At the beginning of last year, Heather Mae was among the ranks of broke, twenty-something artists living in New York walk-ups. In desperation, she resolved to write a song a day for one whole year. On the other side of that year, she is hardly the same person.
“Everything that I am right now came out of it,” she maintains. “I truly believe everything happens for reason, and it may be the sappiest thing, but this year without a doubt has led me to this point. I learned how to believe in myself and I learned that it doesn’t matter what circumstance I’m in, whether I’m going through a breakup or I just got kicked out of my house or had a death in the family, or if I’m just having a bad day. It doesn’t matter where I am, creativity is always there, so I learned how to harness it and brew it.”
Not only did she take control of her creativity, Heather Mae emerged from her year of songs with a plethora of personal and professional accomplishments and lessons for the road, including her first studio album and mastery of the crow position in yoga.
“Sometimes it takes having to focus solely on your craft and not on yourself to learn about yourself,” she explains. “As long as you have your craft to fall upon, nothing will ever be wrong no matter where you are. It was a hard lesson to learn because there were times when I just wanted to stop.”
Thankfully for everyone involved, Heather Mae didn’t stop, and 7,000 lines, 100 plus collaborators and 30 states later, she has her top 10 songs on an album (One Year of Songs) and a massive new fan base to show for it. She’s also traded in her nanny badge for her new role as a songwriter’s assistant at a nonprofit organization. But she won’t stop there.
“I’m really looking forward to taking what I’ve learned from one year of songs about harnessing and brewing creativity and actually doing it with brand new material and not having to write a song in a day, being able to work on it for a couple of weeks and not a couple of hours or a couple of days.”
Despite everything she’s gained from this experience, Heather Mae still maintains that she makes music for her fans, not for herself.
“It’s your art, it’s your craft. It’s not about me,” she explains. “I truly believe that music, being a singer-songwriter, is a service industry. It’s not about me at all. There is something that has given me this gift, and people will listen to it and it will make them feel better.”
In this case, Heather Mae is dead on. Her 10-track record from the last year is nothing short of therapy in a pretty disguise. 100% painful, 100% enlightening and 100% worth checking out.