'I won’t stop until my dreams are recognized': Musician Malynda Hale on being tenacious and persistent
Apart from being a skilled musician, Hale has also dabbled in acting and activism. Her upcoming EP comes out on June 22
Born and raised in Santa Barbara, California, Malynda Hale started singing at the tender age of five. By the age of seven, she was learning how to play the piano and at just nine, she started penning down her own songs. Years later, Hale is a successful musician today with her new EP just about to release on June 22. Yet that isn't all.
Apart from music, Hale has also participated vehemently in social activism. Her passion for social justice has led her to release music inspired by the LGBTQ activism and the Black Lives Matter movement, with a track on her upcoming EP titled “We Run” specifically written about the latter. Hale has also been vocal about her beliefs in veganism, thus touching the lives of many.
Hale also has a music video releasing June 15, and an extensive tour lined up too. But her successful music scene isn't the only thing she has dabbled in. She has proven her skills in acting and entrepreneurship, and with a multitude of prospects lined ahead of her, Hale spills what it takes to make a groundbreaking difference in contemporary society via her art.
Here are some excerpts of her conversation with Meaww:
You started writing songs at the tender age of nine. What were your inspirations then?
Growing up, I was always exposed to music. I started out singing in church and my dad was a former musician. Music is simply something that’s always been a part of my life. I remember hearing Whitney Houston sing the national anthem when I was 5 years old, and that moment I knew that’s what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. I started taking piano lessons at the age of 7 and a couple years later I started writing songs. I didn’t have much to say as a nine-year-old, so a lot of my songwriting inspiration came from trying to emulate artists I listened to at the time.
What would you call your biggest inspiration behind most of your music up till now?
My inspirations varied as I grew up and started to figure out who I was as an artist. I was always inspired to write about a crush I had, a past relationship or something I saw. I was always inspired by other artists I admired like Gavin DeGraw, Sara Bareilles, Indie Arie, etc. But currently, my inspirations are really drawn from my life experiences and the people in my life. That has allowed me to be more vulnerable in my music and songwriting and connecting with my audience more.
Could you tell us a little about your upcoming EP? The inspiration or a set theme that you might have carried throughout its length?
I couldn’t be more proud of this EP. I’ve released EPs and full-length albums in the past, but there’s just something about this one that I feel was a huge breakthrough for me. That’s one of the reasons it’s titled The One. Those two words are sprinkled throughout the lyrics in the EP if you really listen. I remember when Komica Purnell, the producer and co-writer for the title track, came over and we were trying to figure out what songs to write together. And she happened to pull up a track that she made a while back that wasn’t intended for anyone specifically and I started humming a melody and riffing over it and l said to her, 'This is the one'. It was really an incredible moment that gave me so much happiness because I knew I’d found the sound I was looking for. As fate would have it, it was the last song added to the EP. So as I looked back at the other songs throughout the EP, I realized I had used those two words in some way, shape or form and it all fell into place.
Who would you call your biggest strength and support on your journey to where you are today?
The obvious answers are my husband, my family and the friends who are really ride-or-die for my career. But to be honest, I’d say that I’m my biggest strength and support on my journey because if I didn’t believe in myself or push myself I wouldn’t have any success. I’m very blessed that God created me to be such a tenacious and persistent person because I won’t stop until my dreams are recognized. Even if I’m the only person in my corner.
If Malynda Hale wasn't a musician, what alternate profession would she have been in?
There’s truly nothing else I’d be. I don’t believe in alternate professions! For me, it’s always been one thing and one thing only. I dabble in other things because I like keeping myself busy, but I’m blessed that I get to sing for a living.
You're soon to be on an extensive tour; what do you find to be the most thrilling aspect of it?
Traveling the world is so exciting to me, meeting new people and being in different environments. I’m NOT excited about the hunt for vegan food because sometimes it is a STRUGGLE. But it’s a small price to pay for having incredible new life experiences in different areas of the world.
What is managing and owning an entertainment company like? How do you balance that with your music career?
When my husband and I decided to create our company, the goal was to create opportunities for the incredible people in our lives and also have an additional source of income. We weren’t sure how successful we’d be but I’m so happy with how much everything has grown.
Apart from the tour, any upcoming projects you're excited about?
I always have a new project I’m working on! Currently, I host a songwriter night in Pasadena, California called Last Friday’s Songwriter Night that provides a platform for emerging songwriters and indie artists. It’s the last Friday of every month at Lyd and Mo’s photography studio in Pasadena. And I’m also one-third of a podcast titled Boss, Please!, which focuses on uplifting interviews of women being bosses in all sorts of ways in their lives.
You have acted in theatre productions and even TV & films; do you want to do more acting in the future?
Absolutely! I truly love being in front of the camera, making a character come to life and doing scenes with people. I also love being in commercials. The entire film and television world is really beautiful because it incorporates so many different aspects of the arts and many different talents in order to create the final product.
You have also taken part in activism; How has that impacted your art?
My activism is a huge part of my brand and my music. I believe that because music is such a universal language we are able to convey certain messages through the beauty of music to help aide different perspectives, especially when it comes to social justice. One of the songs on my EP is written specifically for the Black Lives Matter movement. I thought it was not only important to write about my personal experience of being a black woman in America but to try and explain the experiences of other black people in America. When you use a thing like music to convey your message the response can be incredibly powerful.