“That’s my Jam” continues to explore emerging artists from around North America. We’re excited to have our programs first Solo artist with deep roots in classic American. It’s an album that draws on intimate and universal themes that is sure to attract new fans from all over.
Play the first single off Matt Hectorne’s debut full-length album.
Matt is a Memphis, Tennessee-born, Northwest Mississippi-raised singer-songwriter. His love for classic American songwriting is in the vein of Tom Petty, Bobby Charles, and John Prine. With modern flourishes of indie rock and Americana, Matt Hectorne released his first lo-fi recordings with 2012’s Your Light My Dar.k Hectorne’s smooth Mid-South drawl sails over songs that pay tribute to his heroes while still finding a refreshing place in today’s musical landscape.
Matt is set to release his upcoming debut LP Days While Away. We caught up with Matt and learned about his writing process and some of the challenges that occurred while recording the album.
[MyLifeInStyle] Hi Matt thanks for taking the time to answers some of our questions. Let us start by learning a little about your roots. How did you fall in love with playing music?
[Matt] I guess I started playing music around 10 or 11. Before that, I wanted to be a novelist. I loved reading, storytelling, and the creative puzzle of putting together a good, cohesive idea. So music was an easy way to funnel what I loved about writing into an even more concise and personal way. I started writing songs before I knew how to play an instrument. I would write full songs with verses, choruses, and bridges, sing them a capella, and time them to make sure they were the right length. Writing music has always been, first and foremost, for me. It’s catharsis it’s how I get out whatever fears or insecurities I have. Cheap therapy, I guess. And then performing them live is even another level where you can share these deep fears and find that you aren’t alone in those thoughts. It takes me out of my head and connects me with the rest of the world.
[MyLifeInStyle] Your new album is about to be available to the world. Talk to me about the process of creating this album. What new challenges did you face this time around in the recording process?
[Matt] I’ve always for, better or worse, been pretty prolific. The problem comes when I write something and just want to get it recorded before it’s ready. We actually recorded a whole record last summer. 11 songs in 2 weeks. But after listening back to it, everything just wasn’t lived in enough yet. So I scrapped the record, waited a few months, and we started over in January of this year. Only 3 of those songs that were recorded last year made it on the record. The rest were either new songs written during the break, or re-recorded and rearranged some of the older ones. Learning to be more deliberate and thoughtful in the recording was hard for me because I love to just knock it out and move on to the next thing. But as much work as it was, I’m happy to have not settled and done what I thought was best, because I’m really proud of how this record came out.
[MyLifeInStyle] So your album is in place, now you have to let the world know. You have a very concise message over all your social sites and web page. It’s a beautifully designed look. Is using the internet something essential to your endeavors?
[Matt] That’s very nice of you to say. I really just try to keep everything very singular. It keeps a concise image and look so everyone is getting the same thing anywhere they find you. With that being said, I actually kind of hate having to do social media (haha). I don’t hate social media itself; I’m just not really big on promoting and selling myself to people. It definitely does not come to me naturally. It’s just a necessary part of making a living with music nowadays. I try to have a mix between just showing fans what my life (or some version of it) looks like, while also making sure people are aware of what I’m up to whether it be recording, touring, or new merch sales. People don’t want just to be advertised to on their Instagram, but being an independent artist, if I don’t do it for myself no one will. So I think the most important thing is to find that balance between being their friend and having to be a business.
[MyLifeInStyle] Touring! you are hitting the road soon. Tell us about this tour. Have you booked any venues that you are dying to play in?
[Matt] Since this project is just me, I tour solo a lot. Mostly because it makes the most fiscal sense. I love touring with a band though. It’s a very different vibe during the day. I like solitude, but having other people to experience life (and tours) with is a beautiful thing. And there’s something to be said about sharing a good show (or a bad one for that matter) with other people. So I wanted to do a small run with a full band so people could get an idea of what the new record sounds like live. We’re doing some Southeastern and Midwest dates before I drop the band off and continue on tour solo. There are several cities I excited to visit and play again. The tour starts in Nashville, and that’s always fun to play because it feels like you’re playing a party for all of your friends. Which is kind of the case (ha). I’m excited to go back to Athens, GA. It’s such a beautiful town, and the people are so receptive to music there. I love playing Rock Island, IL. Rozz-Tox (the venue there) is one of my favorite places to play, hands down. Also I’ll be back in Charlottesville, VA in October, and I can’t say enough good things about that place.
Thanks again to Matt for taking the time to speak with us. Please make sure to follow everything Matt is up to and get out and go see him live in your town. As always stay clicked to My Life In Style to keep discovering new amazing artist from all over North America. Do not hesitate to check out Matt website and be sure to follow him never to miss out on anything he is up to.
Matt Hectorne Website