Monday, February 24, 2020

INTERVIEW: Lou Roy, Horse Girl, Examines Queer Adolescence in "Ari Knew Before Me"

You ever have one of those moments when you look back on your childhood and you're like, "Oooooooooooooooooooooh! Now I get it!!!" 

That's the subject of self-described Neutral Good horse girl Lou Roy's gorgeous "Ari Knew Before Me." I'll let you dig into it. While most of us think of those moments fondly or with a laugh, Roy treats it with the gravity it perhaps deserves. It's from the EP Your Friend, which Roy released on Sony back in November. Roy was a good sport about my questions concerning the video.

Photo: Silken Weinberg

 First off, please introduce yourself to our readers! What do you think are the most important things to know about you? 

Hi! I’m Lou Roy, a Neutral Good making music in LA who wants the best for myself and the people around me. I am getting in Monster Trucks and learning to care for myself as I care for other people.

This song feels like such a universal experience for queer folks, though we often discuss it humorously. What prompted you to take the approach you did? 

I remember when I finally came around to the idea of being openly queer after having suppressed it for so long, and among the many feelings all swirling around in me at once, there was a distinct feeling of grief. Grief for what could’ve been had I had the language and courage to express my feelings. So I guess there’s a large part of me that is able to laugh at it now, but when it was happening I definitely wrote this song to help articulate and express that specific grief.

Tell us a little more about the video. Where was it filmed and what's the story behind it? What was your favorite part of filming? 

The video stars my good friend and fellow artist Ren Farren, who played my dream girl. It was shot at an equestrian facility in Shadow Hills, CA on my dad’s 2007 Handy Cam. I grew up with horses and am a horse girl forever and always– therefore horses represent a pure, unfiltered, inseparable part of me. Expressing that part of me in conjunction with the content of the song helps me to accept that my queerness runs just as deep as any truth I hold about myself– no matter how long I chose to ignore it out of fear.

I didn’t have the budget for a full on video so I just got an amazingly talented cinematographer (Powell Robinson) and let him run wild. He’s got such an amazing eye and managed to bring every emotional aspect of the song to every shot – always on purpose, always with the intention to tell the story. It was edited by filmmaker Anna Zlokovic who arranged these hyper-emotional shots to form a narrative: a story of a missed connection and a cute sexy dream of what coulda been.

I also appreciate the early 90s vibes -- any particular inspiration for that?

That’s that Sony handy cam vibe baby! Sick as hell! I wanted the karaoke style lyrics and have Alex Familian to thank for putting that together.

Lou Roy -- Official, Twitter, Instagram

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