How Lucy Spraggan Transformed Her Mind and Body by Going Sober
Singer-songwriter Lucy Spraggan, who spent her early years in music in Sheffield before finding fame with the X Factor, has recently undergone an amazing transformation
Tell us a bit about your background and journey into music.
I started off playing shows in Buxton and Derbyshire, which is where I spent quite a bit of my life. When I was 18 I toured America for three months and, when I came back, I felt like Buxton was a little bit too small and I really wanted to move somewhere where music was a lifeline – so I moved to Sheffield and I started playing around there. I’ve been writing songs since I was 10, so nearly two decades, which is weird.
What made you want to become a singer-songwriter?
I don’t ever feel like it was a conscious choice. I’ve always just written songs. My mum showed me some poems the other day from when I was younger and they’re actually pretty good for a child. It was just something I did, and I still don’t have to force myself to do it now either. It just happens.
Who inspires you musically?
It’s definitely changed overtime. I used to listen to the likes of Kirsty MacColl and Don McLean, but musically everything has changed. Lyrically I listen to a lot of pop music. People wouldn’t guess this, but my most listened to artist on Spotify last year was Ariana Grande. I think pop has had a big influence on my writing, but sonically I listen to a lot of Western music and Bollywood music.
Tell us a bit about your new single.
This is actually the single with the heaviest influence from Bollywood. I was listening to the Bollywood Spotify playlist while I was skipping and I had an idea in my head for the music. I got a guitar riff stuck in my head so I wrote it down and the song was made. Lyrically, Animal is about going back to basics, stripping everything back from yourself.
What can we expect from your new album?
The album is called Choices and it’s based around the choices that I’ve made in the last two years. It covers my divorce, my sobriety and my fitness.
You’ve undergone a recent transformation. Talk us through that and what you’ve been through over the past couple of years to get to where you are today.
In July 2019 I decided to stop drinking and that was a huge thing for me because I’ve always been an avid drinker. My life was heading in a direction that I didn’t really want it to. I was married but spending all my time on the road and I was trying to hold down both lives and I got myself into a bit of a pickle. I was drinking to escape from that. I realised that I’d been drinking to try and escape most of the problems in my life, so I decided to eradicate that behaviour and change it. It sort of ruled my life but once I stopped drinking, naturally, fitness found its way into my life. I started running last January, three weeks later I did my first 10K and three weeks after that I did my first half marathon – I’ve taken to it like a duck to water, and I love running. Yes, I’ve had a physical transformation, but really it’s the mental transformation that means the most to me.
Who inspires your fitness regime?
One of my really good friends lost five stone and he’s amazing, so he inspires me. There are all kinds of people who inspire me but I do this for myself because I knew that I wasn’t going to end up in a good place if I carried on doing what I was doing.
Since going sober, how have you found creating music?
I’m so much more productive than I used to be and everyone I know says the same. It’s like you get a new lease of life.
What advice would you give others contemplating going sober or adding more fitness into their lives?
Don’t give up. It is hard to change your life but eventually it’ll become a part of you and you will feel better.
What are your thoughts on dry January?
I think it’s amazing. If you give yourself a chance to have a break from something it’s an opportunity to learn about yourself, and your relationship with alcohol.
What’s your favourite thing about Sheffield, and what do you miss about it?
I miss being able to enjoy the live music atmosphere every night. In Sheffield there’s always a huge band performing somewhere and you’re always welcome. I miss that so much.
What are your goals in music and fitness now?
In life, I’m hoping to move a little closer to my family as last year taught me that family is so important. With music I just want to get back out on the road and I hope the opportunity comes sometime soon.
Lucy’s new single ‘Animal’ is available to stream from 8th January and her album ‘Choices’ is set to be released on 26th February. You can pre-order the album at lucyspraggan.com