Meet the singer-songwriter, Brigitte Mena! The Texas-native recently released a brand new single entitled “Maniac.” The track is based on the Netlix show “Maniac” that was released last September, and is inspired by Emma Stone’s character, Annie Landsberg (suffering from Borderline PD) who takes a series of pills in a pharmaceutical trial that is supposed to “cure” her struggles/disorder. There are many references to “machines” including various sound effects throughout the song as a way of recreating her experience of the trials.
Brigitte Mena was born to be a storyteller, and her vehicle is music. The singer-songwriter’s heartrending tunes tell harrowing tales enveloped in atmospheric, ambient melodies. But the artist has her sights set on much more than producing pop rock tracks. Armed with her versatile voice, a pen and a penchant for crafting compelling songs, Mena strives to strike a chord with audiences and tell relevant, resonant stories.
Mena started crafting original music in high school, and founded her first rock band as a freshman at Southern Methodist University, where she studied Music and Psychology. Mena’s music studies helped her hone her craft, while her work in psychology gave her an avenue to explore her interest in human behavior. Instead of choosing one passion over the other, the artist decided to merge the two roads ahead of her. By using her talents as a musician, Mena shines a light on topics like behavior, mental health, relationships and identity.
Learn more Brigitte Mena in the following All Access interview-
Thank you for your time! So what does a typical day look like for you lately?
Of course! Thanks for taking the time to chat with me! I always begin my day with a good cup of coffee and usually plan out my to-do list for the day. I can easily get overwhelmed with everything I have to accomplish, so this simple routine of making a daily task list really helps me. Lately I’ve been in the studio finishing up my next record so a lot of my days are filled with recording and mixing sessions.
Now that we are in the latter half of the year, how has 2019 treated you? What are some goals that you have had for yourself this year? How close are you to reaching them or did you already? What are you already looking forward to in 2020?
This year has been pretty amazing. I released three singles this year and I’m almost finished recording my second album! One of my goals I set at the end of last year was to write a full length record, so it’s been exciting seeing it all come together. I’m looking forward to the release next year – hopefully next Spring or Summer! Keep an eye out!
Growing up, how important was music in your life? Can you recall the moment when you decided that you wanted to be a musician? Was it an easy or difficult choice to make?
Music has always been my saving grace. When I think back on my most difficult times, it’s music that has literally saved me. Although I’ve always loved music, it was about two years ago where I finally realized that I wanted to make a career as a musician. I left my job to officially pursue it full time.
Was there ever a time when you thought about doing something else? If you weren’t a musician today, what else could you see yourself doing? Would you be as fulfilled in life?
Definitely. I changed my major like 4 times throughout college, but I ended up finishing my music degree. As much as I wanted to be a musician, the whole “making it work” part always scared me. I had to learn how to become comfortable with the unknown and even more comfortable with the amount of work it takes to be successful. If I wasn’t doing music, I’m pretty sure I would be a teacher. After college, I worked a few different teaching jobs, and although I loved teaching, I knew that music was my true passion, and how unhappy I would be if I didn’t just “go for it.”
What has been the biggest surprise so far about making music your career? What has been an unexpected or welcome challenge to it all? What has been the best part about it all?
Honestly, how I’ve never once regretted just “going for it.” There were a lot of times right before I quit my job where I was thinking – okay, this is just for a few months or something, so you better enjoy it! But the everyday challenge of fighting for something you believe in has been so rewarding. There are days where the grind is overwhelming, but I love every second of it. For me – It’s like planting a seed and watching it grow into something beautiful. You have to provide that seed with its nutrients, love, attention, and PATIENCE. Making a career out of music is just like that for me.
What was the inspiration for your newest track, “Maniac”? What was it like having it be based on the Netflix show also called Maniac?
“Maniac” is inspired by Emma Stone’s character, “Annie.” It’s basically a song about her experience throughout the show and the challenges she faces. The show definitely brought the song to life. A lot of my songs are written from a psychological perspective, but this song was more influenced by her character.
How would you say that “Maniac” compares to anything else that you have released?
I think content-wise it’s probably the most different compared to other songs I’ve released. I’ve never written a song based on a show, so it was definitely a different experience for me.
Do you have plans to release more new music soon and a full of collection of new songs?
YES! Be on the lookout for a new album from me next year!
How would you say that your newest music compares to anything else that you have released in the past?
I think the biggest difference between my last record and the record I am currently recording is the content. “Maslow,” the album I released last year, was a collection of songs primarily based on a really difficult breakup I went through. It was also a concept album – based on Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. My newest material is still personal, but encompasses various experiences both myself and others close to me have had throughout a year’s timespan.
How do you think you have grown as a musician since you first started making music? What, if anything, has stayed the same about your music-making process?
I think my biggest area of growth has been finding inspiration out of literally anything. When I first started writing, I could only create when I was extremely sad or unhappy. But now, I feel like I’m able to look outside of those “darker” experiences a bit, and find inspiration elsewhere. That’s kind of how “Maniac” was formed – looking for inspiration outside of my personal experiences. Of course, I think we can all agree that some of the best writing comes out from painful times. What has stayed consistent for me is that most of my songs start off with an acoustic/singer-songwriter feel.
How do you feel about social media? What do you think social media has done for your career?
Eh – I have a love/hate relationship with it. While I think it’s a great way to get your name out there, I also think it’s A LOT to keep up with. I feel like you’re expected to constantly be posting about what’s going on in your life and keep up with various content. I will say that it’s helped me share my music with people who would have never heard it!
What musicians would you absolutely still love to work with in the future?
Anthony Green or Billie Eilish for sure. Also Phoebe Bridgers or LIGHTS would be super cool.
If you could design your dream music video right now, what would it look like?
I have something in mind for a song off my forthcoming album, so I don’t want to give it away quite yet 😉
At the end of the day, what do you hope people take away from your music?
I hope my music fills a void in people’s lives – That it helps get them through difficult times and brings a sense of security and fulfillment in the same way it has for me. I hope my music creates a connection between what I’ve personally experienced and what the listener is experiencing.