Chill vibes are in order as Sydney-based artist LX Mason joins us on Close-up Culture for a chat about his new single ‘I Don’t’.
Q: I think ‘I Don’t’ has an useful message in today’s age of social media pressures and general divisiveness. What message did you want to put out there?
A: Thanks so much! Social media pressures, and any sort of oppressive cultural norm were definitely at the forefront of my mind when writing this one.
With this song, I wanted to put the message out there that life isn’t meant to be lived buried under those pressures. Sooner or later, you got to tell people to get lost and do what makes you feel comfortable in your own skin.
Q: Meaning aside, this is an upbeat and chill track. Can you talk about formulating the sound of the song?
A: Formula? Probably something like: Destiny’s Child sass + JT harmonies + 2018 electro sprinkles = I Don’t
Shout out to my mate St Humain! I originally had the idea for the chorus and whispered it into my voice memos. Then we got together one day and wrote the melody. It really set the tone for where I wanted to go. The way he works is mad, so he had all the stems ready to go in like three days or something.
Q: Do the chill vibes of ‘I Don’t’ reflect your lifestyle?
A: Almost too chill. I spend a lot of time daydreaming, in my own headspace, and writing when I’m supposed to be doing something else. I’m that kind of introvert that sometimes doesn’t know he’s “introverting”.
Q: You were born and raised in Florida before moving to Sydney. How have those two cultures impact you as a person and as a musician?
As a person, Florida will always be my roots (hey mom). But moving here definitely revealed some things within me that I had to deal with.
Sydney has taught me to not take myself too seriously and to chase what has been put in front of me – but help people along the way. The music scene is very accessible, not too much “us vs. them” going on – we’re all just trying to put good art into the world.
Q: I get Justin Timberlake vibes from ‘I Don’t’, so I wasn’t surprised to hear he is an inspiration of yours. Can you talk about tour relationship with music growing up and how your taste has evolved?
A: (laughs) Nailed it! Music has always been a part of my life – even though I didn’t start playing/singing until 17, I was always surrounded by music.
Growing up I first started listening to Blackstreet, Aaliyah, La Bouche, Toni Braxton and Boyz II Men because of my dad.
Once I started discovering music for myself I would listen to nothing but Top 40: *NSYNC, Backstreet Boys, Britney, Destiny’s Child, Michael Jackson, JLo, JT, Christina Aguilera, Jojo and even a bit grungier music like No Doubt and Avril Lavinge (which I’m so pumped that she’s back).
I think it goes unsaid that I went through a massive hardcore phase – but I try not to talk about that much.
Nowadays my music taste is a bit more chill. People like Julia Michaels, Lauv, Khalid, Lennon Stella, Daniel Caesar, Maroon 5, H.E.R. and I am always keen for Coldplay.
Q: I believe you are working on new stuff. What can your reveal?
I just finished a song over the weekend and I’m hyped. If you follow me on Insta you’ll here snippets of it soon. It’s a bit darker than the last one, but first – gotta get this music video for I Don’t out!
Q: Who would be your dream person to collab with?
A: Hands down – Julia Michaels. I think my dream scenario would be Julia, JT, Lennon Stella and myself on the same song.
Q: What kind of music do you want to make and what kind of artist do you want to be in the future?
A: I don’t want to make pop music for pop music sake. I want people to be able to feel something. It might sound a bit too “lets-go-save-the-world”, but I want to make the kind of music that makes people feel free, and sometimes that means confronting the things that have hurt you the most to get your freedom back.
As an artist, I also want to better the community and be a voice for those who have been silenced.
Q: All being well, where do you hope to be in the coming years?
A: In the coming years, I would love to be working with more artists across the world, doing tours across Australia and internationally, have an album that pours my heart out, and definitely spending holidays in Italy with my wife.