We had the good fortune of connecting with Lacei and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Lacei, what led you to pursuing a creative path professionally?
When I was really young, maybe 6 months old, I used to take music CDs out of a wooden storage box & look at them. Some I would put some in a pile & others I’d toss over my shoulder. My mom always said I was different haha. I was always fascinated by music growing up, crawling towards my dad’s guitar as an infant, and playing the piano. After a day of elementary school, I would come home, sit at the piano, and write music because it helped me process my feelings. Over the years, my music began to change. My first album, “15 Minutes Ago,” was a compilation of songs I had written up until I was 13. As I grew older, I had experiences that began to morph the content of my music. On my 21st birthday, I was diagnosed with an extremely rare chronic illness. Its origins are unknown, which made me search for answers. This in turn completely changed the trajectory of my music. It inspired me to use the research skills I learned at Loyola Marymount University to investigate the cultivation of food, environmental pollutants, pharmaceuticals, and more. My community has a long history of industry including an oil refinery, paint manufacturers, and other chemical processing companies. Let’s just say throughout my research, I found substantial evidence of unethical practices. A lot of my lyrical content shines a light on these social and environmental matters. I chose an artistic career because it is what I always knew. Through the years, this passion for music morphed into something bigger; it truly became my life. My biggest hope is to inspire, educate, and entertain with my music.
Please tell us more about your music. What sets you apart from others?
I’d like for people to know that my new music is extremely rebellious. People have told me “you shouldn’t say those things,” or “you shouldn’t go that route.” & I have to admit, I’ve contemplated what they’ve said. However, I believe as a culture, we often let others dictate the course of our life. I want the course of my life to be based on me; no one else. I’m not afraid to talk about true social issues such as anti-corruption, systematic oppression, environmental sustainability, ethical farming, etc. It’s my truth therefore, I’m going to speak it, no matter what.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I’m super biased because I’m from the South-Bay, but I think we have a lot of hidden gems here. If I had a friend visiting from out of town I’d take them to Redondo Beach. We would tan on the sand for a bit, maybe jump in the water, then skateboard on the strand to Old Tony’s on the Pier. We’d definitely get the Fire Chief Mai Tai (shout out to bartender Michael)! At this point we’d be lit…those things are strong! Haha. Once we’re sober (be safe kids)…we’d go up to Palos Verdes in the dark and hike around the forest, cliffs, etc. It sounds dangerous, but that’s what makes it fun!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
First and foremost I have to shout out my dad! He was my first inspiration, being a musician himself. He started me off with Bach, Mozart, and Chopin, then did a 180 and shocked me with Led Zeppelin! My second shout out goes to a very special music teacher who recently passed away. Louise Fenn was so loving and inspirational. I was the type of student who could hear music and play it. However, I struggled reading notes. Louise took a unique approach to teaching me music theory. She always encouraged my music writing. To help me understand music theory, she had me write which notes I wrote in my song, a reverse way of teaching me. Throughout my music career, I have been fortunate to work with so many amazing people. I would be remissed to only name one. Thank you to all my mentors over the years including: Viktor Ahlgren, Matt Vogel, Eddie Applebaum, Sean Hurwitz, Vince Pizzinga, Greg Levonian, John Lane, Monica Mitchell, Chantal Claret and James Euringer, John Mark-Seltzer, Jaydon Bean, Dean Scheibel, and many more.