Something a bit different to my normal posts…
I am a massive Lana Del Rey fan and whilst I love her official albums, her unreleased stuff deserves just as much recognition. However, finding her unreleased songs online can be a bit of a challenge, so I’ve created this collection of links to try and make the process easier. Even if you don’t like her official albums you should give some of her unreleased material a listen, as the sound is completely different. This contains my personal favourite unreleased songs, but there are many more out there!
(It’s worth noting that videos of these songs often disappear or are deleted from Youtube. All the videos I’ve included links to were available when this post was originally published.)
Sirens was written and recorded in 2005-2006, under the name May Jailer. Lana only knew six guitar chords when she wrote it, but she still managed to write some heartbreakingly beautiful songs, full of raw emotion. I think the songs on Sirens feel more personal than her later stuff (in particular the Born To Die era)- less like she’s playing a character. My favourites from the album are:
Lana Del Ray A.K.A Lizzy Grant
(No, I didn’t misspell the title!) This was Lana’s first studio album. It was released online in 2010, but was pulled after only a few months due to lack of funding. I think the songs on this album vary a lot; some of them are rich and haunting, yet there’s a couple of them I really don’t like (on second thoughts, it’s actually just Brite Lites that I hate!). Here are the ones I think are worth listening to:
- Kill Kill
- Oh Say Can You See
- For K Part 2 (demo)
- For K Part 2
- Mermaid Motel
- Pawn Shop Blues
- Put Me in a Movie
- Yayo (this song is also on Born To Die, but this is a different version)
I’m not entirely sure which albums/eras these songs came from, but I love them anyway!
- More Mountains
- Pin Up Galore– If you told me the instrumental of this song was by Angelo Badalamenti I’d believe you. (All the versions of this available on youtube are pitched, but this one is the closest to the original I could find.) Here’s a live version from the Lizzy Grant days if you want to hear it un-pitched.
- Fordham Road
- Serial Killer
- Boarding School
- Kinda Outta Luck
- Money Hunny
- Roses Bloom For You– A snippet Lana posted on Instagram before Lust For Life came out. Sadly, it didn’t end up on the final album.
- Trash (Miss America)– The most hypnotic and beautifully understated of all her songs.
- 1949 (the acoustic demo version is just as good as the proper one)
- Okay, I know it’s not unreleased, but this live performance of Million Dollar Man is absolutely amazing (3:17 onwards, in particular).
In case you’re interested…
- This is an interview Lana did when promoting Lana Del Ray A.K.A Lizzy Grant.
- If you want to know about her backstory in more detail, this is a good place to start. It also contains loads of old photos and video clips of her.
- This is a short film she had a small role in during her Lizzy Grant era.
- This video contains some footage of Lana when she was just starting out.
- This is footage from a very early show she did, when she was still calling herself Lizzy Grant.
Like I said, there are tons of these songs floating around on the internet, so do a bit of digging and see what you find! I might keep adding to this post as I discover more of her unreleased songs, so check back for more…