Lorde has gotten into the habit of disappearing. The New Zealand native has returned to the spotlight with new music every four years since 2013, with long periods of silence in between. After the release of her third album, Solar Power, on Aug. 20, Lorde will likely go back to her quiet life once again.
During her hiatuses, Lorde stays away from social media and the internet as much as possible. This might frustrate her fans, but she revealed in a new interview that she has good reason for avoiding the platforms. Here’s why Lorde cut herself off from social media and how she spends her time away from screens.
Lorde returned to the spotlight for her ‘Solar Power’ album release
The pop singer surprised fans on June 10 when she dropped “Solar Power,” the lead single off her third album of the same name. Lorde’s song release followed a similar pattern to her previous album drops, where she worked behind the scenes for four years until suddenly popping back into the limelight for promotional work. After she released her sophomore album in 2017, Melodrama, Lorde spent about a year touring, doing interviews, and promoting the record before retreating to New Zealand.
For many artists, time away from the spotlight might be considered a break from the music industry. However, for Lorde, it’s the other way around. She told The New York Times in August that music is “a break from my life.”
“I went back to living my life…It’s hard for people to understand that,” she said. “I come back and perform these duties because I believe in the album.”
Lorde has no access to her social media accounts or the internet on her phone
Lorde’s Twitter account currently contains zero tweets. Meanwhile, her Instagram feed consists of only three posts. These accounts used to be filled, but in 2018, the singer suddenly wiped them clean, leaving many fans confused. Several theories for her absence floated around, including one false rumor that she went to jail, as InStyle reported.
Some fans thought Lorde decided to abandon her album and leave fame behind entirely. However, she assured everyone that she still planned to work on Solar Power. On June 22, she made a brief return to Instagram to post three Solar Power promotional images.
As it turns out, Lorde’s decision to leave social media came down to internet addiction, according to The New York Times. She told the publication her phone no longer has an internet browser, she can’t access YouTube on her laptop, and her friends keep her social media passwords on lockdown.
“I would see my screen time go to like, 11 hours, and I knew it was just looking at the Daily Mail,” she explained. “I remember sitting up in bed and realizing I could get to the end of my life and have done this every day. And it’s up to me to choose, right now. So I just sort of chose.”
When she’s not Lorde, she’s Ella Yelich-O’Connor
When Lorde is away from the spotlight, she isn’t Lorde at all; she’s Ella Yelich-O’Connor. In fact, the singer’s friend, Francesca Hopkins, told The New York Times that the “Lorde thing doesn’t and hasn’t really come up.”
“I’ve probably said the word ‘Lorde’ maybe like — I can count it on one hand,” Hopkins added.
As Ella, she enjoys cooking, gardening, and spending time with her friends and her dog. Lorde told The New York Times that it all comes down to leading a normal life, just like others do.
“I’m aware of the way people look at me,” she said. “I can feel the huge amount of love and devotion that people have for me — and for people in my position — and straightaway, I wanted to be like, ‘I’m not the one that’s worthy of your devotion. I’m essentially like you.’”
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