Savanna Leigh discusses the evolution of her music and her latest EP, Reminders of You

Savanna Leigh is gearing up for an exciting future with her fourth EP, Reminders of You, set to release on August 20th.


Savanna Leigh is gearing up for an exciting future with her newest EP, Reminders of You, set to release on August 20th. With recent singles, ‘Mason Street’ and ‘Happier Songs,’ fans are already immersed in her new sound and captivating stories. Alongside the EP, she is preparing exclusive behind-the-scenes content for a later reveal. In her interview with United By Pop, Savanna delves into her musical evolution as storyteller and songwriter, favorite creative environments, and passion for psychology.

Congratulations on the success of ‘Mason Street’ and ‘Happier Songs’! Could you discuss how your storytelling skills developed over the last three EPs? You transitioned from focusing on a single breakup story to weaving multiple narratives in your new singles.

Over the past three years, I have spent countless hours writing, both by myself and in sessions with other writers. For a long time, the breakup I was going through was a prolonged, back-and-forth relationship that lasted from most of my younger life into early adulthood. It was something I could easily draw inspiration from. Writing about myself and other aspects of my life was a bit harder because it felt more natural to focus on familiar topics. Overall, I would say time and the natural progression of events that gave me more material to write about and share with people.

In your Instagram and TikTok lives, you mention that your new songs have multiple meanings. Could you explain why this is and give a teaser for your fans? Do these multiple meanings involve different stories, irony, easter eggs, or something else?

I was hanging out with my writer/producer friend, Andrew Pacheco, who was heavily involved in this project with me. Last year, we were going back and forth on what the EP should be called. I get nervous about titling projects because I always overthink and want the title to perfectly capture the moment.

We were discussing the songs, and I remember him saying that Reminders of You is such a cool title. I agreed but worried that it would make people assume the whole EP is about an ex, which it isn’t. He suggested, “That’s why it would be cool to italicize the word ‘You’ so that the font on You stands out a bit.”

I sometimes overthink things, and he reminded me, “The word You can mean so many things.” That’s where the multiple meanings come in. Reminders of You could refer to an ex, a younger version of yourself, a physical thing like the house in ‘Mason Street,’ or the version of me in ‘Happier Songs’ who was in a relationship. Overall, I feel like the EP title is a big umbrella that captures all the stories told in the project and narrows them down to one title. That was most important to me.

Speaking of multiple meanings, your instrumentals are quite distinct from your lyrics. Could you discuss the contrasts between ‘Happier Songs,’ ‘Mason Street,’ and your other tracks? You recently teased the tracklist on

I definitely wanted this project to evolve more than it had in the past few years, both sonically and in terms of what I wanted the project to sound like. Being from Florida, I think having some kind of coastal energy in the music really matters to me. I almost wanted it to feel like driving by the beach in Florida when I am listening to it. And I think there are so many different instruments that contribute to that sound, so that is something that is significant for me on this project.

As a songwriter, I also lean towards more intimate, vulnerable lyrics that tell a story but have a personal aspect to them. Every song I have released so far has been something I have truly gone through and an emotion I have felt. It has never been about anyone else outside of me. These songs are reflective in that way, and I wanted the music to complement them, but I also wanted to show people that sometimes you can have upbeat/mid-tempo production mixed with meaningful, sad, and melancholy lyrics, which provides contrast for listeners.

It also depends on each song. For ‘Mason Street’, of course, it’s such a personal song. I wrote it mostly about myself on guitar, and I wanted it to be showcased in the final production of the song. We tried to add more to it to see if it felt right, but every time we tried to add more production to it, it felt like it was not right. So, for that song, it makes sense to go stripped back. Then, for the newest single, ‘Happier Songs’, I wanted it to feel happy when you are listening to it, but I also wanted to convey the story of being afraid to let yourself be happy, which is what the lyrics are currently saying. Having that contrast is cool when I am listening as a fan to artists that I love.

I’m curious about your EP and single covers. Each one features a photograph of you instead of artwork. Why is that?

For this EP specifically, I wanted there to be a cohesive theme. I worked with a team based out of Nashville called Working Holiday, and I had them fly to Florida, where I am from, so that we could shoot everything within a few days. This allowed everything to have a Florida-esque type of imagery. Additionally, we used a photographer based in Nashville named Nathan Chapman, who had done a lot of the early Taylor Swift production photos. We loved that kind of blurry, forward-facing style. This project is so personal; it captures many different aspects of my life. I felt that I should be somewhere on the cover, but in a way that felt artistic and not like a school photo. Instead, I wanted it to have a vibe that matches ‘Mason Street’.

The photo used for the cover is from the day we shot ‘Mason Street’ and has a moody, darker vibe to it. In contrast, ‘Happier Songs’ was shot in the middle of a field in Nashville. I was with my team that day, having fun. I felt that the visual on the outside appeared happy, but the coloring of me in the black dress created a contrast, reflecting the lyrics of the song.

I’m not particularly artsy in the sense that I cannot draw or paint, but I have an eye for ensuring that things make sense, with the photos and visuals matching the songs. I hope that this comes across as the singles continue to roll out.

What are a few of your favorite places in Florida or Nashville where you write your songs?

Here in Nashville, I mostly write in my apartment, which is in my room. I have a framed picture of the beach in Florida behind me in all my live videos, and this is the place where I feel most comfortable writing solo. It’s quiet; I can recenter and think about what I want to say. Having that picture gives me creative inspiration. I feel like Florida is the place where I draw so much from, with the ocean in front of me. I usually put on a YouTube video of ocean waves on my TV while I am writing; it can be stock footage or anything that can get me in a creative headspace. I also have sessions with people in Nashville, in a producer session, wherever that may be. It’s all typically within a 30-minute radius from here, so not too bad.

In Florida, I write similarly, in my bedroom upstairs at my mom’s house in Apollo Beach. I like to write outside a lot too; I go out to the back porch and sit by the bay. Those are the main places, and I also draw a lot of inspiration from my notes app as I go through the day. If I am on a plane ride or driving and get inspired by something, I will write down lyrics or add a voice memo.

A woman in a white shirt poses in front of a white wall.
Nathan Chapman

Where do you draw your inspiration from now that you have transitioned from the country genre to singing covers and ultimately becoming a singer-songwriter?

When I first released music, I delved deeply into the pop genre, as far as I believed I could. This stemmed from my initial years immersed in the country-pop world upon arriving in Nashville. I wasn’t sure if it ever felt truly authentic to me. While I love country music, I didn’t feel it was the right fit for my own projects. I recall feeling the need to veer completely away from what I had previously done.

As the years have passed, I’ve come to realize that many aspects of the country genre feel authentic and genuine to me because of my upbringing listening to it. Not necessarily in terms of making my music sound country production-wise, but I’ve always been drawn to the storytelling aspect and the writing, which has been a constant throughout my life. I aim to blend the worlds of pop and country, leading me into the indie space I’ve occupied over the last two years. Now, I feel each project leans more into that sound, allowing me to explore all the elements I love about the different genres I grew up listening to. Being in this new space feels like me.

I draw inspiration from various sources, including situations in my life, my family, childhood memories, past friendships, and my single status for a while. At 24 years old, most of my friends are getting married, which feels surreal. However, I’ve never been in that mindset. I’ve always been focused on my work, and I’ve remained single, which is amusing to most people because everyone else seems to be dating while I’m not.

It is a constant struggle though. For a couple of years I would just work and stay in Nashville then occasionally do things I actually wanted to do. I have been trying to incorporate living in the last few years that way I have something to write about and am inspired by. It has been like a balance as of now.

You are also passionate about psychology and are a certified Enneagram coach. What insights have you gained from these fields while writing this EP?

I’ve been interested in psychology for the past four years. I recall my sophomore year of music when I first encountered it. There was a class where we had to take the enneagram test and learn about our personality for that specific creative class. Since then, I’ve been drawn to the whole world of enneagrams, and attachment styles came into the picture later when I discovered there was a significant correlation between the two.

The enneagram focuses on understanding the “why” behind people’s behaviors, which sets it apart from other tests I’ve taken in the past. It provides a deep understanding of oneself, what motivates one’s actions, and why one might behave differently from others. It fosters self-compassion and compassion for others in one’s life, as you learn about their type and what they fear.

Through the process of songwriting, I’ve been able to utilize this self-awareness. While I knew these aspects of myself prior to learning about enneagrams and attachments, I struggled to articulate them. Delving into myself and understanding the makeup of my personality has helped me reflect in songwriting. It’s crucial to know oneself and engage in deep conversations with oneself or others. Psychology has been helpful in those ways

Returning to the topic of ‘Reminders You,’ what is your thought process behind the gifts, letters, and projects you create with your fans?

When it comes to the things I do with my fans, I am aware of how special it is to have people supporting me, the music I release, and showing interest in everything I do. It’s easy for people to overlook the numbers on social media and not connect with the human behind the phone screen. My team, especially my manager, has always been passionate about ensuring that every single person who supports me knows that I care and that they can get to know me on a deeper, more personal level than what is portrayed on social media. I’m incredibly aware of my fans’ support, and I know it’s the reason I can continue to release music, projects, and more ideas for them. I don’t want people to feel like they’re unseen.

With the music being so personal, I want to ensure that I’m not only sharing my story but also finding ways for people to connect with the story I’m telling and apply it to their own lives. All of this inspires me and is also important to me as both a person and an artist. It’s something I’ve always wanted to do, even if I was at a level where I was consistently performing at bigger venues. I’ve always told my team that I want to do acoustic house-style shows where it’s personal, regardless of the venue or level of success I attain.I always want to engage in fan projects and give back to everyone supporting me. We wanted to find a way to give back to people in a manner that not every artist is doing.

The gifts I give are inspired by my personal interests, such as handwriting, letters, and gift-giving, beyond just my music. We were trying to find a way to incorporate letters and words of affirmation, which are my love language, and make them feel like a part of this project even if we’re not all in the same state.

Where do you get your merch ideas from?

My manager, her assistant, and I talk every day non-stop. Every week, we have a group call, and it’s a close-knit team. The two of them are insanely creative and thoughtful, truly human-to-human kinds of people. They are artistic and love the idea of making people feel something through whatever we are working on, always making it intentional. We get on calls to discuss lyrics we love, lyrics fans are gravitating towards, comments on social media, and then we brainstorm ideas from there.

The Emotionally Invested Club came from my merch designer last year, Dom. He said, “Oh, this would be cool! Let’s create a poster for it.” It’s always collaborative, and we see what develops from there. We want people to connect the merch to something meaningful. The ‘Mason Street’ postcards featured an Easter egg of a lantern from that song. The beach postcard was from that video too. It’s all interconnected, which is important for both my team and fans.

You recently posted about your EP show at The Mercury Lounge in New York, where you’ll be opening for WhereisGavn. Can you share any hints about upcoming projects beyond the EP show?

Before the EP fully drops in August, I have some cool things coming up for June in L.A. It correlates with another project that I am doing because it’s important to me to bring collaborators onto the project and explain why we created it the way we did, whether that’s the production, the songwriting, or the music videos. I am one of those fans of musicians who loves going on YouTube and watching them talk about the process behind their projects. I love learning about the why behind the music, and it matters to me as an artist. I wanted to give that back to them too.

In the next few weeks, we are going to be working on the project here in Nashville and traveling to L.A. to give people a deeper insight into the music. Those things will be rolling out right after the project. It’s a different way for fans to hear a more in-depth explanation of how the project came to be.

You can find Savanna here.

Listen to ‘Happier Songs’ here.

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