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Conversations with Mahealane

Today we’d like to introduce you to Mahealane.

Mahealane

Hi Mahealane, so excited to have you on the platform. So before we get into questions about your work-life, maybe you can bring our readers up to speed on your story and how you got to where you are today?
I was born in Hawaii and grew up on a family farm in Michigan. Early 2020 when I released my first single, “Hopeful Romantic” I decided to use my middle name, Mahealane (it means, the light of the full silvery moon). A special highlight is when I performed at SXSW with my band in 2022. I fundraised (thank you to all who supported the trip) and took my quartet to the Elephant Room in Austin. We played to a full room, my sister made merch and it was an amazing week and very validating as an artist to be there. My EP Magical Complicated, showcases my singer-songwriter side and my collab projects with my partner PRNDL bring out my improvisatory and playful horn melodies side. Trumpet is an essential part of my music and life and songwriting though cliché, has shown itself to be cathartic, necessary, and my way of communicating who I am to the world.

Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
I have always been musically supported at home within a musical family, but the experience of being a “female trumpet player” continues to bring out the nonsense of the world. I have had other musicians, teachers, and trumpet players (all men) telling me things like “play like a man”, “you’ll just be a trophy wife, not a real professional trumpeter”, “you don’t deserve your Master’s degree”, insinuations that I wasn’t “good enough” to move to Los Angeles to further my career here and challenge myself. I have been in many unsafe gig situations and uncomfortable environments that generally only cater to the needs of male-only bands. I am carving my own path in a male-dominated space while working through years of trauma, which is the focus of a future album.

Thanks – so what else should our readers know about your work and what you’re currently focused on?
I sing and write songs to process my feelings and play trumpet to feel alive. I am on a more recent journey of producing music in logic and will have an EP coming that showcases my perhaps stranger, more sandbox side of making music. I love recording lots of trumpet and flugelhorn as a part of the song’s fabric, not icing on the cake (don’t get me wrong though, I love recording for others in that way). On my collabs with PRNDL (Space Jams EP and our album San Fernando Laser Tag), we work together in a magical way that brings about a fun mix of his Electronic leanings and my orchestral, bebop, and Bossa Nova influences. I think my willingness to be flexible, learn new things, and be open to new musical experiences keeps me on my toes when creating music, but also performing with all kinds of bands and artists. At this point, my highlights are releasing music, performing at SXSW with my own project, performing with Harry Styles at Coachella, and touring on and off with the first (and only, I think) all-female Mariachi from NYC, Flor de Toloache – they’re up for a Grammy this year and I couldn’t be more honored to work with such formidable, badass women! Lastly, my partner PRNDL is leading a 6 piece band (including myself) called Low Poly Cactus that incorporates a couple of my songs, our previous collabs, and a whole new set of instrumental songs written by Adam Rochelle (PRNDL).

Can you share something surprising about yourself?
I twirled baton competitively till I was in high school. More recently, I started playing Skyrim for the first time this year, loved that and now am hooked on Bethesda’s new game Starfield.

Contact Info:

Image Credits
@withtheband, Ismael Jacobo, Sam Rochelle, Sachi Sato

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