Introducing: Maya Hawke

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Introducing: Maya Hawke
Hometown: New York
Listen to: ‘By Myself’, ‘Coverage’, ‘So Long’

Maya Hawke, 21-year-old actress, model and singer-songwriter is set to release her debut album Blush on 19th June. All proceeds from her merchandise will go to The Food Bank for New York City; you can get your hands on a t-shirt, CD, vinyl or a cap. So far, Hawke has released three tracks from the upcoming album with a music video for one and live covers on her Instagram and YouTube channel for the others.

The record is not going to include her 2019 releases ‘To Love a Boy’ and ‘Stay Open’, which were softer melodic songs. I love these songs because they have a mellow tone that is rich in acoustic guitar but relaxed with heartfelt lyrics. I expect her 12 track debut album Blush will carry the same tone given that Grammy award winner Jesse Harris is writing the accompanying music.

Hawke’s first release was in March with ‘By Myself’, a strong country-rooted track. The woody tones of her voice alongside some beautiful sincere lyrics engage with the criticism and judgement everyone experiences (“And I’m beating up myself”). Some of Hawke’s lyrics such as “If I were really alive could I / Make it through everyday dreaming” feel a little mashed together, but they evidently mean something to her. Hawke told Pitchfork that the album: … is a collection of secret messages, hidden communications with the people in my life.” 

This is evident in ‘Coverage’, where she says, “Growing up a memory / Becoming what I used to be.” Hawke told Pitchfork the song was about spending so much of her “life and energy living in other people’s stories, other people’s love affairs and other people’s pain… while still trying to hold onto my own.” The melody of this song is catchy and from what Hawke has said, it is clear she wants her lyrics to have power and purpose – I can only hope this will come through in the rest of her album. 

Her latest release was ‘So Long’, a down-trodden track filled with angst, yet it is empowering: “I am not a coward / I am just afraid”. Hawke said in an Atwood magazine interview that no one would describe a melancholy song as empowering, but upon listening to Lucinda Williams’ ‘Am I Too Blue?’, Hawke thought if Williams could make an empowering song and be melancholy, then she could too. This empowering melancholy is seen lyrically in ‘So Long’ with the lyrics “I woke up with a longing / for just that mistake… the glorious will always / be just around the bend”.

It looks like we’ll be able to expect some raw, unfiltered emotion with Blush, which looks set to expose Hawke’s vulnerabilities and upbringing. 

And here’s the album tracklist:

  • 1. Coverage
  • 2. By Myself
  • 3. A River Like You
  • 4. Menace
  • 5. Hold The Sun
  • 6. Bringing Me Down
  • 7. Cricket
  • 8. Stay Open
  • 9. Catch Me
  • 10. Rose and Thorn
  • 11. To Love A Boy
  • 12. Goodbye Rocket Ship

You can follow Maya on Instagram and Spotify, like her page on Facebook

Words by Polly Dale

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