Elizabeth Gomez a.k.a. Elizabeth le Fay a.k.a. Globelamp has found a little House On The Prairie-esque paper doll gown (complete with a puffy sleeping cat cradled in the arms of the doll) in an antique doll book we discovered at my parents’ house near the beautifully gray and choppy-waved Ashokan Reservoir. She tells me this is the most Taylor Swift-suitable outfit in the book for a doll she wants to make. In the course of a nice day discussing travel, spirituality and social issues, such as how attending a Woody Allen film is problematic and unfair to Dylan Farrow, we’ve covered a lot of ground. Throw in an anecdote about how she almost tried out for Interview With the Vampire when she was little and it has been an interesting eight December hours.
Globelamp is in the Woodstock-Kingston area to record the follow up to 2016’s The Orange Glow, released on Wichita Records, at Bohemesphere Studios in Saugerties. She meanwhile also keeps in regular contact with her friends in the Swiftie online community in order to participate as they uplift one another around the world through friendly support.
Her newly in production/recorded material contains songs old and new. All of them have a unifying and magical sense of depth and story to them. Her struggles as an at-times-silenced woman who spoke out about abuse she dealt with while a member of the band Foxygen prefaced the #MeToo wave, but haven’t really given a fair shake, despite her willingness to talk about them. She maintains she was framed in court by Foxygen singer Sam France’s family over charges she tried to break into a house and she brings up that she had no lawyer. She maintains he punched her in the face and has photo evidence. People judged her because of a court ruling against her that placed a restraining order between her and Sam France and camp, but what if she had been telling the truth this whole time?
As Impose Magazine wrote in a January 28, 2016 feature,”…by January 24, 2014 France’s family, the band, and its representatives had their way. Le Fey was out of the picture, deleted from band history, and silenced by fear of court orders.” Knowing my own sister Cambria was kind of erased from local musical scene history by a popular act, I related to aspects of Elizabeth’s story all too well.
Some of the stories in Elizabeth’s current batch of songs are painful and others are bright, playful and even humorous. She really is an incredible songwriter who blends many genres through her own unique self’s perspectives. I wonder if she is enjoying the East Coast light winter vibes. We are both Aries.
In person, Gomez is charming, extremely funny and certainly not an antagonistic, mean spirited person. She often ponders double standards she notices in life in current events while also keeping an open mind to entrenched opinions. It’s really cool to see in a time when many others are being more cautious about being vocal or stubbornly cling to outmoded beliefs.
Elizabeth is helping many Taylor Swift fans to feel like they have more backbone when it comes to defending their love of the multi-faceted pop star. There is an undeniable bond between all the Taylor fans around the globe on the not-yet-available-in-America new app called The Swift Life, especially the rowdy and passionate fans from Brazil.
Elizabeth recently asked Taylor fans on Twitter who weren’t white women and girls to show their diversity and received a huge, ecstatic and vocally supportive response from many countries. It was pretty cool.
How does it feel to record the music this time? “It feels exciting,” she says. “Good in a natural and refreshing way. It’s exciting to have them in tangible form because they’ve been in my head a long time.”
Jay Andersen of space-grunge band Surmiser is engineering the sessions. Elizabeth has managed to capture a large chunk of the insistent live essence to some of her songs during her time in Bohemesphere Studios, a kinetic energy that makes one of her live performances really electrify transmuted into recorded session takes and well-layered tracks. The approach focuses on powerfully emotive and at times theatrical vocals paired with minimalism as an aesthetic but leaves lots of room for adding other elements as needed. James Felice of The Felice Brothers is likely going to cameo on a song. They both collaborated on a song with Andersen and me for my own musical project Walking Bombs, a space-country-inspired ballad with accordion called “Even When It Hurts” that was about love, loss and suicide.
I ask Elizabeth if the process of recording ever makes her relive the experiences of where and when she wrote the songs or if she gets fresh eyes. “Fresh eyes,” she replies. “The songs are innocuous. Some of them I relive, I guess. ‘Refugee’ is about a family I know, but anything else is kind of open to interpretation.”
She tells me she likes the Catskills better than New York City’s rat race. “It’s very picturesque and cute,” she says. “I’d never been here before and picked a good time to come in December right before it snowed. I’m from California. We never have snow. Where I am from there are fires there right now. I’d never been to Upstate New York. I like it here. It reminds me of the Taylor Swift album Red.”
How does she keep in touch with any inspiration and spirituality inside in these chaotic times? “I just focus on my vision and what I believe is true. Trends and politics change. I don’t want to be swayed,” She says. “Be the change you want to see in the world is something I try to do every day. I am a vegetarian and prefer non violence. I don’t believe in contributing to killing the animals in the ongoing slaughter of factory farms. That’s important to me. I read Paramahansa Yogananda’s Autobiography of a Yogi. It was a sacrifice. People always take it as me having an affront on their diet but it’s my way of not ritualistically contributing to violence everyday when I eat and with what I put into my body. I try to take bad things that happened to me and put it into my art. Have a machine that will take the pain but make art back in your face.”