Hey, I'm Lights and I'll be answering your Q's and just generally rambling about things. My new record, Little Machines just came out yesterday, and my video for the first single "Up We Go" is also out and features a rad one-take elevator ride. The Little Machines tour kicks off in October. I'm also the 2014 Hard Rock Pinktober ambassador and we’ll be raising awareness for breast cancer research and funding this fall. Ask me about all this and whatever else!


EDIT: Thank you for all of your questions, I could sit here all night responding, you guys are UNREAL. I have to run to a signing tonight (yay album release!) but I might come back and answer more later. Come hang out on the tour this fall, seriously, these new songs are so much fun to play and I can't wait to share that experience with you. Until next time...MUCH LOVE.

Comments: 1733 • Responses: 36  • Date: 

Eriskay341 karma

Hey Lights, long time fan!

Slayed a dragon for you! As per request by /u/jeremythebug.

  • What would you do if you knew you could not fail?

lights_alot289 karma


Hhumerus229 karma

Where did you come up with the name for your little girl?

lights_alot363 karma

We played the PNE last year in Vancouver, it was a wicked night, 7k people turned up and that was the night I told my band I was pregs. I mistook a giant ferris wheel for a rocket.... on stage in front of everyone..... became the joke of the night. My sister said, "hey, that's a good name". Suited her so well so that was that.

PlumDrop215 karma

Does Beau call you Lights? If not, what does he call you?

lights_alot330 karma

Lights! He never knew me before I changed my name so for him to call me Valerie is strange for him.

Frodobaconzz162 karma

I have 2 questions and a comment.

  1. Do you realize that you are a goddess incarnate?
  2. How has having a baby changed your life?

Comment: BC west coast fo lyfe! We welcome you with open arms.

lights_alot216 karma

  2. I am worried about so much less, you tend to cut the fat and just worry about the things that need to be thought of. Everything else is just a moment to be enjoyed. Really made me realize how much useless worrying I used to do.

ps THANKS :D Love the west coast! #goodair

kraven420148 karma

When you're travelling by plane, is your ticket issued on LIGHTS/MRS?

lights_alot408 karma

It's sometimes just LIGHTSPOXLEITNERBOKAN and the unfortunate soul that has to call me to the gate on the loud speaker hates LIFE.

swagsmoker420145 karma

Do you still play WoW at all? How excited are you for Warlords of Draenor?

lights_alot296 karma

I have actually taken WAY too long off from WoW, I think it's been a year and a half since I logged in. I've been spending a lot more time console gaming, BUT that said, Warlords of Draenor is giving me dat itch. Looks amazing. #BLIZZ

HowlDaebak107 karma

Lights! Is Jeremy still your bug?

jeremythebug290 karma


lights_alot231 karma


lights_alot114 karma

Jeremy is and always will be my bug!

christopheralen96 karma


My (now) girlfriend and I had the pleasure of meeting you in Chicago back in 2010. The shared love for your music was one of the biggest factors that brought us together and for that, we are forever thankful. It put the biggest smile on our faces when we saw the Yoda finger puppet we gifted you with on your Video Blog #37. Yoda voice Serve you well Yoda did, we hope.

Question wise…the creative direction you chose for your previous album Siberia was very brave & daring, risking the alienation of a big part of your fan base with a more ‘grungy’ & “dirty” sound compared to The Listening. On that note, based off early initial reactions, are there any misconceptions from your fans (or reviewers in general) regarding the creative direction of Little Machines that you would like to further clear up?

The continual evolution of both your music and self have been nothing short of inspiring. We look forward to watching you perform here in November :)

raptosaurus189 karma

What is this, a picture for ants?

lights_alot302 karma

It needs to be at least 2x this size!!

EchoesOfElysium95 karma

LIGHTS, you are my favorite female musician and your music has really helped with my depression and anxiety. What were the influences that led you to being a musician and creating the image you have?

lights_alot132 karma

That is really amazing to hear, that's tough to go through. I've been in that place and it's not easy. Music pulled me through some of those hard times, especially around the time I was writing for The Listening.

It's those moments of reflection that create the skeleton of a song, looking in and figuring out what you need to say. When you can exorcise that out of your system for a time it's win win.

lightsyfan89 karma

Hi Lights! Judging by your posts and pictures, it seems like you have an amazing relationship with your husband. What is your best relationship advice? Thanks! Can't wait to see you in Vancouver (again!)

lights_alot179 karma

Trust! Copious amounts of trust. You're untouchable if you have that mutual confidence in a relationship. And you should see your partner as an equal, so important. See you in Van!

yellowmixer79 karma

Since you and Beau are huge fans of Starbucks, what is your "signature drink?" :)

lights_alot150 karma

grande sugar-free-caramel iced coffee with lots of milk... I always say "super pale please". Love my pale coffee.

armypantsnflipflops64 karma

Loving the new single! Question: have you ever felt star struck when meeting another musician or actor?

lights_alot173 karma

Thank you! And yes, I cried when I met Phil Collins. It was horrible.

bassboyjulio18254 karma

Hey Lights! I am a huge fan, I've seen you 5 times in the last 3 years and actually have front row seats to your upcoming tour! You are such a huge inspiration to me personally both musically and as someone who fully accepts the person they are without fault. You are an incredible role model to young people everywhere about being true to yourself. My question is: What finally pushed you to take a chance in the music industry? How did you get started? I'm at a crossroads in my life right now where I have hundreds of songs written but I've never done anything with them publicly. If you could give me one piece of advice what would it be? Thanks for being awesome and I can't wait to see you live again!!

lights_alot82 karma

There is no textbook way to make it happen for yourself. When I was starting out it wasn't beyond me to think someone "influential" would walk by my house and hear me singing and BOOM I'd be famous. But that's not how it works out and I could never have predicted how it would work. What matters is that you're perfecting your craft, finding your place and slowly building what is ultimately YOUR art. I believe if you do that AND take all the opportunities that present themselves, no matter how weird they may seem (I met my manager at a walmart photo shoot!) then it will happen.

OmfgTim50 karma


Little Machines is a phenomenal album that really shows maturity, and even evolution, in your music. It was nice to sit down, relax, and really listen to the album. "Don't Go Home Without Me" is a track that stands out to me because it sounds so serene and sincere; one of my favourites from the album.

A theme that runs deep in your albums is about growing up, and the joys of childhood; like Pretend (The Listening), Running with the Boys (Little Machines). So, what is your favourite childhood memory?

Thank you,

Tim :)

lights_alot88 karma

This is a great question! I'm so happy you recognized the nostalgic sentiment of some of the songs, I definitely reached into my past while writing Little Machines for that innocence of imagination to remind myself how much I really enjoy music.

One of my favourite memories is actually documented in the first verse of Running with the Boys! We had a little imaginary forest town called "Scrawny Town" when we went to our family camp. I was vice president, the whole town was built around this tiny scrawny tree which we built a shrine around. We had a national anthem and even a latrine...(don't ask). Now if I were to go back it would just be a boring forest. Being a kid was so much more fun!

Notorious_TED36 karma

Hey Lights! Long time fan of yours. I always looked up to your ability to play different instruments so well.

These days I work for a music education non profit that teaches kids "modern band" instead of concert band, jazz band etc. This means guitar, keyboard, drums, etc. We also focus on under privileged inner city schools that have had their music programs cut.

What's your take on the current state of music education?

lights_alot64 karma

I don't know any kind of stats re: music programs getting cut, but I do know that it seems to be one of the first things that gets the boot when funding is low, which is extremely unfortunate. Music is so important for young people, it helps organize your thoughts and feels at a young age, it's cathartic, and potentially a path for many! Something so influential that is sometimes overlooked.

Leggerrr35 karma

Are you a fan of anime? And if so what are some of your favorites?

lights_alot176 karma

Attack on Titan is a new favourite! Long time fan of Bleach and Full Metal.

iruvtofu33 karma

After working with Kaskade and Swanky Tunes, do you see yourself working in the EDM scene with any other artists in the future?

lights_alot64 karma

Sure! If the right song and opportunity come, I'm there. It's all about loving what you're working on, regardless of genre. Might be something new in the works as we speak....

spray_gov31 karma

Lights! Where can I find nirnroot IRL?

lights_alot66 karma

All I can recommend is low lands.... swamps? lake edges?

fantasma430 karma

With "day one" when was the decision to make it lyric-less and what's your personal feel/interpretation about it?

lights_alot57 karma

Day One was literally the recorded jam session from first day I sat down to collab with Holy Fuck. That helped determine the direction of the record, and in those moments we were so immersed in creation, it was a great 10 minutes.

victoriamarina28 karma

Will Lance make another comeback?

lights_alot55 karma

Lance LIVES. Constant state of comeback, every time I toss him 5 fresh crickets.

theMightyLich25 karma

Despite the obvious electronic influences in your music, what are some other, surprising musical influences for Little Machines and you in general?

Also, the new album is fabulous and probably a contender for my album of the year, keep up the good work!

lights_alot50 karma

The Clash, RATM, Mars Volta, Drake, Kanye, lots ! There are such great musical moments I've had with these bands. Whatever can create a catalyst moment for inspiration I consider an influence on any project.

Tazz31119 karma

Hi Lights, What's your favorite song from Beau's band blessthefall? Just curious :D

lights_alot53 karma

Promised One's is in my head a lot. And 40 Days! And Open Water... ;)

britt_thehuman17 karma

Hi Lights! I absolutely LOVE Little Machines. Lyrically and musically the best work you have put out. It kinda just takes me somewhere. I know it was a bit of a struggle this time to write it. When you were completely blocked, what did it feel like when you finally got something to work?

lights_alot26 karma

Thank you!

Ironically some of the best stuff was written when I was blocked, I just didn't know it. For example, Muscle Memory (which seems to be a sleeper favourite now that I'm seeing people's reactions to the album) I hated when I first wrote it. I just wasn't feeling it. Later on when inspiration freed up and after my team yelled at me that it was a good song, I reworked it a bit and it's one of my favs. And that felt really good!

b3ccuh16 karma

what about being in the earth ship helped you write songs?

lights_alot44 karma

The writing process for Little Machines involved needing a nice fresh environment, a change of scenery from the studio room I'd been writing in for a while and feeling pretty dry from. The earthship is a completely off the grid, carbon zero home, my recording rig was powered by solar! It was such a cool experience to be off the grid. The surroundings were otherworldly. There was a giant tarantula on my window. It was just where I needed to be to zero in on creativity and inspiration. If you haven't seen the blog, here it is! Such a cool trip. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ze8px9X0BQw

fun fact, Portal, Meteorites and Don't Go Home Without me were written there.

meggietron13 karma


lights_alot25 karma

That is an amazing story, you're very strong! Power to you in your journey, I know you'll have a great one.

I wrote Portal, which started as a poem, in a very frustrated, uninspired time. I felt like I lost my knack for writing, I was angry it wasn't coming easily, sort of like I was losing my purpose. It was sort of a cry for something sure during a time that I had a lot of questions.

heyyouguuuuuys12 karma

My friends say they see you around town a lot, how do you feel when a fan recognizes you and comes to say Hi?

lights_alot21 karma

I feel SO COOL sunglasses emoji

seriously. Makes me feel like my music has had an effect somewhere, and that's a great feeling.

b3ccuh11 karma

There are a lot of fresh 80's vibes on Little Machines. Were there any specific vintage synth artists that helped inspire the sound?

lights_alot19 karma

I'm always heavily inspired by new wave, from New Order to Human League, to Pet Shop Boys and Kate Bush. In terms of recent stuff, I was loving the vibes Com Truise and XXYYXX were putting out, with all that down tempo, lush synth stuff. Didn't hurt that we had access to Moog voyager/Juno-60/prophets for the recordings!

BeyondDaGrave11 karma

Was the "Up We Go" music video your idea?

lights_alot12 karma

My only initial idea was to do a one-take video that involved a lot of chaos. Alon, the director, just took that to ANOTHER level. Just slammed a whole lot of random scenarios into an elevator, now that was fun.

moomoopata10 karma

Hi LIGHTS! I have been listening to your music since 2008 I really adore your music and who you are! ♡ I love your cover of joga by Bjork. As a fan of bjork too, I wanted to know how has she influenced you and your music? Cant wait to see you live in NY! ♡ much love

lights_alot14 karma

Bjork DGAF! She doesn't feel she needs to fit her songs into any specific sound or format or length. There's something really creatively freeing about that, she's amazing.

Verreaux10 karma

Hey Lights, thanks for doing this AMA! My question is if you've felt songwriting process has changed since The Listening and Siberia? If so, how?

lights_alot15 karma

My writing style is generally the same, just improved upon (hopefully!) but one thing new on Little Machines was my experimentation with poetry. For a stretch I wrote a poem a night in attempt to free up my mind lyrically, and the first track on the album, Portal, is a direct result of that! Poetry to song.

ReignShadow718 karma

Lights have you ever considered voice acing? If so who would you love to voice?

lights_alot18 karma

I would love to voice act someday! I actually voiced a cute character (the teacher) in a PSA a few years back, so fun! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ScL6QNVDnTY

victoriamarina8 karma

What is on the typical Light's dinner menu ?

lights_alot24 karma


kthrnkat4 karma

What is one of the biggest struggles you have overcome?

lights_alot24 karma


TeamLIGHTS4 karma

LIGHTS! Big fan here, my question for you is when you sing in the shower, do you often sing your own songs? Or songs from other artists?

lights_alot11 karma

I always feel awkward singing in the shower to my own songs, it's usually songs that are annoyingly stuck in my head and I fit random words I'm thinking at that moment into the melodies because I usually don't know the words.

victoriamarina4 karma

Where is somewhere you haven't traveled yet but wish to?

lights_alot8 karma