"I didn't tell anybody... I just let them see it": Hana Lili on her song
A 21-year-old Welsh artist has described hearing her song played on the popular ITV show Love Island as "surreal".
"I always write songs about very personal relationships in my bedroom with my guitar," said Hana Lili, from Sully in the Vale of Glamorgan.
"So it was quite bizarre seeing that then being played in front of somebody else’s relationship.”
Speaking with ITV Cymru Wales, Hana emphasised how "vital” such opportunities are for up-and-coming artists, and described her family and friends’ excitement at hearing her on the show.
Hana received a message on Instagram telling her that her song was going to be played on Friday’s episode of the ITV2 show.
“I thought, ‘Is this real? Is this not?’” she recalled.
“I didn’t tell my friends, because I thought if it doesn’t get played, that’s a bit embarrassing for me! So I didn’t tell anybody, I just sort of let them see it.
“So I watched it anyway just in case, and luckily it was played. It was exciting - I was ‘fangirling’ a bit – secretly though.”
Hana said her mum and sister are “absolutely obsessed" with Love Island.
“My little sister was probably more excited than me. She was sat in front of the TV with a camera, so that was cute.”
Hana said it's great to see such a popular show include music from up-and-coming artists alongside more well-known music.
“It’s a great way for young artists in particular to have that exposure, especially considering the past year and a half where we’ve not had the capability to perform live.
“That kind of thing, it’s so vital for any new artist’s career because it gives them that audience they wouldn’t necessarily have been able to reach without it.”
Hana started performing as a child through competing in the Eisteddfod.
“That’s where I sort of enjoyed singing and performing on stage," she said.
“Then when I was about 12 years old I realised, ‘oh, I have emotions!’ I started writing songs from that then, and I started teaching myself how to produce tracks as well and just carried on making music.”
She said that being Welsh “massively” impacts her music.
“Being Welsh is such a big part of my identity - not only as a musician, but just me as a person.
“It’s so exciting to see how much great talent there is in Welsh music, and how we have such a great community with venues like Clwb Ifor Bach, and different funding projects like Forté or Horizons, which support new artists.”