DATE: APRIL 28, 2010
FROM: MARCEE RONDAN
SINGER, SONGWRITER, MUSICIAN
TO RELEASE HER
‘CLOSE AS AIR’ ALBUM
IN THE LATE SPRING
AT RADIO NOW
“I want my music to touch people, and lift them up” she says. “The world would be a very sad place without artists.”
With a formally trained world-class voice that has already been heard on Broadway, singer/songwriter/musician MALEA McGUINNESS’ warm, sensual vocals can now be heard in the forum she always wanted: a mix of contemporary pop, country and R&B. On her new album CLOSE AS AIR, due out in late Spring, MALEA’s vocals take flight in an array of tunes reflecting her musical influences.
The songs on CLOSE AS AIR, such as the title track–which pays tribute to one of her close friends and personal musical mentors–represent a longing for closeness and the kind of extended family MALEA feels she missed out on as a child. Raised by her grandparents in a strict environment with little access to pop culture, such as rock music, TV and movies, MALEA has found that camaraderie through the community that has formed on the Internet, where her music has been discovered by 40,000 fans on MySpace alone.
On CLOSE AS AIR’s newly released first single, the rocking “Spinning” (already at radio), MALEA empowers her listeners to keep their identities in a world that is “spinning so fast/we don’t know if this will last/we’re holding our ground/don’t give up now/though it’s hard to be somehow.” Two other stylistic directions are represented by the country-flavored “Birthday” and the orchestral soul of “Tonight,” which celebrates finally finding her one true love after the bittersweet romantic misfires of “Memories,” about her time as a struggling performer in New York City (“You were mine/For a time/And I knew you/For awhile”), and “No More,” where she gets rid of a troublesome ex (“Crazy doesn’t work with me no more”).
Elsewhere, “Falling” and “Time Will Show” are about being able to count on your friends for support in times of crisis, while her cover of the standard “Water Is Wide,” an Appalachian mountain song that could have come straight off the T Bone Burnett-produced O Brother Where Art Thou?, demonstrates her love for what she calls “real country music”: “Give me a boat/That can carry two/And both shall row/My love and I.”
Of her evolution from her formal opera training and Broadway stint to singer-songwriter, MALEA says, “I was burned out–and I wanted to express myself more than singing opera allowed me to. It was just time to make a change into more contemporary music.”
CLOSE AS AIR also allowed MALEA to further expand her guitar playing (the self-taught guitarist first picked up a guitar upon moving to Los Angeles). At the time, she was making a name for herself on the local club circuit, performing at the Viper Room, The Roxy, The Mint, the Knitting Factory and a headlining show at the El Rey. She then recorded her debut album TRUE BELIEVER with producer Scott Hackwith (Pete Townshend, Iggy Pop, The Ramones), which she released independently in 2007. The first single “Deeper” hit #16 on influential radio tip sheet Friday Morning Quarterback’s AC40 chart, while the follow-up (and first video) “Sweet Light” was Most Added, climbing to #3, with both in rotation on Sirius XM Satellite and Triple A stations across the country. She performed before 7,000 fans at the Summerfest Music Festival in Milwaukee, sharing the bill with B.B. King, Bon Jovi and John Mayer, then opened for Todd Rundgren at the Coach House in San Juan Capistrano. MALEA also just signed an endorsement deal for her own signature model acoustic and electric guitars with Korea-based Peerless Guitars.
The complete CLOSE AS AIR track listing is as follows:
Time Will Show
Close As Air