Up and coming artist Lucy Woodward is thankful to have the power of America Online (AOL) on her side. In a little more than two months, the online community's AOL Music channel has served more than ha
Up and coming artist Lucy Woodward is thankful to have the power of America Online (AOL) on her side. In a little more than two months, the online community's AOL Music channel has served more than half-a-million streams of her debut single, "Dumb Girls." As a designated "Breaker" artist -- following in the footsteps of Avril Lavigne, Michelle Branch, Tweet, and Vanessa Carlton -- she's been featured throughout AOL Music's various properties, including the system's welcome screen, AOL Teens, Netscape, and Compuserve.
"I didn't even have AOL when it started," Woodward admits to Billboard.com. "But I signed up right away, and it has been great. In the places where you can rate the song, there are comments like, 'She rocks,' and 'I can't wait until the album comes out.' It's really encouraging to get that kind of feedback so quickly."
"Dumb Girls" is the first single from the New York-based artist's Atlantic debut, "While You Can," due March 18. Woodward's relationship with AOL Music began back in November, and includes a live "Sessions@AOL" performance that can be seen on demand, as well as the forthcoming premiere of the "Dumb Girls" video and a streaming "listening party" the night prior to the album's release. In addition, newfound fans who purchase the album will be able to unlock a never-before-viewed song from "Sessions@AOL."
The popularity of "Dumb Girls" is beginning to transfer to U.S. mainstream and adult top-40 radio outlets. This week the track moves up two positions on Billboard's Adult Top 40 chart to No. 37, and is being heard in markets across the country, including Los Angeles (KYSR), Chicago (WTMX), Houston (KHMX), and, most importantly to Woodward, in New York (WPLJ, WHTZ). "It's unreal," she says. "I walk into a deli or I'm in a taxi and I hear it. It's something I can't control, and it's there on these stations I grew up listening to."
Woodward believes that, along with AOL, it's the song's universal message that makes it accessible. "It's a breakup song," the 26-year-old artist says. "It's about getting your heart broken and not expecting it and not being smart enough to know it was gonna happen."
Co-written with songwriter/producer Kevin Kadish prior to signing with Atlantic, the song stems from a real-life breakup. The finished track is more or less the demo version that was one of the first songs the label heard. "I think we added one little drum loop, and that's about it," Woodward says. "It's very cool, because you write a song and record it in its rawest emotion, that's the way to go.
This week Woodward is in Los Angeles to shoot the video for "Dumb Girls." Soon after she returns to New York, she'll be off on a radio tour that will find her performing on the air around the country. She's hoping to get on the road with her full band in the near future. "We're auditioning one or two new guys, but I'm gonna have them ready to roll at a moment's notice," Woodward says enthusiastically. "I can't wait to get out there and play."