Olivia Lane Debuts New Single
Olivia Lane was named by Rolling Stone as one of ten new country artists you need to know, and it was so fun to sit down and chat about her latest single, “Rockin Around The Christmas Tree," because Olivia and I actually went to college at USC together! Shortly, after graduation, Olivia headed to Nashville to further pursue her music career, we chatted about her journey from Texas to LA then to Nashville, her latest single, and advice for young dreamers blazing their own trail!
If You Can Dream It Do It: What made you want to choose "Rockin’ Around The Christmas Tree" for your latest single?
Olivia Lane: “Christmas is my favorite holiday. I look forward to it every year!”
“Rockin’ Around The Christmas Tree" is just my one of favorite Christmas songs. Brenda Lee has such a great version, and me and my mom would always try to mimic her.”
“So, it just takes me back to shopping with my mom and being with in the car with her, and just really happy memories.”
If You Can Dream It Do It: It was really your mom who lit the fire in you when you were little and got you inspired to pursue music. Can you talk about how your mom was instrumental in your music career?
Olivia Lane: "When she was my age, she was singing around Texas in all the smoky bars and honkey tonks. As you know Lindsey, you could be a musician down there and not go anywhere else and make a really good living, because Texas is so big. Her and my Dad actually came to Nashville for a bit, she ended up singing in weddings, but she saw this musicality in me from a really young age. The way I responded to music and memorized songs. I would memorize all the Disney songs from all the Disney movies."
"A really specific memory she has was one time in fourth grade I came home, and I was singing Frank Sinatra, and she was like, ‘wow, what, how do you know 'I’ve Got The World On A String?’
My fourth grade teacher actually played Frank Sinatra to calm us down, thinking that we would hate it, but I actually loved it, so it didn’t calm me down.
So, my mom just started buying me cassette tapes, CDs, and anything she could to expose me to music. She’d take me to the recording studio; let me record, all the karaoke places, so she was awesome.
If You Can Dream It Do It: Then you convinced your parents to let you move to LA when you were 16. How crazy! Can you talk about why that leap of faith was so important when you were 16?
Olivia Lane: It was everything. I look back on that moment, because I made the decision when I was 15 going on 16, and I felt like I was at a standstill in Houston. I loved Houston. I loved my life there; there was just something more I needed to be doing with my life. I needed to be surrounded with people who were doing the same thing as me, really going for it, really getting in the industry. So, I sat at the dinner table for about six months every night, asking my parents, ‘hey have you guys thought about California?’ I guess after six months they realized I was pretty serious.
My sister was going off to college too, so I think a apart of it was being afraid of being alone, and being the only child for two years, while my sister was gone. So, I thought maybe we could do it, and my mom would go with me, and my dad would go back and forth, so that’s what we did.
I was out there sort of as a general artist, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to do theatre, music, acting, or country music. I just kind of needed to be surrounded by people doing it. I think that LA was super pivotal in my life, because I got an agent, things were happening. I was failing, and then I was failing better. I was getting into rooms I probably didn’t deserve to be in. It just took me a long time, to be like ‘oh wow, I need to work on my craft, these people are really talented.”
So, then that’s when I decided to go to USC, and that’s when I started taking songwriting and studying theatre.
If You Can Dream It Do It: USC is kind of one of those places where everyone is just this star, once you establish yourself it gets a little easier. So, how hard was it to leave that, and then pick up and move to Nashville?
Olivia Lane: “Actually it wasn’t really that hard for me. My first couple years at USC, I was, not unhappy, but I think just a little lost with what I wanted to do. I wasn’t really sure in my theatre major.” Lane also mentioned not being happy in her relationship, ‘so there was just a lot of unsure-ness in my first two years.”
However something changed when Lane picked up songwriting. “As soon as I took songwriting my sophomore year, my life made sense.”
Something really clicked, “I had never felt more of a calling in my life, and this is what I want to do. A lot of pieces started falling together, I joined an a capella group, I made friends that I really, really loved. I became really happy in college. It just made sense to me, and my story.
I love the South, and I think part of it too is I was sort of burned out on LA. I learned what I needed to learn, and I was done with that fast pace city life. I thought, ‘well I’m from Texas, love country music, love storytelling. I think that’s the one thing theatre taught me is storytelling. I love stories, so it all made sense for me to go to Nashville, because that is where country music is at.”
If You Can Dream It Do It: For people who haven’t heard of your music what do you want them to feel when they hear your songs?
Olivia Lane: "I want them to feel everything."
"The reason I got into music was probably because I love people, I love relating, and I love feeling like I’m not alone on some emotions. I want people to hear my music and maybe feel like they’re not alone."
"Regardless of what I’m singing, I tend to write things that are inspiring, and going for your goals and your dreams, because that’s what I’m doing. I’m writing from my perspective.
I’m writing the trails, tribulations, the fears, hopes, and accomplishments of going for your dreams, and the struggles I’ve had to go through to for that.
I just want people to know it’s okay to go for your dreams, and it’s okay to feel the way that you feel, and that you’re not alone. We’re all human, we’re all here to relate."
If You Can Dream It Do It: Since your single is ‘Rockin’ Around The Christmas Tree,’ what is one of your favorite Christmas traditions?
Olivia Lane: For as long as I can remember, my aunt makes us our own ornaments. She stitches ornaments for us. One year I got a USC ornament. I’ve got maybe 22 or 25 ornaments, and she stitches our name and the year on the back of it. So, me and my sister, and we go through and organize them by the year, and it’s just a moment for my sister and I just going through them, and realizing how much we’ve grown up. It’s a really special thing that my aunt does!"
If You Can Dream It Do It: You have just done so much, you’ve gone to LA, you’ve done theatre, you’re doing music, what advice would you give wanting to pursue your dreams, because you’ve done a lot for as young as you are.
Olivia Lane: "I mean I feel like when people are asked that question they say to be yourself. But, I think along with that, we’re always changing as people, is such a vast thing to say, just be yourself."
"So, I think honestly I just think you need to take your time to learn who you are. Whether that’s being single, and going out, or moving to a new city and learning about yourself, or really just diving into your career and writing.
Don’t be afraid to fail. You can’t just not mess up and be perfect, because then what are you chasing, if you’re just good at everything?
So, I think be yourself, but the way to get to yourself is take risks, take chances, and scare yourself a little bit."
Watch Olivia's brand new music video here: