Hilary Duff Explains Why She Started Her Music Career: “I didn’t want to be Lizzie McGuire any longer.”
“For so long, people were just like, ‘Lizzie, Lizzie, Lizzie’ — and that still bothers me now, but it did for a while,” remembered the “Come Clean” singer.
Hilary Duff is opening up on why she began singing after establishing her acting career.
Duff revealed in a new interview on her How I Met Your Father co-star Josh Peck’s Good Guys podcast that she turned to music because she “didn’t want to” be so closely identified with Lizzie McGuire, the smash Disney Channel series that made her famous.
“I wanted to start singing at the time, but [Disney] wasn’t very keen. They didn’t want to sign me straight away at Hollywood Records, which was obviously the first place we went “According to the 35-year-old singer, the record label’s father-son executive combination, Rob Cavallo and Bob Cavallo, ultimately displayed interest in her singing career.
“They came on board, and then I started creating a record,” Duff explained, referring to her breakout album Metamorphosis (containing the smash “Come Clean”), which was released in August 2003, less than a year before Lizzie McGuire ended. “So they weren’t like, ‘Let’s just juice this for what we can.’ It was all my idea. I desired to sing. I didn’t want to be Lizzie McGuire any longer.”
Thinking back on the time, she recalls feeling as if everyone only viewed her as the persona. “For so long, people were just like, ‘Lizzie, Lizzie, Lizzie’ — and that still bothers me now, but it did for a while,” Duff explained. “I just needed to be my own person, and I suppose I believed music would be a fantastic way to reintroduce myself, which it was.”
But, as she began to make songs, the “With Love” singer felt that many of her fans were not ready for her to mature beyond the young girl they had grown to know on television.
“I would say that was five years of my life, just navigating becoming the person I wanted to be outside of who everyone else expected me to be,” Duff said. “I remember being on tour and having mothers approach me and say, ‘Never change!’ ‘No matter what you do, never, never, never change!'”
She was frequently impacted by such remarks, yet she never gave up trying to mature.
“I’d walk into my dressing room after a meet-and-greet and think, ‘What?’ They obviously didn’t mean anything by it, but can you picture telling an 18- or 17-year-old not to change? “Duff continued. “I was an angsty adolescent with a lot on my shoulders, so I wanted to change.”
Following Metamorphosis, which debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 and sold over three million copies in the United States, Duff released the self-titled album in 2004, Most Wanted in 2005, and Dignity in 2007 before taking a musical hiatus. Breathe In. Breathe Out., her sophomore album, debuted at No. 5 on the Billboard 200 in 2015.
Duff also discussed the possibility of releasing another album in the future during the conversation.
“It’s not something I’ve done in a flash. I really want to. It’s a topic that I get asked all the time, and since I live with my husband — who’s a very good musician — they’re always like, ‘Well, what would be so hard? Put your kids to bed and go to the studio. Install a booth in your home.’ “explained the actress from Younger, who is married to producer Matthew Koma.
Duff, who has three children — son Luca (with ex-husband Mike Comrie) and daughters Banks and Mae with Koma, 35 — went on to say, “I barely have enough time right now to devote to my three children, whom I chose to bring into the world. So spending more time away from them seems like something I can’t quite grasp.”
Fans, however, should not give up hope for new songs. “I miss that version of myself, and I definitely believe I have more to do in that area,” she remarked. “I’m simply not sure when.”