Monday, May 4, 2020

Maya La Maya Visits Section 36!

Section 36 Music has another visitor! Maya La Maya is a talented singer, and I was thrilled when she agreed to visit with us and discuss her releases, her musical accomplishments and more. I’m sure you’ll enjoy everything she has to say.

So, let's see what happens when Maya La Maya visits Section 36!

I enjoyed your album “Pain, Panic, & Perfection”. What can you tell me about it?
I’m so glad you liked the album! This album took me three years to finish, and showcases five years of my musical growth. The name Pain, Panic, and Perfection comes from my love of alliteration, because first and foremost I will always be a songwriter. But the album describes my first few years at Berklee and some of the hardships I had to go through, how I overcame those obstacles and how they ultimately made me stronger. I had a rough relationship that caused me a lot of self-doubt and trust issues, I came face to face with a lot of discrimination (I am a bisexual, bilingual latine/hispanic woman, it was gonna happen), and my struggle with choosing music as a career path (even though my family supports me, they sometimes project doubts in my success which definitely causes me some pain). But the album is also about how I overcame these, hence “perfection”. I’m a very strong advocate for LGBTQ+, POC, and immigrant rights (my mother immigrated here from Spain around 27 years ago). The album is rooted in collaboration as well. I have over 30 people on this album, never once had the same band in a session, and it even has different producers on some songs. This was probably the reason it took 3 years to do, but I’m glad I did it, because I was able to share my music with some absolutely incredible musicians who truly turned it into something special. 

That was released on the heels of your single with Danny Corbo, “Know You”. What was that like to put together?
Danny Corbo is a friend and incredible musician/songwriter. It was really fun writing Know You with him. I remember us being in the practice room at Berklee and he came up with this guitar part and I looked at him like OMG and immediately started singing, and Know You is what came out! The single was released at the same time as my music video! The video was super fun to make, we used a bunch of locations around Boston, and the actors in the production did amazingly. Fun fact: it was the first time I had ever truly danced after my knee injury which took place a few months before in a Hip-Hop dance class. All choreo was done by my roommate at the time and best friend, Zinzi Carolissen (the curly haired dancer in the video), shot by Peter Xiong. We all came together to make something memorable and I think we accomplished that. 

You’re a student at Berklee College of Music. What’s the most important thing that experience has done for your career?
I think that being a student at Berklee College of Music comes with a lot of privileges, one of them being the amazing musicians that you meet. The connections I’ve made here have been instrumental in shaping my career. If it weren’t for Berklee, I would not be signed to Creative Code Music and Management, nor have had the means to even create my music as professionally as I did. My professors have become my colleagues, and my peers have become my friends. Berklee is truly community driven, and having their name attached to your bio opens a lot of doors for you in the music industry. Internships, job opportunities, and gigs have all been gotten using the Berklee name on your resume. I truly enjoyed my time there. 

What is your favorite part about performing in front of an audience?
Photo By Kelly Scky
When I perform, I always get nervous speaking in between songs because it’s what’s expected and I never find the right thing to say, but when I’m in the song and I just look out into the audience and lock eyes with one person, and I see that what I’m singing is resonating with them and they’re singing with me, I get chills. When any person comes up to me after the show and says “Where can I find this song, I need to feel this way again” it brings me profound joy that I didn’t know I could feel. And that only comes from speaking with people. I’m a huge people person, I need people to survive. This quarantine is doing a bit of a number on me, but the only way I’m staying sane is by writing music in the hopes of one day soon having that connection again with someone who says “yes, I feel the same way” or “your song healed me”. That’s all I ever want out of my music, is for it to sync with other people’s lives. 

Who/what would you consider to be your biggest musical influences?
Photo by Annie Elise
My biggest influences have to be Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson, Nora Jones, Chicago, Billy Joel, and Alicia Keys. I grew up listening to my dads records, always 80s and always very piano based. I’d also have to say that one of my other influences is Claude Debussy, because I was born to two classical pianists and grew up being trained to be just that. I started going in a different direction after I was 11 and wrote my first song. 

Right now, what would you say is your biggest career challenge?
At the very moment my biggest career challenge is not being able to perform in front of a live audience because this pandemic has definitely narrowed my possibilities for income, but I’m currently working on a solution by starting my own live-streaming concert series dedicated to helping musicians generate revenue. We’re called TribeLive (you can find us on instagram @tribelivemusic) and our first concert will be held on the 25th of this month, Saturday at 7pm! 

What are your immediate career goals?
My immediate career goals are to release my upcoming single called Don’t Say It Back (release date June 6!), continue to develop a community with TribeLive, and keep afloat until it’s safe to go outside! I truly miss being able to sit outside with the hustle and bustle of the city and just write a song on my ukulele. Now that I’m in the countryside (staying with my mother in Maine) it’s a bit eerie not hearing the rumble of the T or the argument someone is having a few doors down.

I can’t wait for that single to be released!

As always, I want to thank Maya for visiting, and for allowing me to use so many fantastic pictures to accompany the interview.

I highly recommend you check her out on Spotify so you can hear her wonderful music firsthand! 

Since I know you’ll also want to follow along with her to see what she's up to, I suggest check out her Instagram account and give it a follow. It’s a great way to make sure you don't miss a thing she has going on.

You should also check out her Section 36 Music page. There you'll find more links, pictures, and samples of her music. It's a great way to enjoy everything Maya has to offer all in one place.

Thanks again Maya La Maya, and good luck in reaching your goals! 

No comments:

Post a Comment