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Neon Tommy - Annenberg digital news

Interview: Meiko On Her New Album 'Dear You'

Coral Rucker |
October 13, 2014 | 11:58 a.m. PDT

Staff Reporter

"Dear You is like an art project to me." (Concord Media Group)
"Dear You is like an art project to me." (Concord Media Group)

Meiko is a singer-songwriter who has been putting herself out there since 2007. Offering catchy and relatable songs such as, “Boys With Girlfriends,” “Stuck On You” and “Bad Things,” she's secured T.V. placements on "Grey’s Anatomy," "Pretty Little Liars" and "Vampire Diaries." She's even got a Fancy Feast commercial.

Having two albums under her belt, Meiko is ready to come out with a more confessional album titled, "Dear You." Neon Tommy talked to the singer about her new album and her future goals.  

NT: So how excited are you for the release of your new album?

Meiko: I’m very excited! I feel like I’ve been working on it for so long and I’m ready for it to be out. I feel like it’s been in some sort of purgatory just waiting to come out. I’m kind of ready to move on from it, not in a bad sense, but just have it out and see the reception it gets. If it does well then great, I’ll keep touring but if it doesn’t, I’ll go back in the studio and work on new stuff. I’m very anxious to see what the response is going to be.

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NT: It’s great to hear that you’re really ready for the release and ready to put yourself out there with this record. I’ve noticed that with your recent single “Be Mine” that the feeling of the song is a bit darker and rawer than your previous music. Will "Dear You" have that same feeling as the single?

Meiko: I don’t know, I feel like with the past couple of records, they haven’t been completely sweet, but there were a few songs from the last couple of records that got more notability than the darker songs. So when it was time to make "Dear You," I really wanted to make a real, raw record. I didn’t want to spice it up with a bunch of sweet sounding songs. Of course, I’m in a happy place in my life but I love writing sad songs and I wanted to make a collection of real stuff. I wanted to make a really confessional record and confessional records don’t always have to be so sweet and happy. "Dear You" is like a real art project for me.

NT: Were there any new collaborations that happened with the new album?

Meiko: Not really. As far as songwriting goes, I wrote all the songs on the album but I did co-write two of the songs on the record, and one of them was "Bad Things." We put up that song as a single about a year ago and everyone loved it. When I played it live, it was a little softer, slower and a little darker and I wanted to re-record a sexier version of the song. So I re-recorded it and it sounds really awesome. I wasn’t sure that I was going to put it on the record but I ended up loving it so much, it’s my favorite song on the record. So it’s kind of a re-vamp of the original that I wrote with my friend Tim Myers.

NT: I know that there are some new acts that have blown up providing darker and more confessional music like Tove Lo, BANKS and Lana Del Rey. Seeing as "Dear You" is a raw and confessional album, were there any musical or writing influences that you pulled from any new artists?

Meiko: I love all of the darker new artists that are coming out but didn’t get much music influence from them. What I did do was get into the studio and said to my producer, “I want to make this really minimal but with beats.” I didn’t want too much production, I wanted it to sound more confessional. So, he and I recorded the whole record, most of everything on the record we did ourselves. I think with doing that it’s similar in the vein of doing dark stuff. I wasn’t really referencing other artists when I was making the record. I have my go-to artists like Sade and Portishead, which maybe you can hear some influences of that in the record.

NT: Since the release of your debut album "Meiko," have you sensed a growth with your music?

Meiko: Oooh yeah! Since my first record, I’ve turned into a woman and that’s amazing. My view on relationships has changed a little bit. I’m not settling less when dealing with men anymore and I feel stronger, more confident and I definitely think you can hear that with this next record.

Concord Media Group
Concord Media Group
NT: You’re going to be touring this fall to promote "Dear You." What cities are you excited to see or see again?

Meiko: I’m finishing up one tour that I’m on right now. I got back from playing in Chicago and I think that’s one of my favorite cities in America to perform. During this past tour I was able to tour through the south which was cool. I was able to see a lot of family in Georgia. I got to play at University of Georgia in Athens which was really cool because I’ve never played in Athens before. In my next tour, I’m playing a music festival in Dallas and I’ll be playing before one of my favorite singer-songwriters Edie Brickell, who did the song, "What I Am." She’s from Dallas and I’ve been a huge fan of hers for so long and this is my opportunity to open for her and I’m really excited about that. I also have a tour in China coming up.

NT: You’re going to be be touring in China? 
Meiko: Yeah, it’s nuts! I’ll be there in two weeks and it’s going to be nine shows I’ll be performing. I’m going to be really busy but I’m just excited for the experience and the food. I love Chinese food. (Laughs) It’s fun to make and play music but I feel like deep down inside I play music just so I can go to different places and eat delicious food. I’m really excited to stuff my face with dumplings. 

NT: Is there one thing you’d like to say to people about your new album?

Meiko: Just that I’ve put my blood, sweat, tears and bones into Dear You and I’m finally happy that I created something that’s finally seeing the light of day, you know? Some musicians go through labels and make records that never come out. So I’m happy that my album is finally getting out into the world and I’m excited for people to hear it. I’m definitely blessed.

Check out her music here and buy "Dear You" on iTunes.

Reach Staff Reporter Coral Rucker here or follow him on Twitter here



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