Arden Alexa, a rising singer-songwriter from San Francisco, is making waves in the music industry with her unique and quirky indie-pop sound.
From a young age, Arden was captivated by music and singing, and her passion led her to participate in musical activities throughout high school.
In 2021, she released her first single and has been dedicated to her craft. Arden draws inspiration from pop icons like Taylor Swift, Katy Perry, and other artists who soundtrack her childhood and teen years.
This blend of influences is evident in her latest track, “Strawberry Pie,” which showcases both her musical talent and her aspirations to work within the mainstream music genre.
The music video for “Strawberry Pie” was directed by her close friend and features her former lover, Chad, as a co-star. Shot in her own, the video takes us into Arden’s whimsical world filled with strange tea parties reminiscent of Alice in Wonderland and an array of stuffed animals.
Arden’s music is the perfect mix of catchy hooks, relatable lyrics, and genuine emotion, making her one to watch in the pop world. Get ready to fall head over heels for Arden Alexa and her magical musical journey.
What drew you to music production in the first place?
When people ask me this question, I always say that I started singing the day I was born, which is an exaggeration but not by much. Everyone in my family is very musical, my dad sings opera and progressive rock and my older brother does musical theatre, so this heavily influenced me as a child.
The first ever movie that I watched was the Phantom of the Opera, which kickstarted my obsession with music. I’m told that I would go around the house singing songs from Phantom. However, it wasn’t until I was older that I realized why I loved to sing so much. For as long as I can remember, I have had really bad anxiety and music has been the one thing that is able to calm that anxiety.
Singing helps me actually be present and quiets my head in a way that not many other things are able to do. As my singing and songwriting skills improved, and I began sharing my music with others, I realized how passionate I was about making music and how much I loved to share it.
What or whom do you go to for inspiration or motivation?
Almost all of my inspiration comes from my own life. I’ve found so much to write about in my own life, from relationships to books I’ve read, to places I’ve been to. When I first began songwriting, I was actually pretty shy and protective of my emotions and kept a lot of things to myself.
So, songwriting became an outlet through which I shared all the emotions that I wasn’t actually sharing out loud. While that is still definitely a big part of my songwriting inspiration, I think that I have been able to expand my creativity beyond that.
What are some of the obstacles you encounter in your career?
Something that occurs pretty often is that I am usually the youngest and only female musician in any given setting. Every convention and open mic that I have been to has been dominated by older men, which can feel so alienating and intimidating.
It takes a lot of courage in those settings to speak up and make a place for myself, and that is something that I am definitely still working on. I imagine that I will continue to deal with this as a pursue my career because the music industry is such a male-dominated industry that often looks down on and minimizes women.
What distinguishes you as a creative individual?
I think there are a couple of things that really define and distinguish me as an artist. The most prominent thing is probably how important authenticity is to me. Throughout the entire process of creating and releasing a song, I strive to remain as true to myself and as organic as possible.
Whether that means using real instruments instead of programmed ones in the studio, or writing a song about something deeply personal, authenticity is something that I always, always try to think about.
This is so important to me because I feel like so much of the music industry today has become focused on earning money and making easy hits. As someone with such a deep deep love of music, this is really sad to see.
So, in striving for authenticity when I’m making music, I think part of me is trying to preserve the idea of making music for the sake of music and to be able to share it and connect with people.
What’s the significance of the current song or album in your life?
“Strawberry Pie” has been so important in my life since it was created. This was an amazing song because I knew right away that it would be special, and the entire recording and production process only strengthened that idea.
It is definitely the song that I am the proudest of, and that I feel truly encapsulates me as an artist. I think this song will be the perfect way for fans to hear my music and be introduced to my world!
What are you working on at the moment?
Well, I won’t say anything too specific but I would definitely expect quite a bit more music and maybe even a few more music videos as well! On a more general note, I want to keep performing, writing music, and connecting with fans!
What are your plans for the year ahead?
2023 will actually be the first full year that I will work full-time as a musician (I graduated high school in 2022) so I can’t wait to see the growth that happens this year. I think this year will be super important in terms of defining myself as an artist and seeing where I fit in the music industry.
How do you handle negative criticism or feedback on your music?
I think this is something that everyone has to learn how to handle, no matter their profession. Growing up as a perfectionist, being able to take criticism was something I really had to struggle to learn. But eventually, I was able to learn to take criticism with an open mind and see it as helpful as opposed to hurtful. It also helps me to think about the fact that even my favourite artists and the most popular artists in the world still get criticism from some people.
What advice would you give to aspiring musicians trying to make it in the industry?
My advice for aspiring musicians is to just go for it. For a long time, I was really scared of committing because I was worried about failing or letting down the people around me. It took a lot for me to sit down with my parents and tell them that I didn’t want to follow the traditional path of going to college, but now I get to do what I love and I’m so happy. So go for it! Don’t wait because you’re afraid!
Do you have any upcoming projects or releases that you’re excited about?
I’m planning on releasing a few more songs this year and I could not be more excited about those. I really feel like I’ve come into my own as an artist and made my sound more distinct so I’m really proud of these upcoming songs!!
Do you have any plans to branch out into other genres or styles of music?
Genre is one thing I don’t really like to define about myself because I feel like putting a label limits my freedom and ability to expand into other genres. Already I think that I blend multiple genres and influences when creating music. My music is definitely influenced by the artists that I currently listen to, so as I get older and that changes, I’m sure my music will similarly evolve!