Madison McFerrin

FRESH: ‘Try’ – Madison McFerrin

Madison McFerrin returns with “Try”.

by Christopher Smith

Madison McFerrin – yes, Bobby “Don’t Worry Be Happy” McFerrin’s daughter – is an independent singer-songwriter based in Brooklyn, NY. In December of 2016, she quietly introduced her soulful take on a cappella to the world when she self-released her debut EP “Finding Foundations: Vol. I”. After one listen, tastemaking DJ, Gilles Peterson, snatched up her standout track, “No Time to Lose,” for his Brownswood Bubblers compilation.

Leading up to her sold out debut show at Joe’s Pub, the New York Times remarked how her sound “shows wonderful vocal dexterity, deftly swerving from sharp, clearly enunciated staccato bursts to fluttery, free-form melismata”. In February of 2018, she gave her listeners more of her distinctive sound that Questlove dubbed “soul-appella” when she self-released “Finding Foundations: Vol. II”. Her SXSW 2018 debut led legendary KCRW DJ Anne Litt to remark, “there’s some sort of joy and beauty in the way that she performs that really drew me in all that much more”.

Pitchfork Magazine followed this up by declaring, “Madison McFerrin is making a cappella cool again” in a Rising Artist profile. She subsequently performed at Pitchfork’s Rising Artist showcase at Northside Fest, OctFest, Paris Avant Garde showcase and inaugural Midwinter Event at the Art Institute of Chicago. Beyond the stage, Madison’s one-of-a-kind vocals can be heard in episodes of Broad City and Random Acts of Flyness. This year, Madison plans to build upon this momentum by pairing her timeless voice with modern production on her new project “You + I”.

Her new single “Try”, the first from the forthcoming EP, deals with the backlash from her performance of the national anthem at Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign rally. The video, directed by Madison herself, uses Twitter abuse comments that she was subjected to as well as a video of Snoop Dogg’s disparaging comments about her that were streamed online at the time. “Try” is about rising up and moving on as well as acknowledging those who took to social media and confronting her critics. “You + I” is due out in November.

Stay in touch with Madison through her WEBSITE and her FACEBOOK page

Don’t forget to follow all the songs featured on our FRESH music feature. Enjoy!

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Written by Christopher Smith

So perhaps you’ve read an article or two that I’ve written and wondered “just who is this character?”! Well I thought maybe it would be time to introduce myself and what I’m all about. Well it’s all about the music! Having been born in the late 1970’s I was heavily influenced by my parent’s love of ‘popular’ music and rock and roll of the 1950’s and 60’s. My Mother always said she should of married Elvis and my father was, and is still, in love with Sandie Shaw! But while my Dad’s tastes stopped in about 1967, my Mum carried on loving music throughout the 70’s, 80’s and beyond. My first memory was playing on the floor whilst my Mother was ironing one day with the radio on, and hearing ABBA’s “Super Trouper” dancing my nappy off to it! Maybe that’s where it all went wrong…?! Having been subjected to all and sundry in my infant years, I finally found my feet in the mid-1980’s and began ‘partying’ to the likes of Culture Club, Stevie Wonder(!), Elkie Brooks and Bananarama to name but a few! The year 1987 would have a profound effect on my listening tastes and from thereon in my life would be dominated with buying and listening to music. Any number of outstanding songs were released and listened to that year, most notably “Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now”, “I Wanna Dance With Somebody” and “La Isla Bonita”. That Summer my mind was completely taken over with music and sounds I’d never heard before and I was totally taken in by it all. My father would say “whaaar rubbish you got on naaaaao?” (I’m from Norfolk!) but I was hooked. And it continued so for the rest of the decade and the next. At the beginning of 1988 I ‘met’ my true love and the singer I’ve worshipped more than any other artist or group. You may know of her. She’s from Australia…! Aside from pop music, my tastes are many and varied and continues to grow and expand as I ‘mature’ in age. I’ve always been heavily interested in films and in particular the mechanics of film making and of course film music, so scores and subsequently orchestral music takes up a lot of my tastes and collection. 90’s dance and club tunes also takes up much of the space in my head and I’m surprised my brain has stopped shaking from the years of abuse it took being dragged to nightclubs, often three times a week in my 20’s! I find with each year that passes I regress back to my youth and of course the 1980’s. 80’s music dominates and the lust to see as many 80’s acts and singers play live now is insatiable. I’m still getting into the groove as much as every breath I take, but I’m never gonna give up listening to my heart and pumping up the volume, simply because I LOVE MUSIC…any kind of music!
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