Halestorm’s Lzzy Hale Talks Appearance on Dada Life’s ‘Tic Tic Tic,’ Favorite Collaborations + More
In recent years, we've seen Halestorm's Lzzy Hale become a "go-to" vocalist for collaborations. Not only has she collaborated with the likes of Stone Sour and Device in the hard rock and metal world, but she's expanded her horizons to include songs with artists outside of the genre like violinist Lindsey Stirling and country star Eric Church. Hale's latest collaboration comes with the Swedish dance DJ duo Dada Life on a song called "Tic Tic Tic."
We recent spoke with Lzzy to get the details on how the collaboration came about. Check out part one of our interview with Lzzy Hale as she discusses working with Dada Life, her investigation into the electronic dance world and she also talks about her favorite past collaborations:
How did you get involved with Dada Life?
Really I’ve been super lucky to have had so many artists all at once. Lots of people seek me out these past how many years? Just a couple years. Really they came down and they just -- there's mutual friends. They were looking for somebody, and I gave it a listen. And at first I’m like, “What the hell would they want me to do this for?” And then I ended up talking with everybody and they enjoyed the grit in my voice and so I’m like, "Sweet." So I ended up doing it on the road just in kind of in random places around the country and finished it up and sent it to them and they thought it was great.
They’re really cool. I said this before, but I’m a big fan of the strange. I really am. I just think that if you can get up there and own whatever you are, I’m a huge advocate of owning who you are, so Dada Life is all about that. It was very inspiring and I learned actually a lot about myself by immersing myself into this genre that I’d never really done before.
I'm assuming the recording sessions was just trading files back and forth. You laid the vocals down, but you're probably not really sure what it's going to sound like in the end. What was your reaction when you heard it back?
They kept a lot of the original arrangement that I ended up singing to. They say, like a lot of people nowadays regarding I guess what I do, that they really want things to be done as a performance. So it’s not like, “Hey, give me 20 takes of the verse.” So I did a lot of takes with every kind of vocal all the way through and they did keep it very close to the original arrangement which was awesome.
I’m on the opposite end of it. I’m like, a song is a song. I'm not entirely familiar with this genre, but I mean thank God for technology though because at this point in time you can do anything while we’re both being so busy. You know what I mean? I didn’t have to fly around the country. Nobody had to come to me. It was great. I could literally do this while we’re out touring our asses off and they were totally willing to do that. I think it’s kind of normal for them to do that.
You've worked with artists in different genres before. Was there anything about the process that stood out to you as being different to what you would do normally?
The great thing about doing something that’s outside of Halestorm and outside of anything related to what we do is that I can kind of explore some different personalities and some different tiers of my own voice. It’s very freeing. It’s kind of like you don’t necessarily have the same -- I don’t want to say pressure -- but you don’t have that same voice in the back of your head saying, “Is your fan base going to enjoy this?” Obviously you want your fan base to enjoy it but really you’re lending your talent to some friends. By immersing myself into this project, I learned a lot about this different personality that is this song. So I was trying to find a way to blend obviously what they’re asking from me because they come to me and they want me to be myself, which is awesome, but also kind of blending that and I guess accepting new adventures and learning something new. It’s very exciting actually.
You tour constantly, but any chance you might join them onstage or work something up in your own show to where "Tic Tic Tic" might fit in?
Anything’s possible. I’ve definitely been talking as of this week with the guys in Dada Life. They love the track. It’s real now that it’s finally released and so we’ve begun kind of talking about, “So when would it actually be possible and could we do something together as in a live show?” And really it’s because of scheduling at this point and whether or not -- “Hey is it easier for you? You can do something with me on the more rock end of it or would it be easier for me to do something with you?” I mean really, anything’s possible. I did the same thing with Lindsey Stirling. It just ended up being everything meshing schedule wise, but I definitely am not saying no.
If we were to do a deep dive into your music collection, would we find music from the electronic dance world? What is on a Lzzy Hale dance party mix tape?
That’s funny. I do have quite a few guilty pleasures but I think they are more on the end of the trip-hop rock side. I mean I have a lot of '90s trip-hop stuff that I like listening to and especially into pop worlds like that. One of my guilty pleasures is the Ray of Light album by Madonna because it’s weird and trippy and still great fun. Not many people know that about me, I guess.
I think this is kind of my introduction into that world because I didn’t realize how crazy these shows are and like I said, Dada Life, they are all about just owning who they are and pretty much doing whatever just makes them feel good. To me on my end, that is very rock n roll. They have such a diehard fan base and I’ve been trolling their Twitter and all of their fans are just getting engaged as to what this world is all about. I think it would be a hell of a lot of fun. I guess I would have to watch to not get too deep into that rabbit hole I guess because some of those Dada Life parties looked dangerous [laughs] for a gal like me. I don’t know man, to me I feel like this is a whole new world and my introduction to that. So I guess my answer to that is that you will probably see more of that genre on my playlist in the near future.
You've recorded with multiple artists over the years, and we'll take Dada Life out of this equation since it's the current one, but out of all the stuff that you've done with other artists, do you have a favorite in that history that stands out?
I guess the two most recent obviously besides Dada Life, which was a totally different end of it and I really enjoyed it, it would have to be a big time choosing between the Lindsey Stirling project with "Shatter Me" and then Eric Church because they were two totally different things but neither one of us knew that it was going to really have the popularity or support that it did. We thought, "Oh this will be nice, it will be an extra little thing that we could talk about," especially with Lindsey Stirling. Like we didn’t know that "Shatter Me" was going to do what it did and we literally went from meeting each other for the first time in L.A. and recording the song to a couple weeks later going on Good Morning America and that was an interesting world as well because she is from the YouTube side of it and she is kind of coming in, this is going to sound horrible, but coming in the back way of kind of where I built it the opposite way. So we always had a lot to talk about and learn from each other. And then the Eric Church thing was fun, just don’t give a f--k, and just want everything to just be rock 'n' roll and then it was, "Alright here we are, let’s do a shot of whiskey and play the song." [laughs]
Our thanks to Halestorm's Lzzy Hale for the interview and stay tuned for Part 2 where we go more in-depth about Halestorm. For now, take a listen to her collaboration with Dada Life on "Tic Tic Tic" in the player below and if you dig the track, be sure to pick it up at iTunes. To learn more about Dada Life, check out their website for news, tour dates and details.
Listen to Dada Life Featuring Lzzy Hale on "Tic Tic Tic"