L+T: You’ve said previously that each song you covered is connected to a memory or experience from your life. What’s the memory that you connect with André 3000’s “Take Off Your Cool”?
MH: When his album, The Love Below, came out, I just fell in love. I thought it was so fantastic how he took all these different songs with all these different levels to them and put them together on the same project. I was in high school at the time and I remember my mom picked me up from school and I made her take me to the nearest record store so I could buy it. I would listen to the song constantly and write poetry.
L+T: You seem to really emphasize the experience of music. How do you like to experience music?
MH: I think different settings can give you a different experience of a song. There’s a song for every setting. I really like listening to music in the car. I really like listening to music walking outside. I wake up in the morning and I put on music while I get dressed. When I write, it’s to music. Whenever I’m doing something creative, there’s music playing in the background. I just love listening to music at all times of the day.
L+T: Your sound and demeanor are both sultry and relaxed, but there must be that one song that makes you lose it. If I saw you at a club, what song would you be geekin’ out to on the dance floor?
MH: Prince! He just makes me lose my mind. I just want to dance to Prince.
L+T: What’s one song that didn’t make the cut for From Her Eyes? What was song #8?
MH: Al Green’s “Simply Beautiful.”
L+T: Bay area kids are known to rep pretty hard, how do you rep the Bay?
MH: I rep the Bay through everything I do. I was raised in Oakland my entire life and I love being from here. I would never create a conflict if someone had an issue with the fact that I’m from Oakland, but I’m proud. I’ve never lived anywhere but here.
L+T: What do you want to do? Where do you want to take this?
MH: I want to take it everywhere possible. Music is my life, my love and my inspiration. It’s my air. It’s everything I want to do. I want to take it around the world.Mara Hruby
Photography by Fred Shavies.
Click here to download Mara Hruby’s EP.