Allie Concannon is one of those effortless looking girls. You know the type. The kind that gets photographed in a spectacular sequined gown, then casually tosses it off and throws on her boyfriend’s t-shirt and cutoffs, looking even more spectacular. When you ask Allie where she’s from, she casually replies Darien, Connecticut. Naturally one’s head fills with visions of fancy debutante parties, country clubs and the biggest houses in the world. Old money. Darien is one of the wealthiest communities in the United States. But Allie’s upbringing is far from that. Her mother continually took foster children into their home, thus the name “Foster” in her fabulous musical project dubbed Foster James. Her voice and music are mesmerizing.
Though Allie has been photographed for the pages of French Vogue by Inez van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin, her social consciousness takes precedence over celebrity and fashion parties. Don’t expect to see her Instagram feed filled with superficial selfies with clueless girlfriends in drunken states of stupor. This young woman is political and concerned with the things that matter right now in our troubled world. Allie is that kind of heart and soul girl that a musician writes a song about. Case in point, her handsome boyfriend, Sid Simmons, a musician and model who fronts the cool New York City band Girl Skin, wrote the most beautiful song about Allie called “Darling”. Of course, he did. You see, Allie is an AMERICAN BEAUTY.
RESERVED: Allie! You’re such a beauty. Tell our readers your beauty regimen.
ALLIE CONCANNON: Water, antidepressants, vitamins, lentil pasta, skin-care and community.
RESERVED: Do you wear designer clothing?
ALLIE CONCANNON: I usually don’t, unless I find it in a thrift store. I don’t have the money first off, but I also am pretty laid back with clothes. I just want something cheap that I feel good in.
RESERVED: Do you enjoy preforming onstage?
ALLIE CONCANNON: NO. Haha. I wish I did. Maybe I will eventually. But right now it still makes me very nervous. I definitely prefer the studio.
RESERVED: Tell us about working on your next album.
ALLIE CONCANNON: I’ve been working on it for 3 years so, I’m really hoping to be done by end of this year. I’ve been mixing by myself the past 10 months and I think that living with a song for a long time and being able to go back and work on it any time works best, but that’s just for me. I wouldn’t thrive in a studio session, too much pressure to make a lot in a short amount of time. Music is so different for everyone though, that’s why I love it. I’ve had a lot of friends collaborate on this and every time I do, I’m just blown away by what they bring with their own personal style and approach. There’s no right or wrong way to do it.
RESERVED: Record companies are known to take advantage of musicians. Are you seeking a record label at the moment? Or do you prefer to do it on your own?
ALLIE CONCANNON: I’m going to try to get a label when I’m done with this. I’d like to have someone handling business, If that’s possible. But if I don’t get something, I’ll do it by myself which is fine. I’ve managed my stuff this far so I could figure it out haha.
RESERVED: Does living in New York City feed your creativity and inspire you?
ALLIE CONCANNON: Yes the people here are what makes it so special, I think. There are so many artists and creatives that you’re constantly inspired and learning from your peers.
RESERVED: Social media and “influencers” are such a big deal these days. What are your thoughts on this?
ALLIE CONCANNON: It’s a pathway to more autonomous businesses in some sense, but dangerous for mental health and creativity as we become too dependent on the approval of others. And influencers are silly.
RESERVED: How has coronavirus affected your life?
ALLIE CONCANNON: Well it’s been a game changer. A terrible illness spreading and taking lives of loved ones across the world, that has people living in fear. I’m grateful to every single person who has worked in this pandemic to help others. Coronavirus has also been an interruption to life as usual and given people more time than they’ve ever had to themselves to reassess their lifestyle, goals and what matters most. Personally, before coronavirus I was just trying to get by in the city to survive. I was working multiple jobs and staying home gave me more time than I’ve ever had to create and focus on art. I think that has been the case for a lot of artists. I think there’s a lot of art coming in the next year.
RESERVED: Black Lives Matter really came to attention this year with the horrible death of George Floyd. Racism is sadly still here in 2020. In your opinion, how can we overcome this and move forward?
ALLIE CONCANNON: Well it’s corrupt from the root. We’re a racist country, built on the backs of slaves after we took this land from indigenous people. Our history doesn’t bode well for us. Policing and the jail system was just a modern way for white people to maintain power. But some immediate things that can be done is to defund the police, and divest that massive amount of money back into the community (more mental health, after school care, the education system which desperately needs it, etc.). And this needs to be led by black people in government who can speak for their community, which is vastly underrepresented.
RESERVED: Pro-Life vs Pro-Choice is really on a lot of people’s minds these days. What are your feelings?
ALLIE CONCANNON: I grew up with too many foster siblings coming from abused homes where their parents were underpaid, overworked, stressed and ill-equipped to care for a child. Basically just not receiving mental health help the way they should be. So to believe that every time a group of cells come together and a child is “conceived” – that MUST be what happens? There needs to be options for women, who can choose whether they want to bring a child into this world or not. If men could get pregnant I truly believe this would not be a topic up for discussion.
RESERVED: Women’s rights are still an issue. In your mind, has it progressed?
ALLIE CONCANNON: It’s progressed in the sense that, yes. In the past women couldn’t vote and now can. Women are in the workforce more than ever. But women still make less than men. We live in a patriarchal society that is designed by and for men, and everything is through that tinted glass. And this not only does a disservice to women but also to men.
RESERVED: Sid Simons is a very talented musician and your boyfriend. How did the two of you meet?
ALLIE CONCANNON: He is. We met through Instagram actually, I reached out to work with him but I didn’t know that he’d been following me for 3 years already. He didn’t tell me until a little while into dating haha it was really cute. He’s my most favorite person.
RESERVED: Sid’s band Girl Skin is your favorite band. How did you react when you first heard the song “Darling” that he wrote for you?
ALLIE CONCANNON: I honestly can’t really remember how I reacted. We were working together a lot at the time so I think I heard it kind of as he made it. But it’s very sweet and a great song.
RESERVED: 2020 was such a huge mess. What are your expectations for 2021?
ALLIE CONCANNON: I think when Biden comes into power things will settle down a little. There’s obviously so much work to be done but, at least a madman won’t be in charge anymore. I hope the issues that really came to light in 2020 are addressed starting with the government in 2021