You don’t have to work in music for very long to realize there is little to no money in new music discovery. Clicks drive digital ad dollars, and names people recognize are what drives clicks, but if we are a publication that prides ourselves on keeping an ear out for the next generation of music sensations (and we are) then we must take the risk of introducing readers to talent they might not otherwise know and except whatever drop in revenue comes with it. As far as we are concerned, the day you start creating anything for the sole purpose of making money is the day you lose a very big and very important piece of your soul, and with that in mind we’d like to take a few moments to share with you a young singer-songwriter named Annie Schindel who has quickly won over our editorial staff.
There is no minimum age requirements for talent. Annie Schindel is just 17 years old, but already she is writing with a wit and perspective on life well beyond her years. The music Annie has released thus far, which can all be found on her Soundcloud page, chronicles a life lived to the fullest without much, if any, concern for things beyond her control. To listen to Annie’s music is to live in the moment with her and experience all that she experiences in perfect time. Check it out:
We recently connected with Annie over email to discuss her career so far and her goals for the future. You can enjoy highlights from our conversation below:
SUBSTREAM: Hello, Annie! You’re one of the first artists we found through Soundcloud’s recent Discovery update. How long have you been playing guitar/writing music?
I’ve been playing guitar for just about five years now and writing music since I was a toddler, where I forced my family to sit and watch me perform original songs, with full-out dance moves, of course.
Who are your songwriting inspirations?
Songwriters who write smart, authentic and catchy lyrics like Ed Sheeran, Kacey Musgraves, Matty Healy from the 1975, and Taylor Swift are writers I really admire and look up to. For me, their lyrics tell a story and build a sense of emotion, almost magically.
A lot of your music seems to be based on real life experiences. Is that true?
One-hundred percent. When I feel something, I feel it big, so songwriting allows me to take those feelings and write about those experiences in a very honest, raw way. For a lot of my songs, I take smaller moments—pictures almost—and turn them into an entire song and pull apart each feeling, movement, and eye glance that happened.
We really love the line in “Don’t Really Know…” about clinging to high school love because you feel that your first love was good enough. What is the story behind that line/song?
I wrote this line about the feeling when you fall in love with a person for the first time, for me, that was high school. You think that relationship will last forever, and it’s the idea of holding on to something that was beautiful and fragile thinking it’s the best you’ll ever get, when in fact, there’s a lot more to discover. That song is a story of teenage confusion and missteps, hoping at the end of the day that everything will work out.
Do you record at home, or do you have a studio you frequent? Producer?
I record in a little corner in my bedroom with a mic I bought.
Do you consider yourself an aspiring musician/star? I noticed you don’t have an official music page outside of Soundcloud.
I’m absolutely an aspiring musician. Creating music and performing music is what makes me happiest, and my goal is to continue to grow. I think at first, I was really intimidated by the idea of sharing such personal songs with other people, and my first step in doing so was with my Soundcloud. I hope people keep listening!
You’ve released a handful of songs so far this year, and each seems to be performing well online. Do you have any plans for a proper EP or album?
It’s my dream to release a professionally recorded album, and I’m singing and writing and rewriting and singing again everyday—it’s all I want to do.
When can we expect to hear more songs?
I’ll be posting more Soundcloud songs at least every month or so, it’s really important to me to make sure the songs I share are songs that mean a lot to me in terms of both their lyrics and melody; I’m a bit of a perfectionist about that, but absolutely, more music coming.
What are your career aspirations? Is singer-songwriter music like what you’re creating now what you hope to stick with moving forward?
Yes! For me it’s not just about creating the music, it’s about sharing it and connecting with people through music. Having them hear it, feel it, relate to it, and belt it out in the shower, all of this.
Listen to more of Annie’s music on Soundcloud.