The advent of social media has successfully ended the monopoly of music labels, giving the power back to the audience. Thankfully, fresh talent can find their audience by showcasing their skills without being a puppet to a label or restrained by a contract. This digital revolution has already introduced several artists to the music industry in the last few years. Pop singer and songwriter Lily Jay is one such talent who rose to fame on social media when she was only 17. Since then, Lily has been on a roll, releasing 10 back-to-back hits over the last couple of years.
Lily Jay is a popular name on social media platforms, especially YouTube and Spotify. The young music sensation has over 6 million subscribers on her YouTube channel “Groove with Lily” and enjoys over 3.5 million average monthly listeners on Spotify. Her debut single, “Girl in the City,” was released in May 2019 and became a viral trend on social media, earning over a million views in just a couple of weeks. However, Lily’s real-life story is far removed from the glitz and glamour of the music industry. Coming from a lower-middle-class family in Kansas, Lily has been through several hardships in life to become the star she is today.
Her story starts in a one-bedroom apartment where she lived with 2 other siblings. Her home barely had any place for her to play but had enough space for her dreams. Lily has been passionate about music and dance since childhood. She always wanted to be an actress, but her parents never encouraged her big dreams. At 12, Lily was desperate to join a dancing class, but her parents could not afford it. Several incidents prompted Lily to leave home at 16 and move to New York to work for a modeling agency.
The city introduced her to a fresh wave of challenges but also fulfilled her dreams. In New York, Lily shared an apartment with 8 other girls and often ended up sleeping on the floor. During this time, Lily discovered her passion for music through one of her roommates, an aspiring musician. With all her hard-earned money and savings, Lily enrolled in a music school. Her natural talent was appreciated by many of her coaches, who even suggested she start a music channel on social media.
Lily launched her YouTube channel with her debut track “Girl in the City.” This peppy song is an electronic dance score that reflects her experiences in New York as a young girl full of dreams. She interweaves the beats in the song with the excitement of a teenager who has just started exploring the world on her own. “Girl in the City” became a party anthem at clubs and pubs and is a song for every mood and occasion. With her debut track, Lily officially marked her entry into the music industry. Since then, she has been part of several prestigious tours and worked with A-list artists like DJ Steve, DJ Snake, and Alan Walker.
At 19, Lily already has 5 Billboard chart toppers to her name and is working on rolling out more. Lily wants her music to inspire people to chase their goals, irrespective of their socio-economic status. She believes in narrating aspects of her life through music to motivate people to overcome challenges and pursue their passion.