Though I’ve been making and performing music for almost 10 years, “Sober From You” is my first full-length release:
It catalogs my struggle to overcome the people, places and things that threaten to steal my happiness, joy and emotional & physical freedom.
I was 19 and a sophomore at the University of Pennsylvania when I turned to singing and songwriting as a source of catharsis during the early stages of a fast-and-furious battle with alcoholism, the throes of an eating disorder that had plagued me since age 14, and an onset of the sheer agony that is powerlessness over people (having been introduced to the vastness between addictive lust and healthy romance at this time…). That’s when I wrote tunes like “Dirty Laundry,” which is about the struggle to shed a double life, “Sober From You,” which personifies a drug and the anguish of withdrawal, “Trigger,” which compares an unhealthy relationship to emotional suicide, and “Not Calling,” which is about what it feels like to receive all blame for mutual harm done between two people.
There was something about expressing pain through chords and lyrics that gave me a release I’d never felt before; one that I certainly didn’t get from stuffing myself with booze and food and attention. Music probably kept me alive during what was the first of a few dark times before I successfully entered recovery on November 3rd of 2010. Since then, with the support of 12-step programs and their members, I’ve maintained uninterrupted sobriety and examined and treated my toxic relationships with food and (emotionally unavailable, older) men, and though it all, music has never left my side. I started to write songs tinged with a little more hope like “Come Undone,” which is my positing on how a healthy relationship looks and feels, “Fireflies,” which discusses my process of spiritual growth. I also began to write songs that weren’t even about me or my past but situations, such as “Forbidden Me,” which is about a break-up who feels empowered rather than shattered, “Sun Runs Home,” about a one-night stand who wants more, and “Convenient Lover,” about a scenario and characters that simply came to me in a dream.
Though my goal is to be a successful writer-producer of film and television, music got me on that path, and I try as often as I can to hybridize my passions, such as with my original pilot, “Recovering,” (trailer) where the male lead, a famously sober rockstar, performs the acoustic version of “Sober From You” in the final scene as a means of establishing his authenticity. And, whenever I’m presented with an opportunity to combine my passion for recovery and music with visual arts, I get this sensation: It’s why I’m here on this planet. I’m here to use my art to help shift the stigma that surrounds people living in addiction and recovery, and if I can even impact one person with what I create, then I am successful.
Currently, Carly is adapting the award-winning novel, Sparrow Migrations, overseeing post-production on Recovering, her original one-hour pilot, producing a podcast, TheProcess.ink., and creating a video for UofM's Collegiate Recovery Program... she also makes music occasionally in order to maintain her sanity.