When Toronto-born Jadyn Lamb realized her younger sister was in an abusive relationship, she was alarmed. “We’re best friends and I’m really protective of her, so when I saw her in pain, it crushed me,” says Lamb. “When I heard her crying, I felt helpless.” In response, Lamb penned a song to help her sister navigate through. Bad Sign is “a story about manipulation, guilt, and finding the strength to escape abuse,” says Lamb. “It’s a message that it’s okay to cut toxic people out of your life.”

We chatted with Lamb this week. 

SDTC: Why did you want to address emotional abuse in your new single, Bad Sign?
JL: It’s a subject very close to my heart. Emotional abuse happens frequently in lots of relationships because it takes on different appearances. It can take years before someone even realizes it’s happening. I know firsthand how awful it can be, so when I saw my younger sister fall into the same trap, it devastated me. ‘Bad Sign’ is dedicated and in honour of my sister, and anyone else going through the same thing.

Who/what is commanding a lot of attention in your life lately?
Me! I’m focusing on myself more than ever. I’ve got big dreams and a lot of work to do, and taking care of myself is essential for success.

What have you learned about yourself in the past year?
I’ve learned that I’ve got a determination that runs deeper than any dream or wish. I was put on the earth to create music for the world, and that’s exactly what I’ll do.

What is a fun little-known fact about you?
I’m REALLY into video games. When I was a little girl, I wanted to marry Master Chief from The Halo game series.

What book/film/show have you connected with recently, and what about it appeals to you?
I’ve recently finished watching The Star Wars prequel trilogy. It changed my life! Who knew Darth Vader was so dreamy? I’m starting to think I have a thing for guys in masks.

What’s the worst piece of career/life advice you’ve been given?
Someone once suggested I leave everything behind and move to America. It sounded fun and exciting at first, but “moving in with a stranger I met on the internet” with no money or back-up plan in a country I barely understand didn’t sit right with me. I think I’ll try my luck at home first.

What is your motto at the moment?
“Fortune favours the bold.” I’ve taken risks, pushed myself to be brave, and a little bit of luck has come my way. I don’t think it’s a coincidence.

What artist/album are you listening to constantly these days?
Bon Iver’s self-titled album. It was released in 2011, but I’ve never stopped listening to it. It’s the soundtrack of my life. Each song brings back memories – some good, some bad. The album was integral to me growing up.

What are the qualities you like least and most about yourself?
I love my confidence, and I hate my anxiety. It feels like a constant push and pull over which side will control me.

Rewind five years. What advice would you give yourself?
“Know your worth.” I gave the right parts of me to the wrong people and found myself left with nothing. They didn’t deserve to know me like that, but I was naive.

What is the most courageous thing you’ve ever done?
I feel that continuing to reach for my goals despite fear, doubt, and obstacles in my way is one of the most courageous things I’ve done. For me, being an artist means opening up and sharing my heart with the world. At times, I’ve been criticized for speaking out and had my feelings ridiculed. I’ve been told “No” more times than I can count, and I’ve spent many nights thinking I wasn’t good enough. It can be scary as an artist, but I’ll never give up. I’ll keep moving forward, no matter what changes around me.

What childhood memory makes you laugh out loud?
When I was younger, I used to force my grandmother into playing The Tomb Raider video games with me. She would get so confused, running into walls and accidentally falling into rivers. It was a riot for me then and still makes me laugh whenever I think back. I really treasure those moments.

What unnecessary object would you love to own?
I’m a huge Naruto fan, so I would love to own a real Hidden Leaf ninja headband. I’d wear it around my neck every day!

What tip, technique or hack has made your life better in the past year?
I’ve stopped overthinking and worrying about things I can’t control. Learning to let go has made me feel a lot lighter.

What issue do you wish people took more seriously?
There’s a long list of things I think should be taken more seriously, but I’ll try to keep it short: climate change, war, and inequality. The world is burning, people are suffering, and there’s a lot of fear. But we can make a difference if we stop to listen to each other.

What outfit makes you feel the most you?
If I’m wearing anything extremely sparkly or eye-catching, I feel the most like myself. The more dramatic, the better.

Who/what has surprised you lately, and how?
I’ve been surprised by how quickly things can change. A strong snowfall can cover a whole town, but completely melt away the next morning. Years of friendship can be forgotten overnight. Take advantage of every second, because it can disappear in moments.

Goals for 2020?
I’m going to live life positively and leave negative thoughts in the past. I’ve got a purpose, and I’ll see it through to the end.