Welcome to The Drop, Refinery29's home for music video premieres. We want to shine the spotlight on women artists whose music inspires, excites, and (literally) moves us. This is where we'll champion their voices.
Destiny is a hard thing to fight — when something is meant to be, it'll be, no matter what other plans you have for yourself. At least, that's how things have played out for Shari Silver, rockstar-in-the-making.
Since she was a kid, the 24-year-old singer-songwriter has had a burning passion for music; raised on rock, the musical stylings of artists like The Beatles and Jimi Hendrix were the soundtrack to her life. Despite being surrounded by music from her earliest years, Silver wasn't always on her way to becoming the next Stevie Nicks. Had her parents had their way, the musician we see today might have been a world famous soccer player instead, perhaps bringing home the gold as a starting member of a national team like her older sister Lauren. The universe had other plans for her.
The guitar that Silver received on her ninth birthday changed her life's trajectory for good. By the time she was 13, the South Florida native had officially abandoned all interest in sports (to the devastation of her parents and the local sports community) and began nurturing her artistic side, teaching herself to play both the guitar and the piano from the privacy of her bedroom.
"At some point, I was doing soccer and music at the same time and actually succeeding more with sports," Silver recalled of her childhood to Refinery29 during a Zoom video call. "I think my parents thought that I was just taking a break before going back to the soccer field, but that never happened."
"I spent so much time just focusing on my music, playing music every hour of every day until I got better," she continued. "All I did was play music all day because that was all I cared about."
More than a decade later, that zeal for music hasn't faded — if anything, it's only gotten stronger. And after years of quietly working on her craft, Silver is now ready to officially introduce herself to the world as an artist.
Her new single "Last Time" will be many people's first time coming across her work, and it will be quite the introduction. Taking cues from the rock greats that fuelled her youth, "Last Time" sees Silver alternating between soothingly mellow vocals and a staggering rasp as she muses over a laundry list of bad habits that are damn near impossible to break. In the music video for the song, premiering right here on Refinery29, Silver finds herself stuck in a seemingly endless loop of regret.
"I try to do everything right, but you know how it goes," she sings with conviction as she moves in an almost zombified daze through a Groundhog Day-esque scenario. "I can't change all of my habits in a day or so — I can't sit here and deny what I already know."
The lyrics of the grunge rock tune may be depressingly relatable — how many of us have said that the last time would be the last time? — but Silver's taking the cycle of toxic behaviour in stride. After all, she's only human.
"The song comes from my personal life and some of the things that I don't exactly love about myself that I really wanted to get out," she explained. "It's just about the mentality of someone who struggles to break their bad habits day after day, which is a very human thing that we all tend to forget about. 'Last Time' sounds negative, but there's also a sense of acceptance that I have about it. Like, okay, I did say that I wouldn't do that again, but what am I gonna do? I still have to keep moving forward."
Vulnerability is never easy, yet it's something that Silver easily taps into for "Last Love" and the rest of the songs on her upcoming debut EP. The project is admittedly "dark," building upon many of the emotional struggles that the singer-songwriter has faced throughout her life, so it's only fitting that rock is the genre she'll use as therapy to work out those issues. As a music connoisseur who loves Rihanna and Lights just as much as she loves Janis Joplin, the end goal isn't to stay in to stay in that place and in that sound — Silver plans to transform project by project. But first...angst.
"A lot of the songs [on the EP] come from a place of anger and confusion, but that's just me writing from the perspective of my inner child," said Silver. "A lot of times, our inner child gets hurt and damaged by life but doesn't know how to process anything. For me, this project is an attempt to try and address those hurts and give my inner child a voice so that I can move forward with my life because I haven't been able to."
"I'm so relieved that this project is finally happening because then I'll able to be done and move on to way different music!" she laughed. "This project is so rock-oriented because that's my foundation, who I've been since I was a kid, but I definitely don't want to do dark music forever. I want to explore a whole bunch of different songs and sounds. I want to be Rihanna — to be so lit that people will love whatever I do no matter what."
This interview was edited and condensed for clarity.