplify – but the cinematic overtone is key in what I do. If I wasn’t doing music I’d be directing movies. So it all makes sense in its own way.
Most memorable experience so far in your musical career?
Just being in the moment of the creative process with my collaborators.
What is your take on the current state of the music industry?
It’s the Wild West and social media controls all. So make your art and giddy-up.
What artists apart from yourself, should we be listening to? Who’s the most played on your playlist right now?
I’m in love with Elizabeth, a dream-pop artist from Australia. Her latest record is amazing. The song “hand in hand” from Paul McCartney’s 2018 release. Ex: RE track “romance” is like a haunting heartbeat that I can’t get enough of.
If you could go back and talk to your younger self what would you say? What advice would you give yourself (or other young artists who might be just starting out)? What’s the best career advice you’ve been given and what’s the worst?
If I could go back I’d tell myself to just keep going, go crazy with it, take creative risks, ask for help, ask for funds and grants. When you’re walking in the right direction all you need to do is keep walking. Don’t compare yourself to others just consistently create and put your work into the universe- you never know what’s going to hit back. Be open to collaborating. Know that walls keep people out and boundaries show people where the door is and if you don’t maintain your authentic creative boundaries, then those boundaries are just suggestions.
The worst advice was that I was told I was too old for the music industry at 18, 25, 27, etc and to give up. Completely untrue. The best advice would be to keep making music no matter what. Stop looking at the metrics or the return on your music and respect it as art.
What question do you wish someone would ask you in an interview but nobody ever does?
About my songwriting process. As a woman artist people no matter what focus on your voice and looks. But I spend a lot of time writing all my own songs and co-producing them, creating the landscape for them. No one ever thinks to ask.
Watch the video for ‘Calling To The Moon’ below.