Leezy has released her new single titled ‘Cocaine Kisses’. Dark with deep introversion and retrospection, ‘Cocaine Kisses’ is a song from someone who lived it. The life is in the lyrics, and they are real. Beautifully crafted with music that sets the mood. I feel the song bursts through near death to find life waiting in the wings. Finding that secret place in all of us and telling us we need to embrace it to let it go.
Musically, the song is a gateway drug into the artist known as Leezy. While I feel the song may be a little on the short side, maybe because I was getting into it on that first listen, I got a sense that the feeling of wanting more is oddly fitting with this song. Not just for the obvious reasons but for the song itself. I listened again. A few times. It became a soundtrack for a time in my life when I needed to hear these lyrics. The music drug me in and forced me to contemplate.
Overall, ‘Cocaine Kisses’ is a song from an artist that gave us a gift. A part of herself. A black heart on her sleeve for the world to see, and heed.
Cocaine Kisses has a dark tone to it. What is the story behind the song?
Cocaine Kisses is special because I started writing it before I got sober, and back then it meant something totally different to me than it does now. I was partying a lot and going on these big benders. I was super high one night, and I was kissing this guy… and I thought “Cocaine kisses make it better,” and then I was like OH! SONG TITLE! It felt sexy and fun, and was very much a glamorized telling of everything I was actually going through.
When I hear the song now, I think it really speaks to how seductive addiction can be, especially with how normalized party culture is. Social drug use can make us feel deeply connected to people, but in reality, it’s all a show; when you pull back the curtain, everyone is seeking an escape from something. So I think it’s an important song to share because it highlights what I’m sure a lot of young people might be feeling– whether they’re an addict or not.
How has your journey to sobriety affected your music and overall style?
It was a big fear of mine while I was in treatment that getting sober meant becoming boring. I was afraid that I would lose all of my creative ability… Like I thought it was the drugs that made me cool. In hindsight– crazy. My mind is so clear now, and my ideas are more thoughtful and purposeful. My sobriety motivates my music and vice versa.
As a recovering addict, I can relate myself to the difficulty of maintaining sobriety. How do you stay focused and what do you do to get you out of those “low points”?
Congratulations on your recovery! One of the most difficult parts of getting sober, for me, was all of the emotions that came rushing in once I didn’t have anything to numb them with. Learning how to process those emotions, and to cope with them healthily, is probably the hardest thing I’ve ever done – and I’m still working on it every day. With time and practice, it gets easier. I still go to therapy every week, and I go to meetings when I’m really struggling. Low points will always come, so I’d say the best thing for me has been focusing on staying present– enjoying the good days, and letting the not-so-good days pass.
Who are your musical influences?
I’m super inspired by thoughtful lyricists like Elliott Smith, Beth Gibbons, Lana Del Rey, Thom Yorke, Jim Morrison… I listen to a lot of different genres of music so I feel like whatever I’m into at the time I feel influenced by. Like right now I’m really obsessed with trip-hop, so I’ve been writing a lot of down-tempo stuff.
You have already crafted your own sound musically. Where do you see your music going career-wise?
Thank you! I’m planning to do a lot more live performances in the future. Aside from that, all I can really do now is keep writing music that I love for all the people who love it too.
What’s next for you and what are your plans?
I am very excited for what’s to come! My next release will be my first full-length album. It tells the story of everything I went through while I was in active addiction – messy relationships, self-loathing, processing trauma, comforting my inner-child, experiencing fear, guilt and shame… It’s all finished and ready to go, and I can’t wait to share it with the world. You can stay updated on my TikTok (@ leezy) and my Instagram (@ leezymusic69)!
At just 21 years old, the Chicago-based singer-songwriter exudes a wisdom far beyond her years. Leezy is unable to remember a time when she wasn’t singing — she recalls a musical childhood, surrounded by theater and the arts. She’s kept a daily journal since she was ten years old, always ready to be in touch with her internal dialogue.
At first, Leezy was resistant to the idea of pursuing music seriously, considering it a refreshing hobby. In a role reversal not experienced by many young creatives, it was actually her mother who encouraged her to consider a professional route, even buying her an electric keyboard. Leezy continued writing and recorded her first song upon arriving in Chicago at age 18.
Following her youth in the Bay Area, Leezy faced (and overcame) a new challenge. Young adulthood proved to be a battlefield of depression and addiction for the artist, and she made the decision to admit herself into treatment. Her time there was healing in more ways than one: not only was Leezy able to receive professional help, she also began to see her music in a new light. From a talent show among other patients to times of introspection during outpatient treatment, Leezy realized that music was, in fact, her calling. Becoming sober at nineteen is a victory in and of itself, and Leezy was ready to dive into the next chapter of her life with enthusiasm.
Now, Leezy has worked to lock in her own sound, never relinquishing the memory of her darker chapters. Managing to incorporate the rock elements of the late 90s and early 2000s into her bright sound, Leezy matches her penchant for the gritty and authentic with her honest stories. She is inspired by the likes of Elliot Smith but speaks to a new generation with her unique life experience, hoping to make listeners feel less alone in their individual journeys, particularly other young people.
Her latest single, “Sierra,” is a hopeful, dramatic ode to the resilience of the human spirit and will be available everywhere on March 11th. With vocals reminiscent of Lana Del Rey, honesty in the style of Billie Eilish, and a full backing band to bring everything to life, “Sierra” is Leezy’s most vulnerable work yet — an impressive feat, considering her existing catalogue.
In her own words, Leezy describes the track as a chronicle of her journey from rock bottom to sobriety, an accomplishment for which she recently acknowledged the two-year mark. “The biggest thing is that the song is about my own personal journey, and that’s where I drew inspiration from — but regardless of if you’ve struggled with addiction, everyone has struggled with something, and everyone can relate to the feeling of wanting to get better.”
She shares that once she got sober, a flurry of emotions came flooding in. The song spilled out of her, almost organically, in a moment she describes as a cathartic process. “Sierra” is a reminder of how far the young artist has come and an exciting window into all the stories she still has to share.
Leezy is continuing to hone her craft and looks forward to the day she and her piano can connect with audiences face to face. She is a singer-songwriter crafting a world of dream-pop — and inviting the listener in to spend time with her there.
After all, she says, there’s nothing better than a Hollywood ending.
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