Who Is Lana Del Rey: 8 Things You Didn’t Know About the Musician

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Who Is Lana Del Rey: 8 Things You Didn’t Know About the Musician

Born on June 21, 1985, as Elizabeth Woolridge Grant, the world, however, came to know her as the sultry, vintage-vibed singer Lana Del Rey. She makes melancholic tunes, has a hypnotic voice, and carries a real-life aesthetic that you only see in Wes Anderson films otherwise. However, beyond the haunting melodies and cinematic music videos, there’s much more to Del Rey than meets the eye. 

Those who think moving to New York at the age of 18 to study Metaphysics at Fordham University is the most interesting thing about this singer, might want to check out the eight lesser-known facts about Lana Del Rey below. Her summertime sadness is real, but so is her love for football. Let’s get started.

1. She Has Had Multiple Stage Names Including Lana Del Rey

Lana Del Rey in 'Love' MV

Lana Del Rey, a name that now resonates with millions worldwide, wasn’t the first stage name the singer embraced in her early career. Elizabeth Woolridge Grant was first affectionately nicknamed Lizzy during her childhood. As she stepped into the world of music, she initially adopted the stage name May Jailer. She later shifted to Lana Del Ray, with an ‘a’. Eventually, she chose the moniker, Lana Del Rey, with an ‘e’. The inspiration behind the final stage name draws from the renowned actress Lana Turner and weirdly, the car model Ford Del Rey Sedan — though the exact reasoning remains a part of the artist’s mystique.

2. Lana Del Rey Once Lived in a Trailer Park

LDR in Ride

Lana Del Rey’s journey to stardom wasn’t without its humble beginnings. In 2007, the struggling artist secured herself a $10,000 recording contract with 5 Points Records. She chose to use the money not to party or for lavish indulgences but to relocate to a trailer park in North Bergen, New Jersey. It was during this time she transitioned from Lana Del Ray with an ‘a’ to the more familiar Lana Del Rey with an ‘e’. She gave time to these humble beginnings as she developed more resources, and made better contacts. She used this time to collaborate with producer David Kahne to further hone her unique sound.

3. Her Favorite Football Club is Liverpool FC

Lana Del Rey in 'Ride' MV

Behind the Henderson-aesthetic and melancholic music, Del Rey harbors a passion for football. Contrary to what some might expect from the queen of sadcore — she is an ardent supporter of Liverpool FC. This iconic English club, with its rich history and dedicated fan base, has captured the hearts of many, including Del Rey, particularly for the respect and attention they give to their fans. Though she might not frequently discuss it in interviews, her affinity for the sport and particularly for Liverpool remains.

4. Lana Del Rey’s Father Once Paid for Her to Record an Entire Album

LDR in Chemtrails Over the Country Club

Adding to the artist’s humble beginnings — her initial steps into the music industry were backed by her father, Robert England Grant, Jr. Grant used to make money investing in domain names in the internet’s burgeoning era and decided to help out her daughter out too. While her father’s financial support helped Del Rey in her early stages, it eventually became a topic of debate — with some speculating and generating controversies about the extent of his father’s influence on her career. 

5. She Went Viral With Her Song “Video Games”

LDR in High by the Beach

The song “Video Games” was released back in 2012. It debuted with nostalgic visuals, paired up with Del Rey’s haunting vocals. For some reason, the song resonated deeply with listeners and rapidly garnered thousands of views. Five months forward and “Video Games” had amassed over 20 million views.

It propelled Del Rey into the global spotlight within months. This viral sensation marked a major milestone in her career and cemented her status as an influential new voice in music — just as Billie Eilish has made her mark more recently. The track’s success was further celebrated when it was honored as the song of the decade at the Q Awards in London.

6. Lana Del Rey Has a Tattoo of Letter M on Her Left Hand

LDR In white mustang

Although not as intense as Post Malone’s, for instance — Del Rey too sports several tattoos that offer a glimpse into her personal life. Among these is a prominent ‘M’ tattooed on her left hand. This tattoo isn’t just an aesthetic choice — it carries deep personal significance as the letter stands for Madeline Hill, Lana’s beloved grandmother, whom she was exceptionally close to.

7. She Has a Fear of Being Mortal

Lana Del rey in NFR

Lana Del Rey’s hauntingly beautiful music includes hits like “Summertime Sadness.” While it’s a song covered by most famous singers of today — including even Shawn Mendes — only little is known that the song actually pulls inspiration from her deep-seated fear of mortality. This profound anxiety has fueled her creative process. It has impacted the decisions she has made in her life. The underlying fear has also negatively impacted her mental health over the years, leading to periods of depression and anxiety. However, all this has paved the way for her music to be a bittersweet reflection on life, love, and the transient nature of both.

8. Lana Del Rey Was Once Addicted to Drugs

Lana Del Rey in 'Born to Die'

Due to her mental health issues — in her younger years, she even battled drug addiction. This was a struggle that sent her to rehab (where her uncle was an employee) following her time at a boarding school. These experiences, while tough, have undoubtedly made her strong. Overcoming alcohol and drug addiction often results in profound mental strength, and Lana Del Rey has exemplified and channeled it into her music career.

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