Liddy Clark achieved countless musical milestones while still in her teens, owing much to her powerful vocals, acting skills, and radiant presence. Since learning to play guitar at age 12, the Plano, Texas-born singer/songwriter has taken the stage at iconic venues throughout the country (including the Country Music Hall of Fame in Nashville), opened for artists like Scotty McCreery and Joe Nichols, performed in private VIP rooms for Chris Stapleton and Jake Owen, and at age 14 received a personal invitation to sing at Loretta Lynn’s Ranch. Having devoted her young life to developing her songcraft, the 20-year-old artist now delivers her debut EP Testing the Waters: a selection of fresh yet timeless songs, uniquely arranged to showcase her beautifully nuanced, indie-pop-inspired take on country music.
A magnetic live performer known for her force-of-nature energy, Clark started working regularly as the Liddy Clark Band when she was 16. She steadily amassed a dedicated fanbase, boosted by support from major outlets like Radio Disney Country. In 2017 she performed at the iHeart Country Music Summit at the Country Music Hall of Fame, an event whose personal highlights included crossing paths with country legend Garth Brooks (who took time out in the Hall of Fame’s green room to give Clark advice and encouragement both before and after her performance). Furthermore, Clark was recently selected as an iHeart Radio Digital Artist of the Month, and has performed at the iHeart Radio Live Sessions in New York City, taking the same stage previously graced by such renowned artists as Neil Diamond. And in one of her latest triumphs, Clark contributed a bright and shimmering version of the Christmas carol “Do You Hear What I Hear?” to Country Faith Christmas, Vol. 2 (a Country Faith compilation sold exclusively at Cracker Barrel stores), joining the likes of Carrie Underwood, Darius Rucker, and Kelsea Ballerini on the album’s tracklist.
Now a sophomore at the University of Southern California, where she’s a dean’s list student at the Thornton School of Music, Clark plans to follow up her first project, Testing the Waters (released in 2018) with two more EPs over the coming year. With each new piece of music she releases, her aim is to keep on deepening her intimate connection with her listeners. “I love hearing stories from other people about how they’ve related to my music,” says Clark. “Like with ‘Painted By Numbers,’ I got an Instagram comment from a girl who said it made her feel like there was someone else out there who knew what she was going through. For me one of the greatest things about music is when you hear a song and it gives you a feeling of completeness—it just fits into your life in this perfect way,” she continues. “My hope for my music is that it gives people that same kind of feeling.”
We sat down with Clark in-between her studies to catch up in a Rapid Fire Round interview- check it out below!
Favorite venue to play? If no favorite, what is your dream venue to play? The Country Music Hall of Fame was fantastic, had a great sound system and overall vibe.
When and where do you do your best writing?
Always when I’m busy doing something else! I feel like I’ll get distracted from everyday tasks like driving or doing laundry and end up with a lyric or melody in my head.
What is the best advice you’ve ever been given about working in the music industry?
Always treat other people the way you want to be treated, whether they’re the janitor or the CEO. I feel like that’s incredibly important in this industry when fame and power are always fluctuating, it’s important to be kind to other people.
What’s your most or least favorite thing about being on the road?
My favorite thing is getting to try new restaurants and learn about different local cultures. My least favorite thing is not seeing my dogs for extended periods of time.
Which of your songs gets the best crowd response?
It really depends on the crowd, but I always love the response of playing “I Hope You Dance” for people. Everyone always sings along, and it’s cool to see other people dancing to such a classic song.
If you had to choose between a private plane or your own yacht, which would you choose?
I want to say yacht, but I feel like I’d use a private plane more often. So definitely the plane.
Where do you turn for inspiration or comfort when life in the industry gets overwhelming?
My family, my friends, and my dogs. I also try to take breaks from music or performing when it gets to be too much, so when I do come back it’s nice and refreshing.
What’s the one song (from any artist) you wish you had written or sung first?
“Vienna” by Billy Joel. It’s my favorite song of all time and it always manages to calm me down when I’m feeling anxious or worried.
What is the most memorable thing a fan has done for you?
A few years ago one fan made a huge banner saying “Welcome Liddy Clark” when I came to play her high school prom in Oregon and it was the sweetest thing, honestly made my whole night.
Which is your favorite holiday, and what do you do on that day?
Thanksgiving, watch football and eat really good homemade pie with my family in Texas.