The secret life of an SGAG writer: Annette Lee

By day she writes scripts and directs videos, by night she writes songs and makes music

(Photo: Annette Lee/Facebook)

Calling it her “passion project,” Annette (she goes by ANNETTE for her music work), who has never received any formal training in music, shared that she has been burning the midnight oil to work on this EP.  She also wrote all five songs herself by herself and received some help from the producers with the bridge for her fifth song when she was in Nashville.

Annette, who first got acquainted with music through piano classes when she was younger, shared that she started songwriting after teaching herself to play the guitar at the age of 12. “Eventually I learned how to write [songs] and wrote my own stuff too. I never actually paid for a singing class – the only thing I was more properly trained in was art and film-making.”

Even with a grant from the National Arts Council, Annette had to dip into her savings to fund this EP -- an endeavor made possible by her full-time job at SGAG.

“I got a day job so that I can spend on this,” she laughed. “In that sense, this is not the money-making thing that’s supposed to feed me right now too. [But] if it makes it any better, I really enjoy my job too.”

For the past year, things got “quite crazy” when she had to juggle between work and her music project (“some weeks I just have no life,” she says), but everything worked out with the support of her bosses, who are generally “very supportive” of everybody’s hobbies and stuff they do outside of work – “as long as you don’t compromise on work,” she said.

Annette Lee's illustrations
Some of Annette's illustrations (Photos: Annette/Instagram)

For someone whose creative work is viewed by hundreds of thousands of people on a daily basis, has it ever occurred to Annette that her online personas may one day overshadow her other creative projects – be it singing, drawing or film-making? “I always feel that with a persona, you can always push [yourself to do] something a bit crazier. [For example, for my illustrations] I’d draw myself doing something I won’t be able to show in real life.”

“In the same way, I can do whatever crazy stuff I wanna do [on videos] too… It’s fun, I’m ok with this persona thing. In fact, if I could sing under a persona, I would too,” she added.

We’ll keep an ear out for that when it happens.

ANNETTE’s first EP All Our Achilles Heels is now available on Spotify. Follow her on Instagram or Facebook.

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