- Tessa Brainard
Interview: "Love You More" - Kristina Lachaga
Photo Credit: @throughajslens
"Love You More" is such a beautiful song! Can you describe the songwriting process behind it?
Kristina: Thank you so much! Love You More started as a one take voicenote on my phone back in 2016. The lyrics and melody came to me at the same time (which is what usually happens for me) and I barely changed any of the lyrics from that first pass (which is actually pretty rare!). I knew there was something a bit different and special about the song, so I brought the song to my producer, Rich, to work on with me. Love You More grew into the 1st "romance" song I’ve ever released as my producer and I added acoustic guitar accompaniment while sitting on the floor of his bedroom at his Aunt's house. The guitar picking was my producer's idea and I don’t think the song would have the same feeling without that stylistic choice.
How do you know that a song is complete and ready for the world to hear? Is it a gut feeling?
Kristina: We wrote and recorded Love You More in a 2-3 day period, but I didn’t feel it was ready to release at the time. It was quite different than anything else I had (or have) released, but I kept coming back to the song and was performing it live. From performing it live, I knew people were connecting with it. I was definitely set on eventually releasing it, but kept sitting on it. In 2019/2020, I had Rich add percussion to the track and then in 2023…I finally felt it was ready to share with the world. I had it mastered by Nathan Dantzler at The Hit Lab because I loved the way he mastered Niall Horan’s Flicker album and Love You More has a similar vibe. It was kind of meant to be that I hadn’t released it because in the summer of 2022 Rich passed away unexpectedly and this was one of the last songs I had worked on with him. I’m really glad I kept holding onto it…the song holds a lot more meaning to me now.
Over the years you have done a lot of amazing work to spread an anti-bullying message to kids and teens. Why is this work important to you?
Kristina: I was bullied in elementary and middle school. The biggest mistake I made was never telling anyone. Instead, I held everything in that I was going through. I found my voice through performing and through following my heart’s dream. The anti-bullying concert tour that I was part of visited 150 schools across the country and it was such an honor to share my story with thousands of kids and teens. After the shows, we would receive messages from the students on social media telling us how much it meant to them to hear we had gone through the same things they were going through and that we were able to overcome these challenges. I hope the tour that we did helped them feel less alone and see a brighter future for themselves.
Besides "Love You More," what is your favorite song to sing?
Kristina: Out of my original songs? Definitely “No Doubt.” I always end my set with it. It is so high-energy and really gets a crowd going. It’s the perfect way to end a show. I also love performing “Got That Magic” - it’s one of my unreleased songs. If we’re talking about covers during a concert then definitely “Tell Me You Love Me” (Demi Lovato, but NOTD’s remix version), “The Middle” (Zedd, Maren Morris and Gray), “Symphony” (Clean Bandit and Zara Larsson), and Clarity (Zedd and Foxes). They all really fit my voice and performance style and they’re all songs I wish were mine! I’m also really loving “Red Flags” by Mimi Webb…but I’d have to change the key!
Photo Credit: @throughajslens
You are known as “The Girl With The Big Pink Heart™." Where does this come from and what does it mean to you?
Kristina: Back in 2010, I went to Justin Bieber’s concert in Trenton, NJ. It was his first arena tour! During the entire concert I was holding a big pink heart poster. At the end of the concert, the lights went up in the arena and he asked, “Who wants to be my ‘Baby?’” and he picked me, “the girl with the big heart”…I don’t think he actually said the word “pink.” After the concert, girls walking by me kept saying, “Oh my gosh, it’s the girl with the big pink heart!” The name totally fits my personality and it was such an amazing feeling to know that you can stand out in a crowd just by being yourself.
If you could talk to your younger self, what advice would you give?
Kristina: You can’t predict the future, but I think your journey is going to turn out even better than you imagine. Be patient, have fun, and don’t get too caught up in your head. You’re going to sing your heart out on stage and meet amazing people and inspire them along the way! You got this :)
Interviewed By Tessa Brainard
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