She’s not old enough to legally drink, but Carlie Hanson is already making serious waves as a musician. The rural Wisconsin native is currently singing her way around the United States with iconic artists Troye Sivan and Kim Petras, while her Spotify page has reached over 1 million listens per month, and is rapidly growing! Her summer-pop tracks are refreshingly addictive beats worthy of nostalgic road trips spent reminiscing about your first kiss. Not only does Carlie have talent, but she is working towards using her platform to speak out about issues that are important to her, such as mental health and the LGBTQ+ community. Check out her latest track Toxins here.
You’re currently making your way around the US on your first ever tour with Troye Sivan and Kim Petras. How has it been so far?
Being on tour with Troye Sivan and Kim Petras has been such a crazy experience so far. It’s insane to me that this is really what my life is now. Meeting fans and connecting with them is my favorite part about it all! I’m so excited for what’s to come and so excited for the rest of this tour.
It’s incredible how far you’ve come in the past year. When did you first realise that you wanted to have a career in music?
I first realized I wanted to be a musician when Justin Bieber started posting YouTube videos online. I must’ve been about 9 or 10 years old when I saw him singing covers and how much attention he was getting from it. I thought to myself “Wow, that’s what I want to do!” And that’s pretty much where it all began.
What inspires you as an artist?
What inspires me most as an artist is seeing other young people just like me doing what they want to do, with no care in the world about what other people might have to say about it. Billie Eilish, Khalid, Lil Skies, Yung Blud, and King Princess are just a few young artists I look up to in the music industry. They all have so much talent and crazy confidence at such a young age and that really inspires me. The youth is taking over, man!!
Some dream collabs of mine are Justin Bieber, Post Malone, Frank Ocean, any member from One Direction, and Dave Grohl! I have thousands more, but those are definitely at the top.
Your track Goodbye was featured on the Netflix film Sierra Burgess Is A Loser. How does it feel to have your music featured on such a prominent film?
Having Goodbye on the SBIAL soundtrack is such a surreal feeling. I never thought in a million years I would have my own song on a soundtrack. I’m so grateful!
What’s the most recent thing (or person) that you’ve had to say goodbye to?
The last people I had to say goodbye to were my best friends from back home. I brought them out to a show in Minneapolis, and we had to say goodbye after celebrating such an amazing night with them. I’m so glad they got to see the Bloom tour.
You’ve previously spoken out about your sexuality. How important do you think it is to have positive role models for LGBTQ+ youth?
It’s so important to have positive role models for the LGBTQ community. My older sister is lesbian, so I grew up seeing/hearing what it was like for somebody to be scared of what others might think of you just because of your sexuality. She would sometimes bring up that she was scared her friends, or our mom or dad wouldn’t accept her for who she was, but since I was young (and still to this day) I never understood why somebody would care about who YOU want to hold hands with haha. And my sister helped a lot with teaching me that it’s okay to be who you are and to like who you want to like. If I didn’t have my older sister growing up, I probably wouldn’t have come out about my sexuality a few months ago. I would probably be scared to this day. That’s why it’s important to have role models just like my older sister, Cassie, so we, the LGBTQ community, can feel safe about opening up.
Tell us something that most people wouldn’t know about you.
Something most people wouldn’t know about me is, I used to BMX at the skatepark all the time from ages 11-16
What are some issues that are really important to you?
Issues that are important to me are social media and how much it has an effect on our generations’ mental health. Mental health, in general, is an issue that is very important to me. I also, of course, want to help the LGBTQ community all that I can. Another issue I’ve really been thinking a lot about since I moved to LA is the homelessness. I really want to do all that I can to help feed the hungry/homeless and help support them with a place to sleep at night. There are many other issues that are important to me, like sexual assault and women’s rights. It’s almost impossible to read the news or go on Twitter and not see that another woman has been sexually assaulted. There are many issues in the world that I would like to help with.
Any plans for an upcoming EP?
I am going to be releasing an EP very very soon!
Photography: Lloyd Galbraith @lloydgalbraith
Artist: Carlie Hanson @carliehanson
Make-up: Calvin Chan @pinkslutskill
Interview: Sara Nicolette
Jackets: Venia @veniacollection