Lauren Daigle is seeing fans of her music “take out all their emotions” following the release of her latest album, Look Up Child, in early September.
Daigle, who recently turned 27, spoke to PEOPLE about finding herself and seeing her music change people’s lives.
“People started blowing up my YouTube and my Instagram and saying, ‘Hey, I have wanted to commit suicide — this song completely just got me out of it,’” she says of her single “You Say.” “Because one person opened up their story, people just started commenting and saying, ‘I’m wanting to commit suicide, someone please help me.’”
“I’m watching these people take out all these emotions and literally flip upside down,” she continued. “That is the most humbling and freeing thing is seeing music and something that is a universal language actually come in and bring hope.”
Daigle explained that “You Say” is a reminder of “how valuable they are” and “how worthy of love they are.” The vulnerability and sound of her album seem to be what draw people into her music. She explains that people are simply “craving identity.”
“Wrestling with that [and] wanting to know the truth and wanting to know who I am,” she says. “There’s a solid truth that people can hold onto.”
Daigle, who was nominated for an American Music Award this year, explains that creating this album — which debuted at No. 3 on the Billboard Top 200 — was not easy, adding that she remembered “feeling disconnected and unsure of everything.”
It wasn’t until she visited Australia that she started to find “home” and explained that during a moment of prayer, she uttered the words, “this girl ain’t going nowhere,” which led to one of the songs on the album, “This Girl.”
“My producer said I sang, ‘This girl ain’t going anywhere’ and he said we should write that,” the Louisiana-born singer explains. “It just kind of subconsciously came out. I think that song really depicts the journey from then to now, realizing you’re never too far gone.”
Moments of prayer and gathering with her producers and team are normal for the Christian artist, as she says that most of her team is made up of close friends, which serves as a reminder of who she is.
“The beauty is that we all share the weight and the pressure together,” she says. “We are really intentional about while we’re out and about, like traveling to soak up those moments and those opportunities to rest together.”
“It’s making sure that you’re surrounded by people who aren’t just people who see you as a product, but people who actually know you and have been with you from the very beginning,” she adds. “They know you before any expectation or demand put on you.”
For Daigle, the focus of her life and her music is ensuring that she’s having fun — “if it’s not fun, we don’t want do it,” she explained.
“Where things are fun, that’s where your passion will be and it naturally spills to everyone around you,” she says.
Daigle says legendary artists like Aretha Franklin, Lauryn Hill, Whitney Houston and Amy Winehouse are some of her biggest influences while writing and creating Look Up Child. Listening to Adele, she says, helped her really accept herself as a singer.
“I remember when I heard Adele for the first time I was like, ‘Wow, wait, this is someone who has a husky register,’ she says, reminiscing about her early years as an artist. “It was something I could grab a hold of.”
Daigle is set to go on her United States Look Up Child Tour this fall, and she says that she’s excited to get on stage.
“There’s this communication that’s so pure, this vulnerability that’s so pure when it comes to playing on stage that I was really, really missing,” she says. “I got to get back to the music I love. The soul, the grit, the passion — I want to get back to those places.”