Betty Who, Red Velvet, Gabbie Hanna, and Mackenzie Ziegler. Names that are well known in today’s world of modern Pop. But the names you really should know are of the two women behind it all. Alina Smith and Elli Moore, together joined as LYRE, are a powerful duo that make the music we know and love, while breaking down the stigma for women artists in a male-dominated industry.
LYRE first met in Nashville, while in pursuit of their initial dreams in Country music until they found clarity within the genre of Pop. As Elli wanted to navigate herself away from Country, Alina wanted to produce Pop music, and their collaboration has achieved much more than a name for them as a powerhouse production team, but also a valuable friendship. Each of their individual skill sets play a vital role within LYRE. Alina’s expertise in producing and engineering, and Elli’s competence of vocal production and artistry earned them their reputation.
When working with a variety of artists, they provide more than just technical services. ‘‘It’s our job as a development team to have conversations, find out what’s going on in their life, listen to what they listen to, and help create art around all of that.’’ Their creative process can vary from artist to artist. ‘‘Sometimes they already have the song and just need help, that’s when we come in. Gabbie Hanna, for example, will have a melody in her head, or wants her song to be named BLANK, and pretty much knows what she wants. We just make it into music. ’’
Hard-work and diligence continues to be a major factor in their success that their gender hasn’t really been an obstacle. ‘‘It was harder in the beginning for us. Someone actually said, ‘You’re so pretty, why are you producing?’ which was belittling, but only made me work harder. I choose not to focus on the negative past experiences or doubts. I just do my work and gender doesn’t have anything to do with it.’’ Alina explained. ‘‘It’s great that we are dissolving the stigma that women can’t compete in this. It’s exhausting to fight but we know we have to keep doing it for women. Sometimes it doesn’t even process to us that we are women, but are engineers, producers, and songwriters. It isn’t until someone brings it up that we are like ‘‘oh wow, we are women!’’ Elli shared.
LYRE inspires others to continue to support and make room for women. They left us with some wise words for aspiring engineers and artists, confidence as a key factor, as well as dedication to one’s craft. As a self-taught engineer, Alina emphasized the importance of using your resources to hone in your skills. ‘‘Use the internet to learn. The traditional path and programs are great, but if that is something that is not available to you, find it online, and keep developing. You can do anything as long as you’re diligent.’’ As an artist, Elli relayed her message of self-confidence, ‘‘Be excited about your work and other people will be too! If you aren’t putting yourself out there or you’re not confident in it, why would other people be? You should be your biggest fan.’’
Be sure to listen to their music, check out the LYRE Pop sample pack available on Splice, and mark your calendars for Elli’s new EP, Confections, to be released on March 11th, 2020!