The youth of this generation are go-getters. Just look at Alyssa Reid. Within a little over a year of being discovered through Youtube, she has managed to tour the country, shoot multiple music videos and release her very own debut album. And she’s just getting started.
Self described as, “still a kid, but mature being in the [music] industry,” 18-year-old Reid finely balances a youthful candour and maturity with the poise and confidence of a veteran musician. It’s clear that the youth of our nation cannot be underestimated.
How exciting is having the new album out?
It’s incredible. I’m not there, I haven’t been around my family and I haven’t had the chance to go HMV yet, but everyone’s tweeting me about it.
Did the album change a lot from when it was first conceived up to the final product?
Yeah, for sure. We put in songs and in the end switched them out for other songs. Some of the songs we put on the album, we ended up changing the last week, for instance “XO”, one of the songs on the album, we completely redid the production hours before we sent out the master.
“Alone Again” is rotating on almost every radio station across the country. What was your reaction when first hearing it on air?
When I first heard it I was in the car with my parents and they were arguing so I couldn’t hear it at all, but we were in the driveway so got out of the car, went inside and just blasted it. And I danced around in my living room.
Was there a song on the album that was most difficult to write or record?
Possible putting “Burned” on the album was one of the most difficult things for me because it was such a personal song to me. I wrote and co-wrote everything on the album, but “Burned” was one of those songs that I wrote in an upsetting state of mind. It was hard to share that with the world. But that’s what I do and it’s my career so I had to.
The album sounds like a girl’s diary – personal, yet relatable. Was that intentional?
It was for sure intentional. All of the songs I write are about personal experiences that I’ve been through. I don’t really write about fictional events.
What went into the making of each track of the album?
I wanted to make sure the album was very versatile. There’s one thing that I absolutely can’t stand and that’s when someone makes an album and every single song sounds the exact same. We can’t do that. We have some songs that are gangster-thug tracks and I have some songs that are really dancey like “The Dark Side” or “XO”, then there’s songs where you just sit and cry. I wanted to make sure there’s a bit of everything so that listening to the album would be an emotional journey. It wouldn’t be a CD you play just when you’re happy or just when you’re going through a break up. It’s one of those “anytime” CDs.
The Game – Does that refer to something specific like the music industry or are you applying it to different aspects of life?
I think it’s just life itself right now especially because everything that I’m going through – it seems like a game almost because I have to strategize, play out things and think things through. I win some; I lose some so metaphorically it was a game to me.
You work with some great Canadian talent and share the stage with some as well. How has your Canadian identity shaped the way you work and make music?
I think it helps a lot. Every time I tweet something, people are like, “Canada, woooh.” People are very proud to have a lot of amazing artists from Canada and I feel very proud to be one of those artists…I think that it’s very important, considering a lot of music is based out of the US. Everyone has the stereotypical, “you go to Hollywood to be a musician”, but there is amazing musicians absolutely everywhere.
Being discovered on YouTube, do you think that it is this generation’s talent scout?
For sure because of the amount of success stories that have come out of YouTube whether it’s Justin Bieber or Rebecca Black even or that young girl [Maria Aragon] who sang the Lady Gaga song and got the opportunity to perform with Lady Gaga. It’s just amazing that people can use a website on the Internet as an outlet for their talent. I’m very glad I got to grow up in a time with Youtube because I owe my career to it.
Your rendition of Justin Bieber’s “One Less Lonely Girl” was uploaded in January of 2010. Since that song and your discovery you’ve done music videos, the album is out, and you’re touring – how crazy is that?
It’s unbelievable actually. I posted a few YouTube videos when I was fourteen or fifteen. I thought nothing of it and deleted my account and years later Justin Bieber was just starting off in his music career and I thought it would be funny to take one of his songs, rewrite a girl’s version of it and put it on YouTube just as a joke. I didn’t mean anything serious by it and it completely blew up and I got a record deal because of it.
You’re pretty up-to-date with social media. What’s the funniest comment you’ve seen from a fan
I love when people post that parents are singing my songs. People post that their teachers sing my songs and that their parents walk around the house dancing to my music and it just makes me laugh because I can actually mentally picture that.