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MAYKA Is Breaking the Music Industry’s Glass Ceiling

MAYKA, who has recently debuted her new single “Rich,” is much more than just a singer and producer. Keeping heart, female empowerment and confidence at the forefront of her platform is one thing that distinguishes her as a rising solo artist.

Though Mayka Edd only started singing and writing about four years ago, she is no newcomer to the music industry. Prior to the release of her new single and making music as a member of the Swedish indie-pop group Death Team, she has had a great deal of experience as a DJ and producer in the music industry. She is breaking a lesser-known glass ceiling that has held up within said industry. Her experience as an artist and producer is not being questioned after seeing how she takes her experience and uses it as fuel to fire a new wave of female empowerment, self-care and authenticity in the music industry.

In our interview, I not only ask her about her new single, but what has shaped her and the path that has led her to this point in her life.

About your new single “Rich,” you said, “From the beginning, ‘Rich’ was about a relationship scenario – I pictured hanging with someone who’s just showing off, bragging and being fake. But lately, the song feels more like a message from my subconscious to myself — that I’m the one who should stop aiming for superficial goals like money and success.” Do you find that your music usually evolves and takes on new meanings for you?

Yeah, it’s very common. I never have a plan when I write music, I’ll just go with the flow and see what themes might pop up. Very often, it’s not until a year after that I understand what it was all about. And it’s probably something I experienced during that time but couldn’t comprehend whilst being in the middle of it.

I think we can get a deeper understanding of ourselves when we express our emotions in arts, crafts, music and so on. It’s like the perfect tools for our subconscious to use – And the results often get very intuitive and straightforward.

What inspires you to create and use your platform to inspire the next generation of artists and leaders?

I feel like we’re missing out on so much talent, so many beautiful songs, so many important stories. My dream is for all festival lineups, streaming services and top lists to be 50/50 and equal. We’re way behind, but I’m thrilled to see more and more girls starting to producing, writing and getting their voices out there.

You have a wide platform of DJing, producing, mixing and singing in the electronic music scene. How does your music influence the other aspects of your life?

It’s been everything the last decade. It’s almost a little bit scary, cause I’ve always let the music (and career) come first. That’s something I’m working on nowadays – to create balance and prioritize health, friends, family and all the other important things in life, too.

But I guess music (and creative expression of any kind, really) is essential for me as a human. When I don’t create, I feel awful, like my entire body and energy is stagnating. I become anxious and confused.

Music is my core and fuel, and when that’s flowing, usually all the other aspects of life are flourishing, as well.  

Your message to your listeners and audience is very clear: empower yourself, embrace individuality and be authentic. How much of that message is influenced by your personal experiences as a teenager/child?

I’m a super diplomatic middle child, and my entire life, I’ve adapted myself so that others can feel good. It’s just something I do — I don’t even notice it. Sometimes that’s great, but other times, it has the cost of my own wellbeing, beliefs and standards. Nowadays, I’m constantly practicing to speak up, to share my opinions and to be more true to myself. So the message is really for my shy Winnie The Pooh-loving, 11-year-old self to step up, be proud and speak my word. And if there are others who have the same issues as I do, I’m glad if I can help or be of any service.

Being a female in a male-dominated industry, what struggles, if any, have you faced? What advice would you give to young women embarking on a similar path?

I’ve come across lots of mansplaining and the feeling of being diminished. Especially in the DJ/producer area. It’s been hard, and I’ve really had to give myself a great deal of confidence and sometimes even a “fuck you, I’m doing this anyway” attitude.

Besides that, be curious, dare to try out new stuff and new ways of making music. I didn’t start singing and writing until like four years ago. And I’m so glad I did!

Join a community. Start collaborating. Get a team or a crew of people who holds your back. Always look for support and people with common interests. It will be so much easier, if you’re not alone.

Cover Image Courtesy of David Sullivan

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Written by Jorgie Ingram

Jorgie is a New England based artist, activist, writer, and dancer. She has a passion for helping others through her own artistry and creative work, aiming to inspire others to pursue their own passions, as well as spark conversation, ideas, connection, and community. When Jorgie isn't writing, she's diving into activist work with NH for Humanity, where she organizes art and performance-based fundraising events for organizations that need funding, such as Americans for the Arts and HAVEN NH. Jorgie also spends a great deal of time volunteering, dancing, teaching dance, performing, and choreographing - where she aims to bring personal and social issues to light.