Lanz Pierce is on Her Comeup
Lanz Pierce is living proof that magic still exists in New York. Adding a whole new edge to the hip-hop game, Lanz Pierce talks her forward-thinking merch that acts more as a fashion line, her new concept album Los City, and running into Dave Chapelle at one of her vibrant shows. The Queens native has already done so much, but she still has so much in store. Peep the full interview below, and be sure to check out her new album Los City.
What’s life been like since debuting your fresh new album Los City?
It’s been really exciting and really freeing because it’s a concept album. It took two years create and it went through many changes as I have. I haven’t told anybody this, but it was originally going to be titled ‘Wild Card’ – it’s been a total journey full of personal life changes and others, but now I feel a sense of freedom. I did a recent show at Esther and Carol and I really love that space, and like, Dave Chappelle had popped up. It totally felt like one of those crazy moments where you are performing in your own city and it feels like it’s a secret that world is just now discovering but I looked out at my core people, my fans, who know all the words and are wearing my Los City hoodies and it was insane. It feels really good to realize New York is where I come from and that it’s supporting me and the energy of my comeup.
Totally. It’s like that saying: If the city wants you here, it will keep you here. And your last show is proof of the magic that exists only in New York. Like Dave Chappelle just showing up doesn’t happen everywhere, you know?
Right! And Dave Chappelle has been big at that spot but like Esther and Carol is a space that has always honed in on what’s coming up next. I was in the middle of rehearsal before this last show I did and someone tapped me on the shoulder and I turned around it was Usher. I didn’t stop my rehearsal and just kept singing basically at him and he was just like casually ‘hey’ and then after I went up and talked with him a bit and it was just really cool.
That’s nuts! Can you tell me about how it feels to have Los City finally in people’s ears, after two years of working on it, and what breath-life is next for this project?
I push really hard to incorporate my real life and all of my experiences, whether good or bad, in my diary of work, which actually never gets written down but is so present and documented in my mind that then forms itself into a living art piece. Now that it is written down and fully shaped, I can look back at all these stories I remember living through and at the same time look at the things I am currently through and use those as well.
It’s like a yearbook. I mean I look back at my style and vibe and take it, even in brief amounts of time, as testament to my groove and where I found inspiration or expression. I always want to give people music they feel they can put on and play front to back and not have to skip; that provides something for every emotion and experience.
Can you tell me about the image of Lanz Pierce, aesthetically and artistically, and how collaboration plays into the product development of your work i.e. style, visuals?
I love to collaborate and to me: all great things from a collective brain. One of the things I always do is create mood boards. Whether it’s creating in the studio or the beginning stages of a visual, I always begin by looking at the history and archives of pop culture and look at what pieces have already been consumed and liked or hated and I like to take inspiration from the pieces that give me that certain spark or tingle. I also am very committed to not doing everything at once. I’ve realized in order to make anything great or master anything it’s better to do the Andy Warhol thing, which is to find the family of people who are great at what they do, like find the person who is a great graphic designer and then find the person who is a phenomenal aggravator of talent, you know? I’m in total control of my brand but it’s only successful with the awesome collaborative nature of my process.
I recently began creative directing for other artists and brands. I’m working with Lisa Shaller-Goldberg who is one of the forces behind Juicy Couture and Ed Hardy, and they have these cashmere sweaters that are like a simple staple in a wardrobe and they want to make them youthful and they approached me to bring on my aesthetic and vibe to it and I’m directing a shoot for them that I’m extremely excited about.
Speaking of style…your merch. The Los City hoodies are out and with renaissance and demand for merch in this era of streetwear, can we expect a launch of new stuff anytime soon?
1000%. The merch that I’ve designed and that I’m currently designing isn’t made specifically for people who want to wear Lanz Pierce pieces but rather the pieces themselves, the fabric and design choices are fresh and feel good and represent the rebellion and freedom of individuality. I’m designing a new line now and I’m hoping to take a bigger than just merch and work some other people and artists, like my friend Quincy Moore who has this brand called Knowlita and he has this phrase ‘New York or Nowhere’ and I would love the possibility of working with him and other people.
Do you have any planned shows or an upcoming tour or anything?
I have a label called Innovators & Aviators and I really see myself and a couple artists that I have been helping develop work with, becoming our own little movement. My vision is along the lines of the A$AP Mob and Joey Bada$$ and Cinematic Music Group, but with a female perspective leading ship and making it all about the right timing and crew.
Regarding touring, I’ve been in the talks to be support and opening acts of a couple unannounced tours but I’m really excited to get my name out further in NYC and on a tour.
That’s incredible. What is next for Lanz Pierce?
This is a really exciting time for me and it’s like the world has opened its arms in a whole different way. I feel like I’ve been waiting my entire life for this but the timing is right and it feels right. Specifically, now we are in an era where it’s inspiring and important for women to see other women lead and rise up from being underdogs in male-driven fields. With my label and the artists I’m currently supporting as well as Los City and it’s next stages, there’s a lot ahead of me and I couldn’t be more grateful.
Image via Pip Cowley Photography
Stay tuned for more Lanz Pierce vibes.