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A Medium Exclusive First Listen: Lilly Winwood’s “Few More Records”

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In 2015, Lilly Winwood needed a vacation. The countryside of her native Gloucestershire, England, felt too familiar, and London was, in her own words, “so big, so expensive, and reeked of havoc and loss and all that good stuff.” So Winwood hopped on a plane to Nashville, where she’d spent childhood summers visiting her mother’s family. The plan was to come back to England after a few weeks — but the vacation never ended. Now set to release a new single (“Few More Records”), a song with straight forward lyrics, that paired with her resonating vocals, make it an anthem for anyone whose career path is more like a maze than a straight arrow.

Growing up in Gloucestershire. Which live music venues (in and nearby) Gloucestershire are your favorites to catch a show?

It’s honestly been a while since I’ve managed to catch a show back in Gloucestershire, but from what I can remember The Frog and Fiddle in Cheltenham was always my favourite place to catch a live show or to play. They always had such a variety of different genres of players, both local and out of town, and in an area where an eclectic sense of music is sparse, the place never seemed to disappoint.

You began touring at 16 after playing in a band with your brother. Can you describe taking the stage for the first time on tour?

The only way I can describe taking the stage being so young was absolutely terrifying. I was definitely still learning how to navigate around my confidence and figure out my sound so to be that vulnerable in front of somewhat large crowds was an experience that truly took a lot of convincing on my part to repeat.

Recording the duet, “Higher Love”, with your dad Steve. The song, your Dad’s first number one, invokes memories of church music. The lyrics resonate especially well now, during the pandemic, a time when so much has been taken from us. Any plans to write with your Dad?

It’s funny that you mention church music, as that is what my Dad is passionate about these days, he spends a lot of time working and singing in the local choir in England and draws a lot of inspiration from that. I have no immediate plans to write with my Dad, although I would love to if social distancing ever allows us!

Your debut EP, Silver Stage, offered an English take on traditional American roots music. Next year you are set to release your debut album, Time Well Spent. How has the Americana genre influenced the evolution of your songwriting?

Americana music has always inspired and influenced me before I even really knew what ‘Americana’ was. I remember listening to Jason Isbell and Brandi Carlile and thinking that this is the kind of music that I want to strive to play for people. In my opinion, the genre has such a broad spectrum of possibilities that always seem to centre around the lyrics, which is what I always want people to hear before they hear the music.

Choosing “Few More Records” as your debut single from the album. What’s the backstory to the song?

I wrote “Few More Records” in Mobile, Alabama, whilst stuck at a friend’s house due to all the interstates back to Nashville being shut down due to ice storms. Mobile was my last stop on a tour and all I wanted to do was get back home but it seemed like every time I would get on the highway the traffic would be so backed up that I would just turn around and stay for another day. The song is about being burnt out as all hell but still sticking to your guns and knowing that playing music isn’t all fun and games, it’s a job!

You’ve collaborated with Boo Ray and Don Gallardo. Will there be any collaborations on the upcoming album?

I’m so excited for you to hear what a killer backing band mine was. It consisted of every single one of my favourite session players here in Nashville that have played/toured with idols of mine, including Laur Joamets on guitar (Sturgill Simpson), Kevin Black on bass (Margot Price). Collaborating with two of my dear friends Allen Thompson & Alex Munoz to produce this record was such a fantastic experience also, I’m so thrilled with their guidance and think they are incredibly talented.

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Down time during the quarantine. Have you had a chance to explore outdoors Nashville with your dogs?

I have! Although I haven’t seemed to have left home at all in Nashville throughout 2020, we’ve still made time for exciting hikes around secret spots in the city that aren’t too crowded normally. I’m a big fan of taking them to Shelby Bottoms around this time of year when the leaves start to turn.

As 2020 approaches year end, what are some of your favorite holiday tunes to listen to with your family?

We love keeping up to date with new releases, whether it be holiday music or just regular old music! Excited to hear what new music is going to be released as the holidays approach.

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