Juliette Reilly is a pop-timist through and through. Armed with empowering lyrics and expertly produced anthems, the independent singer/songwriter is steadily carving out a space for herself as one of the industry’s sunniest voices.
Reilly’s career took flight when “Battle Cry,” a moving song she wrote for a YouTube series, went viral. Her equally poignant ballad “I Am” attracted the attention of both the Red Shoe Movement - an organization dedicated to raising awareness about domestic abuse – and Project Semicolon. In 2016, her accompanying I Am EP charted on the Billboard Heatseekers and iTunes charts. Since then the philanthropically minded artist has written songs for similar groups and has had more luck charting on various iTunes charts with releases such as her 2018 soundtrack album, My Virtual Escape. Her songs have been featured on shows such as MTV’s Teen Mom, HBO's Stargirl & Pretty Little Liars: Original Sin and in ads for Target, Bed Bath & Beyond and Victoria's Secret. Reilly now speaks directly to an audience that is almost 400,000 strong and includes more than 175,000 followers on her active YouTube channel.
Thank you for taking this interview! How has the New Year been for you so far as an artist?
2022 so far has been a really pivotal season for me as an artist & writer. I've been balancing projects for tv/film/ads, my artist project, and writing my first musical. I'm happiest when I'm the most busy, so it's been great.
Can you tell us how you've transformed from the beginning to now as an artist?
When I first started out, I think I did what a lot of new artists do and copy the style of other artists I admired. I feel like over time, I've been able to define what "my" voice & sound are.
How did you come up with your latest project?
My next release is a song called "Playing House," which I wrote about the perils of dating in your twenties - when seemingly no one wants to settle down.
Where are you from originally?
I'm originally from Berkeley Heights, NJ.
Where do you live now?
About a year ago I left Nashville, where I had been living for almost 3 years, and moved to Manhattan. There's no place like NYC.
Do you think where you live impacts how your music is made?
Where I live definitely impacts my music. Nashville is really where I learned how to be a real songwriter... you're just enveloped in this insane pool of musical talent there. When I was living in my childhood bedroom in NJ, I was writing in a vacuum. I think it's important to find collaborators, wherever you are. The new wave of virtual sessions certainly makes this easier.
What was the inspiration to make music your career?
My aunt is a Broadway performer, and has always been my greatest inspiration.
How do you want to shape your career?
Social media, however toxic it can be, has made it possible for artists to perform, market, collaborate, scale and connect from the comfort of their own homes. My goal is to continue creating a balance between writing for sync, my artist project, and musical theatre. I'm not someone who's ever really desired to tour - I'm an introvert and a homebody. So the tv/film music world is definitely something I'm digging deeper into.
Do you work on a tight timeline always or do you go with the flow when it comes to your music?
I'm a person who loves structure. I've got that Virgo Type A energy. So working on a tight timeline or within some kind of parameters is super helpful for me. However, as a creative person, I'm learning to go with the flow more. That's usually when the most unexpected inspiration strikes.
How did your latest title of your music come to be?
The last single I released is called "New Best Friend," which is a collaboration with tv/film music legend Matt Bronleewe (aka UNSECRET). When you're writing for tv, it's crucial that the title conveys exactly what the song is about. This is a fun one... It's actually going to be used as a theme on the upcoming final season of The Ellen Show.
Is it hard to let go of the music when it is done?
I'm a big fan of Jack Conte's idea of "Working to Publish" in today's world. I try not to be too precious about every single detail, because I'm inherently such a perfectionist and would otherwise never release anything.
Do you feel an emotional attachment with your music?
Of course, I feel a huge emotional attachment to my music. Writing a song, even if it's not directly taken from my own experience, is a deeply personal process. It's very hard for me to separate myself from my work, because it feels like an extension of me.
How would you describe your music in one word to someone who hasn't listened to it yet?
Where do they go to listen NOW?
Spotify, Apple Music, anywhere music is sold or streamed :)
What has been the best fan reaction to your music?
I've had a couple fans request my handwriting for tattoos of my lyrics. That really blew me away. Especially because I have horrible handwriting.
Is there anything exciting coming up for you?
I'm working on a musical adaptation of an indie film that I can't say too much about yet, but I'm super super excited about.
Are you performing the song anywhere LIVE?
I'll be performing a lot in NYC this summer, keep an eye on my socials for details.