Mack 13-11-23-5 (1)

BN1 chats with MACKENZY MACKAY ahead of The Great Escape

⁠What inspired you to pursue a career in music and how did you get started?

I’ve always had a love for writing songs. Always wanted this to be my full time job, I think inspirations came from multiple directions from working in jobs I hated to various different life situations I found myself in, it really just pushed me into giving everything I had to music. Started off on socials by sharing snippets of my life through the songs I was writing and then it’s all just sort of grown from there really.

Can you share a memorable experience from a previous live performance that has stayed with you?

Scala show in King’s Cross, I played Venus on piano and I had about 800 people singing the words I’ve written. That was so lovely and I’m sure there’s many more moments like that to come.

How does the music scene in Brighton influence your creativity and style?

Unfortunately, I haven’t been there enough to comment but it’s inspired me enough to come and perform, as I am at this year’s The Great Escape fest.

What message or emotions do you aim to convey through your music to your audience?

I write a lot of love songs. Just want everyone to know that they can love, be loved, and no one’s alone in any of this, we’re all human and we don’t need permission to feel the way we do. Happy, sad, in love or heartbroken.. whatever the feeling is, we’ve all been there and anyone’s welcome to listen to my music if it helps them feel these. 

Who are some of your musical influences and how have they shaped your sound?

up on a mixture of 90’s hip hop, BigL, Gangsta, Shyheim, murs, Tupac, Big etc and alt rock like Red Hot chili Peppers, Goo Goo Dolls, Arctic Monkeys. To some older ones like Ella Fitzgerald, Louis Armstrong, Everly Brothers. And in more recent years have been listening to post Malone, Noah Kahan, The Kid LAROI and more. I think I draw inspiration from all of them and I’m not entirely sure how or what parts of my music comes from them but I feel like they definitely all have something to do with what comes out when I create a song. 

⁠How has your music evolved since you first started creating and performing?

So much. I remember over 10 years ago putting my first video on YouTube.. I found it again a few years ago and I just thought it was horrendous. But it was lovely to notice the progression of improvement throughout the years. My writing is better, my vocals are better, my guitar playing is still pretty basic if I’m honest I could deffo do with practising the guitar and piano more.

What do you hope the audience takes away from your performance? 

I just wanted everyone to feel the love tbh, the rooms are always so warm and lovely, not temperature wise but just the vibe. Everyone’s friends and if I can connect with these people that listen to my music, I hope they’ll want to connect again and again and really help me build something special. I want them to feel how they make me feel after a show. Filled with love and excited to do it again 

How do you stay motivated and inspired to create music, especially during challenging times?

Get out, in nature, take a break, don’t force it too much I guess 

If you could collaborate with any musician, living or deceased, who would it be and why? 

I feel like my mind is always changing with this one cus it’s super hard to pick one.. I think I’ll go with SZA this time, she’s so sick her voice, Melodie’s and lyrics are always wicked and I think we could make something pretty cool together 

Lastly, what advice would you give to aspiring artists looking to break into the music industry?

Don’t quit trying. 


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