For anyone out there who’s a dreamer, especially all the musicians and actors and artists out there who are doing everything they can to make a living out of their art- this song is for you.
“Florist by Day” is part of Mackenzie Leighton’s EP Fleuriste (2021). Full of fresh indie pop music, Fleuriste tells the story of a florist by day, musician by night. This actually happens to be Leighton’s personal biography of the past year in her own life working as florist during the day and as musician at night.
Currently a Paris-based artist, it is interesting to note that Leighton originally grew up in a small seaside town in Maine. She played classical piano all throughout her childhood, and at 18 years old left Maine for New York where she played in several folk, jazz, and indie-pop inspired bands, including Mizuna and Strange Loops. In 2017, Leighton embarked on a journey alone to Paris and kicked off her solo musical career, electric guitar in hand.
What I can appreciate most about Leighton is the truth and honesty found in her lyrics- “Wouldn’t it be nice to be singing all the time?”… This is definitely a thought that has crossed my mind as a singer/songwriter as well, and I’m certain Leighton and I aren’t alone in that.
She expresses her exhaustion and the struggle to find the balance between working her day job as a florist, and finding meaningful work as a musician- a reality and shared experience that isn’t talked about enough by singer-songwriters.
Not only is “Florist by Day” paving the way for artists lyrically, but Leighton’s sound is simply just super fun and catchy. Surrounding herself with French musicians and producers, she hosts this electronic indie pop sound with style influences of both traditional folk singers like Joni Mitchell and more modern singers like Phoebe Bridgers.
In an interview with PopFad, she says that at the time she wrote “Florist by Day” she was listening to a lot of music by Benny Sings and Sunni Colon, which was additionally part of her creative inspiration.
It’s ironic how “Florist by Day” has such an uptempo feel, when in reality, she wrote it out of frustration. Leighton says she knew she wanted the song to be a bit more uptempo with a groovy bass line, so that it could have a “feel good” sound. She explains that the reason for this is that she tried to write the lyrics with optimism, as if she were giving herself a pep-talk.
She adds, “It’s the only song I’ve ever written in the third-person but talking to myself! I needed a song to reassure myself that I was ‘doing just fine.’” Her advice to listeners is to “make sure to find the time for those creative things that nourish you, without fear of failing or not “making it”.