Lauren Denitzio (Worriers)

Updated: Apr 27, 2021

“The more we can all be kind to ourselves and figure out how we want to walk through the world, the more we can help others do the same.” – Worriers’ Lauren Denitzio

Finding your place in the world can be incredibly difficult. Given the current political climate, societal norms, and the everyday stress that life brings, finding a space where you can authentically be yourself can be a dime a dozen. Lauren Denitzio (They/Them), leader of the bicoastal punk band Worriers and artist, is here to say you don't have to navigate it alone. I recently connected with them where we touched on their new album You or Someone You Know, talked about tackling controversial topics through different avenues, and gave advice on how we can all take a step towards making the scene more inclusive.

Art and music have always been a constant part of Denitzio’s life. Having started both at a young age, they’ve spent most of their life with both mediums as the focus. “I’ve been drawing for as long as I can remember and went to school for art, so most of my training is on that side of things. I taught myself how to play guitar when I was 14, after having taken piano lessons since I was little. Worriers started as a side project when I was still in another band, but pretty quickly became my main focus as a songwriter.”

Although Worriers has always been the main focus for Denitzio, that came to a screeching halt this year. Like all bands in 2020, Worriers are not able to tour right now due to the pandemic. The band had just come out with their most recent album, You or Someone You Know, in March right before the country was put into quarantine. While it was disheartening to put out a new album and not be able to tour it, Lauren had to find new ways to spread the music and the message that came with it. “It was really disappointing, but I’ve been learning new ways to adapt. Livestreaming is one way, but I’ve also shifted my efforts to my newsletter Get It Together. It gives me a way to talk about a lot of different issues that aren’t just new songs or merch.”

These issues that Denitzio talks about can be seen as controversial by some. From police brutality, abortion, LGBTQ, and more, these topics can be hard to address but are more important as ever given our current political climate. Regardless of how tough the subject matter can be, it doesn’t phase Lauren when writing a new song or creating a new art piece. “I don’t think about whether or not someone might agree with me, so maybe things come out in a more honest manner. Some of those things might be controversial but I try not to think about that aspect. These are things that I’m passionate about.”

Touching on these topics, specifically within the punk community, Lauren has noticed the growth within the scene in terms of inclusivity and the acceptance of all races, genders, and sexual orientations. While punk may not have been seen as a safe space for some of these groups specifically when it first started, Denitzio has noticed there are more individuals who proudly identify themselves within the collective. “When you take the time to look and really pay attention to who is releasing music or doing livestreams or touring when that’s a thing again, you find plenty of folks who aren’t cis-straight-white folks in bands.” This is especially important when creating a conversation on this very topic. Lauren explains that by putting an effort into broadening the scope in terms of music, one can find that they can create a safe space for people to talk about things they may not feel are being represented. “When you make an effort to not just cover and talk about the same bands over and over, you end up making space for a wider range of people. I can already see that a lot of outlets and zines are starting to be more self-aware and make more space for people, and that’s awesome.”

Creating a space for all people to feel included is what punk thrives on. It was started by outcasts as an outlet for people who felt alone, ignored, and/or misrepresented. It allows people to feel okay, to feel included, and to let out aggression built up by society, family, or personal struggles. It’s a space to unapologetically be yourself and that’s something Denitzio hopes it continues to be. They offered some words of encouragement for anyone who may not feel comfortable in their own skin right now. “It’s really important to find a way to not feel like you have to apologize for just being who you are. Feeling like the odd person out in the room can make you feel guilty for making other people uncomfortable and that just shouldn’t be the case. That’s on them.”

Denitzio also had some parting words on how we can all work together to create a space where everyone can thrive. “The more we can all be kind to ourselves and figure out how we want to walk through the world, the more we can help others do the same, and that’s really the end goal. Taking care of yourself, in the end, makes you a better member of your community, makes you a better friend and it’s important to take the time to do that.”

Follow Lauren Denitzio and Worriers on Instagram at @lauren_denitzio / @worriersmusic, @worriersmusic on Twitter, and Worriers on Facebook. You can purchase “You or Someone You Know” here.