Posted On 23 Aug 2017
After years of searching for his sound, singer-songwriter Tim Maiden realized being 100% honest in his music was the only thing that lead to his moment of clarity. Holding back his emotions not only stifled him creatively, it also led to a music career that was unfulfilling.
He now finds himself exposing his truth by blending R&B melodies with lush soundscapes. Maiden’s soulful vocals will captivate listeners instantly as evident by his upcoming first single “Old Ways.” Follow his musical journey as he begins touring this fall.
OLD WAYS SOUNDCLOUD LINK-
Learn more about Tim Maiden in the following All Access interview:
Thanks for your time today! How has 2017 been treating you? Musically, did you approach this year any differently then you did last year?
2017 has been a glimpse of the future for me. After years of working on my music I get to share it-finally. So it couldn’t be better. My approach is no different though, just to create and follow my gut.
Where does this interview find you today? Is there music playing in the background? If so, what is it? What kind of music do you listen to when you are working? What music gets you instantly out of a bad mood?
I’m on my roof in Brooklyn. Watching traffic pile up on the Manhattan Bridge. I got a playlist I made the other day currently playing is Kendrick ‘The Heart part 4’. Hmmm the stuff I listen is constantly changing but I drove from PHX to LA the other day and vibed with Air for most of the 6 hrs. Always changing though I’ve been on a Roy Ayers kick too who actually inspired the track I recorded last week.
Growing up, have you always wanted to be a musician? Can you recall your earliest musical memory?
I grew up playing music at a young age. Although I didn’t always want to be a musician I always wanted to be creative. So I latched on to whatever outlet I could express myself through. My earliest memory of music is sitting on the piano bench next to my Father for hours. I would play as if I knew what I was doing. Luckily our bench had just enough room for us both. That was the beginning for me.
If you weren’t a musician today, what else could you see yourself doing?
Nothing specific comes to mind. That’s most likely because I love music but hopefully I would be doing something that would challenge me as a human and push me to grow. It would probably have to involve making something with my hands, creating, or maybe I would be hiding out low key on some remote beach. Yeah that’s it.
I always like to ask artists about where they came from and how that city or town has influenced them as an artist now. So how do you think your hometown has affected who you are as a musician and the art that you create?
I grew up in Phoenix, Arizona. The desert impacted me in every way as a person, especially as an artist. The feeling of isolation as a child and the forces of a giant desolate desert made me look inward to find my own voice I guess. I grew up listening to the coyotes howl and with insane droughts, which made the rain such a beautiful personal experience. I grew up with so much space space space and shooting stars everywhere. I view art as a force that creates space for the mind. I will forever value space in my work because of the desert.
What was the inspiration for your first single, “Old Ways”? How exactly did it go from being an idea in your head to a full-fledged song? How long did it take to write it and put it all together?
‘Old Ways’ was the first song I wrote in my apt in NYC that I knew needed to be recorded. At that point I had been writing/recording for over 2 years and didn’t think I would start writing again. Honestly I was exhausted but moving to the city told me otherwise. I probably wrote 90% of it in 5-10 minutes. I’ve learned finding a good song is mostly just getting out of the way and letting it happen.
How did the video/visuals for “Old Ways” come together? What was it like putting that together and working with your director? How creatively involved were you with it?
I had the opportunity and privilege of working with director and creative Derek Welte who happens to be a very close friend. We had a lot of time to navigate how we wanted my first video to feel. I was very involved, as I am with all my work. We wanted to get out of the city so we chose Woodstock. About a week previous they got the last snow of the winter. I didn’t know what we were looking for but knew we’d find it one way or another. So we hiked up Lookout MT, which in many ways mirrored my journey thus far. After hiking 3 miles in 3 ft of snow getting to the top was extremely fulfilling. What a badass director, a lot of folks would have turned back after 5 minutes. He’s a joy to work with and has an incredible instinct for capturing and translating raw emotion and the video displays that, especially in the footage of Liliana Lech.
When do you hope to release more new music and a full-length album of new songs? Do you feel like you are in a really creative space right now?
I’m releasing a single every month for next 3-4 months and come fall plan on touring and possibly dropping my full length. I just recorded a song last week. Its something I’ve been looking for. I was in JFK on my way to LA to record and sat behind Roy Ayers who was headed to Miami and knew it was going to be a good weekend. Roy’s a legend.
How do you think that being a musician has helped you live your best life? Can you talk about the joy that it brings you today?
Life’s a rollercoaster man, so you should do something you love. It may be the hardest road with nothing promised but at least you didn’t fake it. That’s what matters, I’d rather do something incredibly challenging and find joy then being miserable for comfort. For the record you can be happy doing anything just needs to mean something to you. Oh and always slow down, always.
What are your plans for the rest of the summer? Do you have any tour dates currently lined up?
Soak up as much sun as humanly possible, listen to a lot of Roy and probably add some tequila. No tour dates yet, that’s coming soon…
Who are some of your very favorite artists or rather, what musicians have continued to inspire you and your music? What musicians would you absolutely love to work with in the future?
Man this isn’t easy, we got so many talented humans. On the mainstream right now not many folks have done what Frank Ocean has done in a while. Made cats like me thankful because he gets the bigger picture and ain’t out to grab as much fame as possible. The dude is just trying to make honest art and at his level I appreciate that. I would love to collaborate with a ton of different artists, producers, filmmakers etc.
Could probably name 50, I passed Earl Sweatshirt on the street the other day and always been a fan so lets start there.
What do you hope is the message of your music? What do you hope people continue to take away from your songs?
A human who gives something honest I think. Whether its cool or boring as hell or maybe it’s the SOUND but I’m aiming for honest most of all. Everyone is going take something different and that’s the beauty in it, my job is to bring something from my gut.
What advice would you give to someone just getting started on this music path? Or even to someone young that is thinking of becoming a musician one day?
Don’t wait for everything to be perfect to believe in yourself. Just go and it all seems to come together and work out. If you can only play one chord play the shit out of that one chord and make me feel something.