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When Lana Del Rey Was Lizzy Grant
Lana Del Rey is everywhere these days. She performed a rather mediocre set on SNL this past weekend, and is scheduled for Letterman and Ellen, all in anticipation of her major label debut at the end of the month. Time for two cents from the Boogie!
Lana Del Rey is the stage name of Lizzy Grant, and that’s how we were acquainted long before all the hype. Through some friends in the music business, we first discovered her sultry yet addictive style during CMJ in 2008, catching a pair of back-to-back performances at the Living Room and National Underground. Shows that revealed the dueling forces of her star power and crippling stage fright. At the time, the Kill Kill EP had just been released, and she had already been gaining some small-time buzz during the annual music fest. Her strong songwriting, vocal delivery, and beauty were enough to captivate, leading to the 2010 release of her self-titled debut on 5 Points Records (as Lana). Now she’s blowing up like whoa, thanks to a major label deal with Interscope.
These days, everyone and their mother seems to be all over the chanteuse, whose second album is due at the end of the month. Her mere presence in the musical landscape, as Gawker noted back in September, is quite polarizing. There are some major “authenticity” issues at hand – fans are split between the old guard who cherish the pre-collagen-lipped singer and those who discovered her way after-the-fact. Not to mention her stylistic about-face from the debut. Chalk it up to artistic evolution.
Although some of the new stuff is seemingly more ambitious, it still holds onto that amalgamation of Hollywood Pop and “sad-core.” Billboard now carries the full track list for Born to Die (dropping January 31) and a full expose on the upstart in the current issue.
Here’s one of our faves from the last record: