Malynda Hale

Los Angeles-based multi-award-winning singer-songwriter Malynda Hale exhibits all of the qualities of a true embodiment of talent and creativity.

Classically-trained in both vocal performance and musical theater, this stunning performer has secured her place in the Recording Academy, as well as having experienced praise from such sources as Urban Flux and Music Connection Magazines.

Malynda Hale

Hale has just released her fourth studio album, Pieces of Me, which showcases her talents while still portraying her passionate message of love and equality.

This artist is definitely one to watch as she continues to drop jaws around the world.

By Rochelle Dulaney

Firstly, please tell us a bit about yourself.

I’m 29 years old and originally from Santa Barbara, but currently I live in Los Angeles. I went to college at Azusa Pacific University, where I got a degree in Vocal Performance (opera) and a minor in musical theatre. Music and performing have always been my biggest passion.

I feel like it’s the one way I know I can make a difference and impact in the world.

What first caused you to realize that you desired a career in music?

My family was always very into music, especially my dad. He exposed me to so many great musicians growing up and I would always put on shows in the living room, lip-syncing to Whitney, Mariah, Natalie Cole–you name it!

I started singing in church as well when I was five, and from then on, I knew being a singer was what I wanted to do. I did theatre throughout school also.

There’s never been anything else I’ve ever wanted to do. It’s always been music and performing. Always.

How would you describe your style of music and your target audience?

I definitely think my music is positive and relatable. I dabble in several genres, but I would say pop/R&B/singer-songwriter? It’s hard to say! I have a variety of influences. I just love making music and sometimes certain songs lend themselves to certain styles.

Because of that aspect of my music, I think I am able to reach a wide audience, anywhere from young kids to older generations. And that’s the great thing about music in general: it has the power to reach a wide demographic.

I’d like to think my main demographic is 21-36, but I have fans of all ages from all over the world. It’s wonderful.

Who were some of your musical influences growing up?

How do those differ from your influences today? Growing up I listened to all the greats, including Stevie Wonder, Whitney Houston, Natalie Cole and Sam Cooke.

I was really influenced by ’90’s Pop and R&B as well. I still get stuck listening to the ’90’s era because it’s nostalgic for me, but my main influence currently is Gavin DeGraw.

Anyone who knows me knows this. Even if you don’t know me, you probably know this. He’s such a huge influence on me musically. I would absolutely love to work with him.

You have recently released your fourth studio album, Pieces of Me. Tell us about this album. What do you think makes it stand out from previous albums you have released?

This album is really special to me. It shows a lot of growth on my part as a singer-songwriter and as an individual as a whole. A lot of the songs I wrote on this album were very personal for me. Even though all my songs are personal, this album had a very different kind of depth.

I think each album I’ve done has been better than the last, and I think that’s always the direction you want to go.

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What inspired the album overall?

The album is called Pieces of Me because each song really is a part of me, and you’re getting a glimpse into the type of person I am. Whether I’m singing about the music industry, my fears, my observations or just wanting to have fun, each song represents something I’ve gone through and something I believe in.

Connecting with people who listen to my music is so important to me. I don’t want someone to merely put my record on and have it play in the background; I want them to truly listen to what I’m saying and to relate and feel connected to me.

The songs on this album were inspired by many situations, but simply put, it was inspired by my life and growth as an artist.

What is your favorite song on the project, and why?

There are two actually. “Falling” is one of my favorites because it’s so heartfelt and it was written as a response to the tragic death of Leelah Alcorn, a transgender teen who unfortunately passed away. I’ve always been a huge advocate for the LGBT community.

Even though that’s what the song was originally written about, it’s really a song of strength and understanding. The lyrics tell a story and they also make people think. In writing the song I wanted people to really be open minded to the pain of other people. Everyone is fighting a silent battle.

The other song that is really special to me is the title track of the album, “Pieces of Me.” I wrote this song when my husband and I were moving back to LA from Chicago and I was scared.

Even though Southern California is my home, I had built an entire life and community in Chicago and I had no idea what was next. That’s what the song is about and I know people can relate to having to adjust to new situations and being afraid of the unknown.

You have received many awards for your music, including the ASCAP PLUS Award for Independent Artists and the Top Singer-Songwriter Award in the First Annual Independent Artist Network Music Arts Awards. What do you feel has been your biggest accomplishment over the course of your career?

Truly, I think the fact that I’m able to do this for a living is my biggest accomplishment. I made a vow to myself to not work a regular 9-5 job and I’ve kept that promise, even though sometimes it’s really difficult.

I’m definitely not where I want to be; I have so much more I need and want to accomplish on a grand scale, but I can’t deny how blessed I am.

If I had to pick something, it would be singing the national anthem at the Stub Hub Center for the LA Galaxy. 27,000 people has been my biggest audience and I’m so grateful for that experience.

At which venues have you performed? What have been your favorite and least favorite venues, and why?

There are so many! But I think Elbo Room in Chicago has been one of my favorites. It’s small and intimate, the audience listens and regularly comes for great music, and it’s great to perform to people that are actually there to HEAR music. I also love Rockwood Music Hall in New York.

In addition to being a singer-songwriter, you are also an actress, entrepreneur, and activist. You seem to be very diverse in your areas of work; please tell us about those.

I hate to be bored and have to stay busy, and I also want to make the biggest impact I possibly can in the world. I participate in things I’m passionate about. I love acting and grew up doing musical theatre, so it was a natural transition to go into commercials and films.

Being an entrepreneur was also pretty natural to me. I’ve always been a go-getter and have created opportunities for others, so I figured why not start my own entertainment company and indie label? The indie label is still being developed but the entertainment company has been running successfully for almost a year now, and I’m so happy with the progress we’ve made.

As far as being an activist, I’m just really passionate about everything from race relationships to equality, animal rights, and child hunger. The list goes on.

It’s physically impossible for me to actively be involved in every movement, but I believe in and support so many and I want to use whatever platform I am in to be able to share my voice.

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What has been the most exciting moment in your career so far?

Meeting Gavin Degraw at the Grammys. No joke. It was brief, but nothing will be that. Well, that’s not completely true because once I sing with him I can die happy.

If you could collaborate with any artist or producer, who would it be?

Besides the obvious, I think someone I would really love to work with is Sara Bareilles. She’s so talented and I think I connect with her music and personality a lot. I love how she functions as well, and I think the pairing would be great.

Was it a difficult process getting your music onto streaming services like Pandora, Spotify, and Apple Music?

Not at all! My label has a distribution deal, so getting my music on various platforms isn’t difficult. What would you like to say to your fans? Honestly, just thank you! Thank you for believing in me, sticking by me, walking with me on this journey and never giving up on me.

Sometimes I fear that people who have been following me for a long time will give up or move on but I’m so grateful for the amount of support I continuously receive. It’s humbling.

What advice would you give to any aspiring artist trying to be noticed?

Don’t give up and don’t be afraid to ask for help. Pride isn’t always a good thing. Always be open to learning and always be ready to hear “no.” It happens to all of us, but it’s what you do with that “no” that can shape the rest of your life and career.

I read something the other day that said “NO” stands for “Next Opportunity” and I absolutely love that.

What are your plans since the release of your fourth album? Are you working on any new projects or planning to tour?

My plan is to prep for the next album. [Laughs] But in all honesty, I did a mini tour last year to promote the album and now I’m planning to do another tour consisting mostly of house concerts. I’ve discovered how amazing the house concert model is, and I’m excited to tour that way.

I’m also always writing and working on new things, whether it’s acting or music—-like I said, I can’t sit still for very long.

Connect with Malynda Hale

twitter.com/malyndahale

facebook.com/malyndahalemusic

Credits: Photography by Lisa Konczal

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