The 20 Best Jenny Lewis Quotes

Jenny Lewis has lived many lives. Growing up, she was an actor taking on many roles, including co-starring in the video game-themed movie The Wizard. Lewis is also a fashion icon and, in some ways, the voice of a certain generation.

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But more succinctly, today, Lewis is a popular musician. She recently released her latest solo LP, Joy’All, and she rose to fame with her terrific indie rock group, Rilo Kiley. She’s seen and done it all in the world of entertainment.

With all that to her credit, one might wonder what Lewis has to say about her crafts, the world around her, life, and love—well, that is the subject of today’s inquiry, dear reader.

So, without further ado, here are the 20 best Jenny Lewis quotes.

1. “I’ve always tried to get around writing love songs, I guess because I’ve always had a hard time saying, ‘I love you.'”

2. “It would be nice to create something that’s healing rather than slightly creepy and darkly judgmental!”

3. “In your mid-30s, you have to take inventory, or you’ll stumble.”

4. “I like babies, but not in the front row. I don’t want to sing directly to a baby.”

5. “I demo all of my songs on Garage Band, where I pretty much play everything—not very well, but I manage to hammer out a drum beat and a bass idea.”

6. “My parents divorced when I was 3 years old. They had a lounge act in Las Vegas, where I was born. The band broke up and the marriage dissolved, and my mother, my sister and I moved to Southern California. And I didn’t see my dad a lot growing up; he was on the road a lot. I’d see him every couple of years.”

7. “When I was a teenager, I went to Europe on a backpacking trip by myself, and I met a woman who was following Sebadoh. It was the early 1990s, and that was my introduction to indie rock.”

8. “When you’re talking about your own music every day, listening to bands, going to festivals, you can kind of lose sight of your initial connection with music. Instrumental music—especially jazz—helps me refocus.”

9. “I think I have a hard time expressing myself in my relationships. I use songs to tell people how I’m feeling. If I can’t say ‘I love you,’ I’ll write a song about it and hope that the person figures it out.”

10. “I felt like on stage I have to have a certain amount of anonymity, like, personal anonymity, to feel loose and free. When you’re up there with people who’ve known you for a decade, and you make a bad joke and you hear the cackling behind the drums, it’s hard to get lost in the moment.”

11. “When I’m sick of myself, and when I don’t know what to say as a solo artist, I can write a song for a movie. When I don’t know where to turn musically, being in a band—Rilo Kiley or Jenny & Johnny—the collaborative nature is really exciting.”

12. “Being in a band is a really magical thing because you’ve got a family and you operate as this one entity. It’s very democratic; everyone is involved in the output. But within that, there can be a lot of disagreements and strife.”

13. “After Rilo Kiley broke up and a few really intense personal things happened, I completely melted down. It nearly destroyed me. I had such severe insomnia that, at one point, I didn’t sleep for five straight nights.”

14. “There’s always a bit of fiction in everything that I write.”

15. “Sometimes you don’t understand what you’re going through until you’re on the other side of it.”

16. “I didn’t know anything about music when I started a band. I barely knew how to play a guitar. I didn’t know how to produce records. I learned how to play bass guitar and keyboards in Rilo Kiley. I picked up a lot from my collaborators.”

17. “I’ve always just had sort of a dark take on life, I suppose, and hopefully, the music transcends that in a way.”

18. “I write music, really, to make myself feel better.”

19. “It’s funny how a song can start in your mind, and then when it goes through all the filters, it ends up in a totally different spot.”

20. “When I sit down to write a song, there is no filter. I’m not trying to write for anyone or anything specifically. It’s just trying to capture a little piece of your soul—even if it’s a really ugly part.”

Calling all music enthusiasts! Purchase your tickets now for Jenny Lewis’ 2024 tour and witness her charismatic and dynamic live performances.

Photo by Astrida Valigorsky/Getty Images

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