In a recent interview, two-time Grammy Award winning musician Lauren Daigle opened up about loneliness, how it has affected her life, and the beautiful way that music can create connections between people. The “You Say” singer got personal with her own experiences with loneliness – both before and during the world pandemic – as well as stories from her fans that filled her with hope.
The interview, conducted by WGTS 91.9 radio station, begins with Daigle recalling how the course of her life changed after she released her hit 2018 album “Look Up, Child.” The album won the Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Christian Music Album and spent a record breaking 44 weeks on the top of the Christian albums chart. Practically overnight, Daigle was a worldwide sensation and she began to tour in earnest, traveling for most of the year.
Then the world pandemic began and everything stopped while nations around the world began issuing isolation orders. Lauren was just beginning a tour with 70+ shows when she was grounded and left with no outlet for her art but Zoom concerts. She said it reminded her of the two years she spent in isolation during her high school years, when she was dealing with an illness.
“I remember feeling the isolation in 2020 and thinking that ‘this is one of the best gifts God could give me right now, because it made me have to be still and reconcile with the fact that my life was spinning absolutely out of control.”
She said that this time allowed her to “find the beauty of life again in the simple things.” It gave her the chance to spend more time with her family and loved ones. While she said it was not good for a human being to be going as fast as she was, she also said it was like whiplash to suddenly have to stop. This was exacerbated by not being able to connect with her fans at any live show.
“I started dealing with a lot of depression, a lot of anxiety, and panic attacks … I feel like a lot of people experienced similar [circumstances] … from the sense that life was one way and now [they’re] being told a completely different construct.”
Daigle peered through the panic and anxiety to God and asked him to return the joy of her salvation and to return her to an exuberance for life. She said that it’s a matter of perspective; to walk through life and willfully “see the glory of God’s kingdom, rather than the things of the natural.”
Loneliness is a topic close to Daigle’s heart. She recalled how she was once asked what she would like to be remembered for, to which she said:
“It wasn’t ‘Oh, I want 900 Grammys.’ That sounds great, not against it, but the thing I said is ‘I want to be someone who is known as helping eradicate loneliness … it’s the worst of all feelings. I do not like feeling lonely.”
Daigle said since she was a child she has felt drawn to accompany those who are experiencing loneliness. She expressed that she feels this is a calling to all Christians as far back as the Great Commandments, which instruct us to love our neighbors. This can be as simple as greeting someone on the sidewalk, or interacting pleasantly with others in all our meetings.
“How can we as Christians solve this problem of loneliness? I would say it’s to be present and to see others in their situation. Not in the situation you want them to be in, but their actual situation … I find myself really seeing Jesus the most clear in those moments and the light in those moments. Actually, you’ll find that you thought you’d help them, but your heart will light up in a way you haven’t felt in years.”
She went on to explain how the stories she hears from fans fill her with hope and the humility she feels when her songs can help someone else. She related one account of a fan who had undergone an abortion over a decade ago. While the woman had believed it was the right choice, it had caused more harm in her life and left her depressed and unable to leave her bed. When she heard “How Can It Be” for the first time, she told Lauren that she finally found the strength to face the day.
In another fan story she explained how folks who were coming to her shows would connect with others on message boards. Two ladies who were going to attend one of her concerts alone connected online and decided to go to the show together. They became such close friends through mutual interest in Daigle’s music that they actually moved to a new town together so that they would have a friend close by.
There are plenty more lovely sentiments brimming with themes of hope and friendship in Daigle’s interview. Watch the whole thing in the video featured above.