Liddy Clark is one busy young lady. The 20-year-old singer/songwriter has just released her new single, “Hit & Run,” is preparing to come out with a new EP and spends a great deal of her time writing with some of the top songwriters on Nashville’s Music Row. On top of that, she’ll be returning to the University of Southern California in the fall, resuming her studies at the Thornton School of Music. Clark took some time from her never-dull schedule to speak with “S&E Nashville” about her current projects and plans for the future.
She reveals that “Hit & Run” will be part of an upcoming EP project, though a release date has yet to be slated. “I just put that [single] out in early July,” Clark begins. “There might be four songs coming out of that project before we release it. I’m trying to get as much material out there as I can to give people a better idea of the direction I’m going. That is kind of our strategy.”
Don’t let the “Hit & Run” title mislead you, though. The song actually deals with the regret and hurt feelings after someone has blindsided you with betrayal. “I think there are people out there who can share that feeling,” Clark says. “I wrote that about being betrayed by somebody close to you. It’s getting some good feedback, so, hopefully, listeners are relating to it.”
While relatively young, Clark has the background and experience of a seasoned performer. She took up the guitar at age 12 and her journey toward a music career began. “I started in musical theater,” Clark begins. “Performing and songwriting kind of came all at once.” She showed enough promise as a teen to open for established artists like Scotty McCreery and Jake Owen. At age 14, she was tapped to perform at Loretta Lynn’s Ranch in Hurricane Mills, Tennessee. Clark was also fronting her own band at 16 years old.
Currently, Clark resides in Nashville and collaborates with other songwriters as often as possible. Unlike many of her peers, Clark is comfortable with the co-writing process and relishes working with the Music Row pros. “I started writing my own songs when I was about 13,” she says. “But co-writing is something I want to do. A lot of times, I’ll go back and write by myself, but I really enjoy collaborating with other writers and artists. As a songwriter,” Clark adds, “everything I write is personal.”
That was clearly evident on easily her most powerful tune, last year’s “Shot Down (Stand Up),” a work that literally hit close to home for her. Clark was born in Plano Texas, but raised in Parkland, Florida. If the latter city sounds familiar, you’ll recognize it as the site of the tragic school shooting at Stoneman Douglas High School in 2018. At the time, Clark’s song provided a measure of healing for the community. As Clark noted in her online bio, “For me, the most important thing I wanted to get across is that we really can move forward with the best solution for everyone, if people could just listen to each other and make an effort to understand.” Even now, on some occasions, a fan will approach Clark and mention “Shot Down” as a source of comfort.
“It’s not something that people talk a lot about anymore,” she says. “Too much time has passed. But when they do talk about it, they are always very approving of the message. They’re very supportive of where I went with that.”
As far as future goals, Clark boils everything down to one key element – keep improving. “Every year you want to progress a little more,” she says. “Compared to what I was writing a year ago, I think my songs have become much better. And I’m always working on my live shows. I have a couple things coming up in Nashville and I’ll still perform a few dates in California in between my studies.”
But before she heads back to USC, she’ll make sure to squeeze in a few more visits to her favorite Music City spots. “I go to Chuy’s a lot,” Clark says with a slight chuckle. “I know that’s not really a local Nashville place, but the food is always really good. Three Brothers Coffee is also one of my favorite places. And of course, Centennial Park is always super pretty.” Liddy Clark’s current single “Hit & Run” is available now. To keep up with Liddy, please visit her website and follow her on social media.