Dylan Conrique Opens Up on the Heartfelt "i miss you (skin to skin)" [Q&A]
Grab a box of tissues and get ready to shed a tear or two, because multi-talented artist Dylan Conrique's "i miss you (skin to skin)" is the most heartbreaking song of the summer Whether you know her from her role in ABC’s The Rookie or from her standout hit "Birthday Cake" which has surpassed over 100 million streams across platforms, you won’t forget Conrique’s name after hearing this newest single written in collaboration with music legends Max Martin, Johan Carlsson, and Mozella. The stunning track showcases the rising star's impressive vocals and unique pop versatility in a new way, leaving fans and followers clamoring for a full version weeks before its official release.
Next month, Conrique embarks on her first solo tour, making stops in Los Angeles, New York, and London—the latter of which she had to add an extra show after selling out the first one on release day. We got the chance to chat with this star in the making and hear more about her newest song, upcoming tour, and journey with writing music.
Ones to Watch: What are you most excited about with the release of "i miss you (skin to skin)?"
Dylan Conrique: This song, so many people relate to it and it’s such a common feeling. When I first posted a snippet of it, everyone was like "oh my gosh this has to be released, this has to be released, I’m gonna cry to this song." I feel like it will resonate with people really well, and I just really hope they like it.
How are you navigating who you want to be as an artist while growing up and still discovering yourself as a person?
Growing up, when I first started writing music, I had never really been in a real relationship, or a relationship in general, and I was kind of singing about things that I thought were right. As you grow up, you go through things. I would say mental health is a really big thing in our generation and it’s a very serious thing. When you grow up, I’m 18 now, I think you experience more things… and it all kind of molds you into the person that you are and will become.
This song, along with other releases such as "Birthday Cake" are so honest and vulnerable. How did you get comfortable enough to be so open in your songs?
When you write music, I feel like you just have to be completely honest, and that’s really how you connect with a song. You know, when I went into the studio and wrote "i miss you" that day, I was kind of going through it. All I felt was that I missed that person and wanted to be back with that person. I don’t think anyone should ever be embarrassed about how they feel and should just tell everyone how they feel. This is just how I do it, in music.
When did you realize you could use music as this voice to express yourself?
I had no clue that I could write a song in general. I used to do karaoke and never wrote a song when I was little… but about four years ago, I signed with my label and they put me in a writing session and I’d never done that before; I was super nervous. I came out with "Baby Blue" and it was one of the first songs I ever put out and went from there. I think that the more you practice the better you get, so that’s what I’ve been doing, just writing how I feel.
You mentioned you were missing someone specific when writing "i miss you." Are you often writing about specific people, and if you are, is that something you like to share with them or do you wait to let them absorb the song with the rest of the world?
I kind of just let everyone absorb it… When I went into the studio I [told] the writers and producers how I felt, but I kind of let the song speak for itself.
What was it like working with Max Martin, Johan Carlsson, and Mozella for this new track?
[That was] my first writing session back in about eight months. I took a good break from writing for a little bit, because when you write songs, you have to live life to be able to write about it. I had this session with Johan and immediately just clicked with him, it just worked. I wrote this song with Mozella also… we finished a demo, and then that day Max walked in and was like "This is a great song, can I give you a little pointer," and I was like "of course." I was literally speechless… from there, he’s honestly been a teacher for me just by observing him and being in the same room.
With such an active career that spans music, writing, acting, and performing, how do you balance it all?
I love hanging out with my friends and try to hang out with them as much as possible. I usually have the weekends off which is really nice and I can just do whatever I need for myself. When I’m acting, it’s full attention to that in that moment, and after, I can go back to singing. Being on The Rookie has been amazing because I’m learning from the actors on the show which is really cool, but I’m also just having fun while acting, I love being able to play a different character. It’s easy to snap into it.
What do you think about social media today? Is it something you love, something you hate?
I would say it’s a love-hate relationship—not with the people on it, of course not but just the idea. It makes me think that I have to look perfect all the time, I can’t show my bad days… that’s why I made a spam account on TikTok to be able to release a little. I do think that social media has a very, very big impact on the world in general and it’s a good source to gain attention.
I know you have a tour coming up next month. How are you feeling about that?
Oh, I’m so nervous. I’ve never had my own show. I’ve performed in other things, but I’ve never had my own show where people are going there to see me which is just crazy to think. I don’t know, I’m super, super nervous about it, but I’m also super excited because I get to sing my songs with the people in the crowd and it’s gonna be a really cool environment. Overall, I’m excited to travel again and see people's faces.
What stop on the tour are you most excited for?
I’m excited for it all. At the LA show, I’ll have friends and family there. I grew up in Northern California so to be able to be like "Yeah, I had a little concert in LA." It’s awesome. In New York, I know a couple fans just through the internet, and I’m super excited to see them because they bought tickets. And then the London show, we added another one, so we have two shows there which is overall just super exciting.
What’s an unexpected travel essential you’re bringing along for tour?
I can’t sleep on planes, I can’t even use a neck pillow and go to sleep. So I bought this, like, inflatable pillow, so I’m gonna try that out and that’s probably going to be an essential because I do not do well with time changes.