Writer/Producer Rick Nowels was recently interviewed by Songwriter Universe where he discussed many things including working with Lana Del Rey.
Nowels has worked with Lana on co-writing multiple songs of hers on “Born to Die” and “Ultraviolence.” He also co-wrote and produced the hit single “Young and Beautiful” from The Great Gatsby film and soundtrack.
Below is the part of the interview where Nowels talks about Lana.
DK: It’s very impressive that you’re now having success with one of today’s big stars, Lana Del Rey. How did you hook up with her, and what makes your collaboration work so well?
Nowels: I had seen Lana’s videos when I lived in England in 2010. I knew she had a vision. When we moved back to L.A., Anne Zogby in my manager’s office asked me if I wanted to meet her. I said “of course”. When we met, she was living out of a suitcase between London, New York and Los Angeles, collaborating with different people. She didn’t have a record deal yet, so she had a lot of songs with different writers. I felt completely simpatico with her vision. I love and understand the records that inspired her. The first song we wrote was called “TV in Black & White”. The second song we wrote was “Summertime Sadness”. I felt it was a career song. I realized she was an amazing songwriter and lyricist. When we were recording the song, we wrote “Dark Paradise” in-between takes of “Summertime Sadness”…literally recording one and writing another. It was a very exciting time. That album became Born To Die, which has become an iconic album. I think it has sold 8 million to date.
We continued to write together and wrote “Cola”, “American” and “Body Electric” on Born To Die: The Paradise Edition. I’m really proud of those songs. I love that Lana quotes Walt Whitman. Five of our songs were recorded for the Ultraviolence album. “West Coast” was the first single, and “Shades of Cool” was the second single. She is a one of a kind artist and keeps growing. She’s such a natural writer and singer and has a real vision for who she is and what she wants to put out into the world. I think she will be a future legend.