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Madison Malone on EP, ‘I & II’: Deals with basic human emotions

I am SO stoked that my I & II EP is out. I came up with this idea to record two versions of five very intimate, vulnerable songs that I had written. So, it is a double EP with five songs, ten tracks total. Within the EP, I speak about missing my childhood home, facing my weaknesses, coming out and loving out loud, and depicting what I want my love life to look like. This collection deals with basic human emotions, and I hope that you find a piece of you within a piece of me.

When you were young and started sneaking out and playing covers in local dive bars, what music were you covering?

I loved covering every type of music, but it really depended on where I was playing. I wanted to be able to catch everyone’s ears, get them to look up from their drink or meal. If I was playing at a biker bar, I’d be covering classic rock like The Eagles & Linda Ronstadt and country music like Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley. If I was playing at a supper club, I’d cover Adele, Billy Joel, and Alicia Keys. If I was at a winery, I’d be playing Top 40 hits like Beyoncé and Imagine Dragons. I’d play over 50 songs a night!

Who were your musical influences?

My house was filled with a whole spectrum of different kinds of music while I was growing up. One morning we’d have the Beatles playing and then in the afternoon, we’d be listening to Aretha Franklin. Other bands my family would have playing from the boom box were the Indigo Girls, The Supremes, Sarah McLachlan, Bruce Springsteen, John Hiatt, Warren Zevon, Garbage….

Once my brother, sister, and I got older and started requesting artists, I found myself drawn to Aaliyah, Sara Bareilles, Brandi Carlile, Beyoncé, Jason Mraz, Colbie Caillat, Destiny’s Child, Highasakite, and Aurora. I’ve always just been a lover of music, and I believe that my own music has blossomed because I was introduced to so many different kinds of music growing up.

When did you begin your musical journey?

My musical journey began when I was 10 years old. I sang for the very first time in public at my grade school’s talent show. I sang “Part of Your World” from the Little Mermaid. There is a video of this moment somewhere on Youtube….

When you began writing your latest music which was very personal, how did you approach the writing process?

The cool thing about these songs is that I didn’t decide to record an EP and then start writing songs for the EP. What happened was, I had some REALLY personal, intimate songs that I had already finished writing all around the same time and THEN realized that they would fit perfectly in a sweet collection about the human experience.

Tell us about the EP which is titled I & II. There are five songs on the EP, but each song has two versions. What was the inspiration behind that?

I had already had “Fragile Heart” (eventually became “Fragile Heart 1”) and “Treehouse” (eventually became Treehouse 2) recorded. However, when listening back to these recordings, I felt like something was missing. With “Fragile Heart,” I wanted the listener to be able to hear strings, harmonies, percussion…I wanted to be able to capture the way this song sounds when I play it with a full band. As for “Treehouse,” I loved the electro-pop production, but I also heard a more intimate, raw version in my mind. So, I had this idea to make two versions of each song. When looking at what I had written lately, I had three other songs that I also thought would benefit from doing this two version process. Alas, I decided to create two versions. The songs with a “1” at the end are more stripped-down, intimate…like what you would hear at a show if it was just me and a piano. The songs with a “2” at the end are produced with the full band: guitar, strings, drums, harmonies, synths. I wanted to be able to capture a full concert vibe.

What do you want your listeners to take away from your music?

I want people to know that it is beautiful to feel your feelings. That by being vulnerable, you actually show your strength.

What instruments do you currently play?

At shows, I am seen playing the piano and guitar. I also know a little bit of Godsmack on bass!

Share with us a little about your instruments in terms of brand and why you play those brands?

I use a Nord Piano 3. I am totally in love this baby. It is almost like playing with the real thing. I just had a conversation with John Mayer about playing the keys live. He said that he felt bad for pianists because we aren’t able to haul our baby grands or uprights everywhere we go. To which I said, yesss, that is true, however, this Nord is about as close to the real thing as you can get! I am such a lover of this instrument.

As for guitar, I play a Taylor 314ce. She is such a sweet, raw instrument. I purchased this one about five years ago and have never had a complaint. Every time I plug in, the sound is reverb-y, vibe-y, and sweet.

About Madison Malone:

Madison Malone is stepping out of her artistic shell, creating music that uses the light to recognize the dark. Her new music is the beauty created beneath the destruction.

Raised in a small farm town in Wisconsin, Madison was an anomaly in her blue-collar city. She started sneaking into rural dive bars at the age of 15 to play cover songs, paid only in pizza and tips. After seven years of performing other people’s music, Madison felt inclined to evolve and write about her own troubadour experiences. To pursue this neon journey of self-discovery, the singer-songwriter moved to Los Angeles in late 2016. Through all of these experiences, Madison was developing her personal artistry.

Madison’s new music carries thought-provoking messages, whilst simultaneously transporting you elsewhere, she confides, “I hope my music inspires people to realize the beauty and intricacies of our similarities and differences and that there is strength in both”. With the hope that speaking about her own experiences from an honest and genuine level, it will encourage others to share their own, Madison declares, “We need more stories in the world, people with diverse backgrounds, varying experiences, various lives.”

Having written for artists at Sony Music, as well as performing at some of the world’s largest music festivals including SXSW and SUMMERFEST, where she was voted ‘Favorite Emerging Artist’, Madison Malone is continuing the next chapter of her musical endeavor. With the intention for her music to be the saving grace in times of distress, Madison is on a mission to plaster the sky with the eyes of love and hope.

Tara Low



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