Entirely PR Interview With Artist Ilana Herst
1. Where are we talking from today?
A. I’m living in Brooklyn, New York.
2. What would you like to accomplish in 2019?
A. I would love to get a record deal and potentially move to Nashville to pursue my music.
3. What is your take on politics?
A. Politically I identify myself as a liberal.
4. Where did you get your artist’s name from?
A. It’s my given name, I decided not to change it and instead go with what’s simpler.
5. Growing up, how important has music been in your life? Can you recall the moment when you decided that you wanted to be a musician? Was it an easy or difficult choice to make?
A. Music has been one of the most important things in my life. I had a difficult childhood, but the music was always there for me and it was something I could constantly turn to and depend on. I don’t think I’ve ever experienced a specific moment when I decided to be a musician, music is just a part of who I am. Whether or not I’m pursuing it as a career or just playing guitar alone in my apartment, I’m a musician just the same. It can be hard to stay motivated sometimes, but I would be writing songs regardless of whether or not the world was listening simply because I love it.
6. Was there ever a time when you thought about doing something else? If you weren’t a musician today, what could you see yourself doing?
A. I’ve never been a career person, I never saw myself settling into one profession. If I wasn’t a musician, then I would probably be lost.
7. What has been the biggest surprise so far about making music your career? What has been an unexpected or welcome challenge to it all?
A. The biggest surprise so far has been how many people I’ve had the opportunity to connect with through music. This can be through meeting strangers while I’m busking in the subways, through talking with audience members after playing a gig, or through jamming with friends just for fun. An unexpected challenge is finding the motivation to continuously put myself and my music out there. It’s easy to write and play songs alone in my apartment, but the only way to grow and develop as an artist and as a person is to reach outside of our comfort zones.
8. What was it like putting together your EP?
A. Recording my EP was an incredible experience. Working in the studio with such talented and kind people has been the highlight of my music career so far. Writing and composing songs is my favorite part of being a musician, so getting to do that in a professional environment was a really special experience for me that I’ll always be grateful for.
9. Who are some of your favorite artists or rather, what musicians have continued to inspire you and your music? Who would you still love to work with in the future?
A. My favorite artists include James Taylor, Jackson Browne, Carole King, Gregory Alan Isakov, John Moreland, Kacey Musgraves, Cam, Ruston Kelly… mostly anyone with a strong acoustic, folk or pop sound and thought-provoking lyrics. It would be amazing to work with Kacey Musgraves in the future, I think that her writing and her vocals are incredible.
10. What has it been like keeping up with your social media accounts and all of the different platforms? Is it hard to stay up to date on it all? What would you say is your favorite way to connect with your fans now?
A. Keeping up with social media is a little harder for me because I’m a bit of an introvert. But I also understand that to gain a following, it’s important to let people know what you’re up to. My favorite way to connect with fans is through Instagram, I find that I can reach the most people on that platform.
11. If you were going to be stranded on a deserted island, what musical item would you take with you and why?
A. I would take my guitar with me. I can’t get through a day without playing the guitar, so it would be a must.
12. If your music was going to be featured on any TV show that is currently on right now, which would you love it to be on? Or if you prefer, what is a movie that you love that you wish your music was featured in?
A. The only TV show I watch is The Office, and I’m not sure if my music fits that genre 🙂 But if my music could be featured in a movie, I think I would choose Little Women. It’s one of my favorites and the rest of the soundtrack is already amazing, so it would mean a lot to have my songs alongside those.
13. At the end of the day, what do you hope people take away from your music?
A. I hope people take away the feeling of being less alone. I try to write my songs with honesty, no matter how upfront the emotions may be. If anyone listening feels like I captured some semblance of how they’re feeling and feels comforted by that in itself – that’s the goal.
14. When you are not making music what else do you enjoy to do?
A. Outside of writing songs, I like taking long walks, reading books, learning, spending time in nature… basic activities you would expect of a songwriter 🙂