MTM EP 2 - Maylee Todd and Her Virtual Womb
AIR DATE: APRIL 16th, 2018
On the 2nd episode of Mind To Make, I sit down with the delightful Maylee Todd. We talk about her latest record Acts of Love and the process she went through to make it. We explore ideas around going it alone vs. with a group or team, releasing on labels vs. self-releasing and discuss Maylee's Virtual Womb show and how she's made her audience part of her performances. All that, and lots more fun stuff!
Her latest video for the single Afanyala can be seen here.
Co-director Todd Yurichuk says of the video "Afanyala' is about honouring your unique sensibilities... Ultimately there's no one person like another and everyone's unique nature and lived experience gives a wealth of knowledge that can bring different perspectives and creative expressions to humanity."
Maylee incorporated the creative experience of others in the new video, collaborating with projection artist Lightsweetcrude and wearable art-maker Xue Liang. The video was co-directed by Todd and Fred Yurichuk, and you can take it all in below.
GET A WORKSHOP FROM MAYLEE
Maylee will be teaching the fundamentals of Ableton from recording to advanced techniques for creativity, and live performance. Click the link below to access more information...
Polymath. Free thinker. Psychonaut. Jill-of-all-trades. Renaissance womyn. Toronto-based multi-disciplinary artist, vocalist and producer Maylee Todd has been called many things. But the one thing her artistic and musical output has been consistently called is stimulating.
The source of her prolific artistic tendencies may lie in her bi-cultural lineage which points to a Canadian father who is an Elvis Presley impersonator, and her Filipino mom who for years crafted quirky interactive quilts and dolls. Regardless, Maylee became best known in Canada, the UK (where she receives airplay and praises from BBC Radio 1’s Gilles Peterson) and Asia (where she was a Top 10 charting artist in Tokyo) for her past solo albums, Choose Your Own Adventure (2010) and Escapology (2013), dual works of art that incorporated elements of dance-friendly funk, electronic, soul, disco and experimental sounds, while utilizing both digital and analog recording methods.
For her third studio album Acts of Love, which she calls “a body of work that is much more about music for me”, Maylee’s playlist of songs can be viewed more as MANTRAS inspired by her psychonautic lyrical approach, and her interest in science fiction, human psychology, and unconventional thinking. Maylee convincingly covers a wide range of timely, topical and universal subject matter on her new 17 track album including gender bias (“From This Moment”), addiction (“One of These Days”), solitude (“Lonely”), coming to a mutual understanding (“Eye To Eye”), unconventional relationships (“Goat Wut U Need”) and virtual reality/psilocibin (“Virtual Life”).
Given that Maylee’s creativity takes direct inspiration from her working in a wide range of artistic disciplines; song-writing, film, performance art, comedy, 3-D projection mapping and design, it should come as no surprise that she added album “producer” to her repertoire, having produced all 17 of the songs on the album. In fact, Acts of Love is characterized by an “in-the-box” studio approach that sees Maylee wholly embracing technology and taking on the role of producer, arranger, and multi-instrumentalist, recording and playing the bulk of the music in her home studio.
Virtual Womb is a multimedia show that includes 3-D projection mapping, dancing, installation, interactive therapy and music. The audience byob (brings their own blanket), walks through a large vulva installation, lie on the floor and watches projections on the ceiling that coincide with the live musical performance containing harp and electronics. The audience participates in a collection of collective consciousness, where they can participate in writing down their forms of therapy, their Acts Of Love. These Acts Of Love live online for worldwide access.
Maylee’s music unfurls some multi-disciplinary art appendages and has the capacity to inject humour and a true sense of performance art into her music. Her shows are more than just concerts, they are creative experiences, and her much talked about prowess in this area has led to her sharing stages with Janelle Monae, Little Dragon, Thundercat, Lee Fields, Aloe Blacc, Esthero, Ebony Bones, and The Budos Band, among others.
Acts of Love is essentially a tale of one woman’s metamorphosis, of constantly mutating and evolving musically, with the ultimate goal being to enlighten listeners on the symbiotic relationship between music, technology, performance art and human nature. It's a conceptual record that focuses on topics such as polyamory, gender bias, addiction, forgiveness, and the illusions/constructs of life.