Interview: Malia Grace

by Deanna Chapman

Check out a recent interview with singer-songwriter, Malia Grace! She has some great music coming out on October 29th so be sure to check out her EP when it drops.

Can you tell us a bit about yourself? Where are you from? How did you get into music?

I’m a singer/songwriter based out of and raised in Austin, TX. My desire to pursue music started when I was extremely young, picking out popular songs and writing new ones on our family piano. I sang in choirs from elementary school through college, and started writing when I was twelve. I attended some “rock camps” at Austin School of Music, which were a blast and really solidified my love for the field. Then, I was very active in a high school band, winning local “Battle of the Bands” awards. After high school, UT recruited me for opera and I studied Music Business and Business Foundations there. Turns out, opera wasn’t my newest passion so instead of majoring in performance, I majored in music business and business foundations, all the while carving out time for songwriting almost daily. I graduated Phi Beta Kappa and thought hard about law school or an MBA, but my love affair with music won out. I decided to dedicate myself first and foremost to  songwriting after graduation. Now here I am: releasing my debut EP. It’s very exciting! Hard non-stop work, but a whole lot of fun, too.

When you were young, doctors thought you may have suffered some sort of hearing loss, how did that affect you?

You know, it’s funny. I was so little that I don’t remember much about it. I know my mom always tells stories about how I would put my tiny hand in her mouth as a baby (cute, I know), probably trying to find some sort of sound or vibration. My first memories all have to do with my love for music and singing. Knowing that I probably suffered from profound hearing loss until about two years old, I have always believed that my hearing was given back to me and I needed to make the most of it. Some people say they found music. I believe it found me.

Have you done any songwriting sessions for or with other artists?

I have not, but it is my dream to write for other artists! That was once my main goal. Now, I’m interested in performing my own music and touring, but writing for other people will always be something that really excites me.

Austin has a great music scene, what are some of your favorite venues to perform at or just go watch a show?

I love One2One Bar. Some really great people run it and it’s kind of a hidden spot in Austin (with great parking!). I also love The Highball—it has such a great energy and the bartenders are a blast. Other great venues I’ve had the good fortune to perform at include Stubb’s, Antone’s, The Ray Benson stage at the Austin airport, Saxon Pub and Annie’s at the airport, and for the Soul of a Musician series. Of course, I also love playing private parties and weddings where part of my setlist is my wedding song “The One.”

Do you have plans for some shows outside of the Austin area?

I do! In the next few weeks alone, I am playing at Postcrypt Coffeehouse in NYC on October 16th and at Arlene’s Grocery in NYC on October 17th for the Big Picture Media CMJ Showcase, plus a wedding reception in Pittsburgh.

What can we expect to see from you in the closing months of 2015?

Definitely the release of my full 7-song EP on October 29th! Plus gigs and holiday parties after that. The assist from the Jimmy Fallon’s Tonight Show for my single release last week (“Mama Didn’t Raise No Fool”) has generated amazing activity and we’re still sorting out those invitations. I’m hoping to start getting decent radio air time as well. When I get some time between gigs, I’m also hoping to get back in the studio with the next round of songs, including the wedding song, that already get a lot of requests at my gigs.  Lots of work, of course, but a joy to be doing it.

Thanks for your time, where can our readers find you online?

You can find me at all the following places and feel free to say hi! :