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Lofi Girl delivers the soundtrack we all need for daily life

The web's most underrated composer is bringing order to chaos to a global Diaspora of digital-based life.

lo fi girl studies in her room avatar

Lofi Girl might just be the thread holding the world together.

No one really anticipated that the COVID shutdowns of 2020 would disrupt every aspect of our routines and bring every detail of our lives into question. The world seems to be suspended in a state of uncertainty. No one is quite sure how to proceed. Hope is retreating, and it shows. Daily life seems to be up against some invisible, shapeless resistance.

Sometimes all we need is a little direction. Enter: Lofi Girl’s 24-hour livestream of minimalist, low-fidelity beats.

In a time where everything comes and goes, Lofi Girl‘s 24-7 soundtrack generously encourages us to find composure and continuity. Like a warm cup of tea or a worn-in flannel still warm from the dryer, the mysterious melodist’s steadfast progressions help us turn potential into kinetic, enough to get out of bed in the morning.

Through her music, reclaim a small piece of lost structure. In her creativity, find the momentum needed to get through a daily task list. In her consistency find the continuity that has been lacking from our increasingly fragmented day-to-day lives.

Lofi girl is taking your laptop out of your backpack, neatly placing it on your desk at work. She’s quietly reading a book behind you when you’re folding your laundry in the evening. She is up late with you when you’re cramming for an exam, reminding you that if you study, you’re sure to ace the exam. Lofi Girl fills the room with a warm, gentle, understanding presence.

An anonymous benefactor

Serving up steady beats around the clock is no easy task, and through it Lofi Girl maintains immaculate neutrality. This is due in part to her anonymity, a topic that surfaces from time to time among her fanbase. The visual component that compliments her music is an anime illustration with subtle animation of a young woman working at her desk in her room. Her cat sits on the windowsill looking out at the city – every city.

Reddit community r/lofigirl speculates that the Pied Piper might be based in Lyon, France. But little is known about her true identity. True to form, the limited details provided in her social profile only serve to bridge pockets of Lofi Girl’s global diasphora.

The digital world is a new frontier, an experiment we were all thrust into. Reconciling the gaps in our sense of self in the context of the world at large is no easy task. The mechanism of allure operating here: The refreshing humility of a creator who seeks no flattery, criticism, attention, or judgement, for anything other than her art form, which she meticulously isolates and serves up in the middle of the night. No one saw who left the gift on the doorstep – there is no note, no return address. It’s not me. It is my message, in solidarity with the ethos of Banksy and Satoshi Nakomoto.

One billion and counting

Lofi Girl created her YouTube channel in early 2015. The channel features a live chat, a constant flurry of messages from listeners from around the world so quick on the scroll, it’s challenging to read in real time. Slow and steady, she massed a loyal following that dip in and out of her stream to recharge, freed from life’s expectations and return to their natural buoyancy. At any given moment, the YouTube’s most underrated mainstay has around 30,000 people tuned in – well over Madison Square Garden’s 20,000 maximum capacity. At the time of this writing, her YouTube channel is just shy of hitting one billions sessions.

She has amassed a superfan base on Reddit and discord. Subreddit r/lofigirl currently has almost 25,000 subscribers, all mostly describing what a grounding and positive addition the livestream has been in their lives.

It is clear from these forums and platforms that her fans see themselves in her artform and character. Many of the highest engagement posts on her fan forums are listeners drawing themselves into her animated avatar. She’s likely to crack 10 million YouTube subscribers in 2022. Her Spotify boasts a respectable 940,000 subscribers. The discrepancy between the two platforms highlighting her avatar’s presence as an indispensable part of the Lofi Girl experience – the difference between communicating with an old friend on social media and sitting across a table over a cup of coffee.

Her lyric-less playlists are gentle journeys that give your brain the flow and sense of forward progression it needs to get into the zone. It’s just the right amount of momentum: part sense of duty, part wonder, part reflective – always consistent, steadfast. It’s the perfect backdrop for working, studying, living, getting through what you need to get through. There is no volatility, no surprises in her music. It doesn’t rely on the repetition of pop music nor the build-up of electronic music. Yet, there is enough ongoing, nuanced, and textured variety to keep listeners’ mind activated and focused in a world of noise and overstimulation. Her work is neither happy or sad. It’s not angry nor excited. It’s accepting, understanding – a non-judgmental point of view that is a witness of the ordinary details of daily life.

Lofi Girl is sewing our realities back together

The channel is more a lifestream than a livestream; Lofi Girl is as much a humanitarian as she is a talented composer and curator. The ambiance captured in her tunes adds tonality to Millennial and Generation Z’s daily life.

And everyday, you can jump into her stream, inject the atmosphere with support, connect with thousands of other people tuned into her broadcasts at any given moment, all across the globe. All on the same beat and the same time – a shared reality. In the digital revolution, maybe you’re not as alone as you might feel. You belong.

Easily one of the most underrated artists on the web at large. Lofi Girl is an empathetic, reassuring, and understanding presence.

But above all, like the notes and chords of a song, Lofi Girl resyncs us with life’s flow – just what we need to keep moving forward.

Author

  • Tanja Fijalkowski is an award-winning writer, editor, and designer. A North Bay Area native, she has written for various financial, business, history, and science publications. She's a deep-dive researcher with a strong command of data analysis and simplifying complex concepts.

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